Badbartopia
Badbartopia.net  My Favorites Contact me
               RSS  Feed
Badbartopia Internet
 
 My Rants
 
 My story
 
 My Resume
 
 My Doodles
 
 
Responses to this rant
Bart   Wednesday, 6/13/2018 7:37 AM
Older rants
June 13, 2018   Troll-stalking
May 23, 2018   Another badbartopia email spoofer, A sunny-day Disney adventure, Raymond E Feist book signing
May 15, 2018   A rainy-day Disneyland trip The Bassoon King
Apr 28, 2018   Down and Out in Purgatory
Apr 13, 2018   Operation Hail Storm
Mar 4, 2018   American Exodus
Jan 22, 2018   Christmas, Didn't Get Frazzled, The Sea People, The Rooster Bar, Last Burial Night, Doctor Who and the Krikkit Men
Dec 15, 2017   Mistrial, City of Death and Disneyland
Nov 14, 2017   Grace Vanderwaal - Just the Beginning
Nov 11, 2017   Tim Powers Signing at Mysterious Galaxy for Down and Out in Purgatory
November 4, 2017   Return to Disneyland, Halloween at the office, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, The Long Cosmos Maximus One year After War Dogs, Killing Titan Daddy, Stop Talking
October 29, 2017   Bruce Campbell Signing, Hail to the Chin, Further Confessions of a B Movie Actor
October 20, 2017   Meg & Dia, Imagine Dragons in concert, 2 Years 8 months and 28 Nights
October 17, 2017   All Apologies
October 16, 2017   Thrawn
Septempber 7, 2017   The Rage of Dragons, The Lincoln Myth
August 10, 2017   The Molly Ringwalds, Dia Frampton Musical awesomeness, Beauty and the Feast
July 28, 2017   The IT Sweatshop revisited, How to Talk to Girls at Parties, American Gods and The Magicians, Rogue One, Camino Island
July 24, 2017   CRV glovebox difficulties, San Diego Comic Con rant
July 11, 2017   Beauty and the Beast at the Lyceum, Earthweeds, Sons of Neptune Book 1, Aftermath, Empire's End, If Chin's Could Kill: Confessions of a B Movie Actor
June 30, 2017   Eastwood: No Direction Home book 2
June 23, 2017   Excellent Adventures on the PCH (part 4/4) - The PCH family vacation tale concludes, my new record, record player, and Emeli's site is live!
Jun 14, 2017   A noteworthy eBook mention before I return to my vacation ranting - No Direction Home
June 9, 2017   Excellent Adventures on the PCH (part 3/4) - The PCH family vacation tale concludes...almost. More pictures of spooky old houses, trees, rocks, and other things that nobody cares about! Plus, Goonies stuff
June 2, 2017   Excellent Adventures on the PCH (part 2/4) - The PCH family vacation tale continues... And more pictures of trees and other things that nobody cares about!
May 31, 2017   Excellent Adventures on the PCH (part 1/4) - Way more detail than anyone wants about our vacation up the coast of California and Oregon. And lots of pictures of trees!
Apr 26, 2017   Resurrection America, Pizza Studio art, AmandaLynn, Emeli art, and Disney art, and Gifted
Apr 14, 2017   My San Fransisco OSI PI adventure & "Thanks for the Money: How to Use My Life Story to Become the Best Joel McHale You Can Be"
Apr 12, 2017   Neil Gaiman speaks, Norse Mythology, American Gods comic adaptation, The Magicians TV series, and Dirk Gently on TV
Feb 2, 2017   A trip to the ever-less-magical land of Disney, The Prince of Outcasts, the Whistler, and a brief mention of The Magicians.
Jan 21, 2017   An update to my nerd wall at work, Found out about Richard Thompson (Cul De Sac) being gone, A list of all the stuff (or most, anyway) I've given up to new homes, A review of Dave! and Warp, and a couple of new doodles.
Dec 23, 2016   My final visit to Potterland and a couple of doodles
Dec 11, 2016   Books and related comics, and free/cheap stuff. Not taco Bell Material, President Me, A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms, The Hedge Knight (comic), The Sworn Sword (comic) Ooma, Ringplus, Amazon prime and other money-saving stuff.
Dec 4, 2016   I'm sharing my sad doodles with the world again. They're not very good, but I'll bet they're better than your scribbles!
Nov 12, 2016   Yet another trip to The Wonderful World of Harry Potter!
Nov 7, 2016   Blathering on about a few of the books I've read recently - Spire, The Check, and Dangercide, Pirate Detective
Oct 7, 2016   Yet another Visit to Harry Potterland. Oh, and my lease-mileage calculator.
July 25, 2016   Another Visit to Harry Potterland, a new car, a new shirt, a new dog, and a whole lot of the same old complaining
May 17, 2016   Email spoofers, Phishing emails, and scammers galore!
Apr 30, 2016   Winter's Edge and a Management zombie attack
Apr 23, 2016   Harry Potter land re-visited
Apr 9, 2016   Xenia...again
Apr 2, 2016   Sing Street, Batman vs Superman, Craigslist griping
Mar 1, 2016   The Wizarding World of Harry Potter Hollywood preview, fun at work, Xenia's new song, A Vanishing Glow, Our Fair Eden, Race Wars, The Force Awakens
Jan 27, 2016   Text Wars, Books I've read... Yup, that's pretty much it
Jul 30, 2015   Xenia Martinez news Still selling stuff on eBay, Hyperbole and a Half (the book), The Path Between the Seas, Trigger Warning, In Fifty years We'll all Be Chicks
Mar 17, 2015   Selling my treasures on eBay, Hyperbole and a Half, the Long Mars, Gray Mountain, Anathem, The Golden Princess, The Given Sacrifice
Mar 12, 2015   You'll be sorely missed, Sir Terry
Jan 21, 2015   More BBC 4 radio dramatizations by Neil Gaiman & Terry Pratchett: The Amazing Maurice, Guards! Guards!, Neverwhere, Night Watch, Small Gods, Wyrd Sisters
Jan 10, 2015   JabberWocky, Neil Gaiman style!
Dec 24, 2014   The Good Omens BBC treatment
Aug 03, 2014   Every hobby has to end eventually, right?
Oct 8, 2013   Warning: Extreme Geekness ahead!
Oct 1, 2013   The Bloody Crown of iGoogle
Aug 26, 2013   Headphones at work
Aug 22, 2013   The guvmint is gonna getcha
June 25, 2013   Dweebs vs Big Bang vs IT Crowd
Jul 3, 2012   Xenia Martinez & Dia Frampton concert
Feb 24, 2012   Reading...just not much
The Reluctant Fundamentalist
Being an idiot with Lev Grossman
Jan 7, 2012   If it ain't broke...
Aug 22, 2011   non-ComicCon report 2011
A Thousand Splendid Suns
An Act of Self Defense
May 5, 2011   On Stranger Tides
vs.
On Stranger Tides
March 2, 2011   I'm a gigantic slacker...
Ikariam
Wild Guns
Lord of Ultima
Metin 2
Lord of the Rings Online
Dec 15, 2010   Bring out your dead!
Aug 17, 2010   San DiegoComicCon 2010
August 11, 2010   I'm not dead yet...
May 3, 2010   Hero Comics
Liberty Comics
Dr Horrible
Neil Gaiman & Sam Keith in Batman
The Guild, Felicia Day
April 27, 2010   Mean Gene Wilder! Grrr!!!
April 24, 2010   If it's not one Jihad, it's another...
April 20, 2010   The Satanic Verses
March 15, 2010   Unseen Academicals
Feblueberry 8, 2010   The un-reading shelf (from most of 2009)
Feblueberry 2, 2010   Emily the Strange, the Lost Days...a novel
Nov 25, 2009   Happy Halloween, Mom!
Nov 18, 2009   Summer Vacation in Idaho
Aug 20, 2009   San Diego ComicCon 2009
Aug 12, 2009   I'm a big, fat slacker
June 05, 2009   The networks are helping me cut back on my TV viewing
June 04, 2009   Mandy Moore's Amanda Leigh,
Chris Isaak's Mr Lucky
and
My name is Bruce?
and Emmy Rossum? Where am I going with this?
May 21, 2009   Randy would have really liked Fanboys...sigh
May 3, 2009   The Spring reading shelf
Apr 21, 2009   Holidays On Ice (a little late for Christmas)
Apr 18, 2009   Leviticus Cross and other Hector Sevilla comic book stuff
Apr 16, 2009   The fantastically amazing and banal Badbartopia RSS Feed
Mar 31, 2009   Neil Gaiman's Blueberry Girl
Mar 30, 2009   My Amazon mis-order turns out to be not so annoying as previously expected...
(AKA the Dr Horrible soundtrack)
Mar 23, 2009   Stephan Pastis & Richard Thompson have me looking forward to the 2009 SD ComicCon
Mar 19, 2009   Dr Horrible's Sing-Along Blog,
The Guild
Mar 08, 2009   The Wonderful Wizard of Oz comic adaptation,
Neil Gaiman's Sandman: The Dream Hunters
Mar 04, 2009   Little Brother
Mar 1, 2009   Pete & Pickles
Feb 11, 2009   She & Him
Flakes
Pushing Daisies
Jan 26, 2009   The Scourge of God,
When You are Engulfed in Flames
Jan 14, 2009   On the Road = hippy nonsense
Jan 12, 2009   One-by-one, my fish have met their maker
Dec 26, 2008   My Azeroth-avoidance continues
Dec 23, 2008   Nothing to see...move along
Dec 15, 2008   New scribbles
Dec 10, 2008   The Oct-Nov-Dec reading shelf
Dec 1, 2008   Shalimar the Clown
the economic impact of the events in Mumbai
Nov 21, 2008   Star Wars: Allegiance
Nov 20, 2008   Daredevil Black Widow: Abattoir
Nov 17, 2008   Travel Team
Nov 16, 2008   A new comic adaptation of The Wizard of Oz
Nov 14, 2008   Berke's Books:
The Last Basselope
Edward Fudwupper Fibbed Big
Mars Needs Moms
Opus: 25 years
Nov 13, 2008   Return to Azeroth?
Nov 12, 2008   Goodbye, Opus
Oct 29, 2008   Halloween costumes of 2008
Project Superpowers
Marvels
Ruins
Oct 23, 2008   The Graveyard Book
Interworld
Oct 16, 2008   Nation
Oct 10, 2008   The Joy of Programming
My foray into Ajax
Oct 9, 2008   My Saturn Scare
Opus ends
Terry Pratchett's condition
Oct 3, 2008   The Hitchhiker's Guide, Book 6...by Eoin Colfer?
Oct 2, 2008   Media master - music online
Sony builds a "better" camera
Sept 24, 2008   The September reading shelf
Sept 17, 2008   Still missing Randall
The Fish tank...again
The Graveyard Book
Sept 15, 2008   Slacking...as usual
The Sasquatch Dumpling Gang
Sept 9, 2008   The dearth of Opus strips
yes, I meant to say "dearth"
Sept 8, 2008   A new monitor goes bad...but it all ends happily
Sept 3, 2008   A Boy and His Dog,
Richard Corben,
H.P. Lovecraft's Haunt of Horror
Sept 2, 2008   A slightly newish look
(aka "why I will never be a graphic designer")
Aug 11, 2008   Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull in all its incarnations Mike Kunkel's re-imagining of Shazam
July 29, 2008   San Diego Comiccon 2008
July 24, 2008   Neil Gaiman
July 17, 2008   Chris Isaak!
June 30, 2008   The Woman Who Wouldn't
Legends II
Mouse Guard Fall 1152
the Jetta's latest round of repairs
fishtank overpopulation
June 10, 2008   The Reading Shelf
Fish tank jungle
Attack of the bees
June 3, 2008   Missing Randall
May 9, 2008   My French Whore
Apr 28, 2008   Fish tank fatality
Flight of the Conchords
The Dangerous Alphabet
Mar 5, 2008   Gene Wilder book signing at Borders
new fish tank
subpoenaed!
Jan 11, 2008   The Jetta Strikes back!
The Plucker
The Anubis Gates
National Treasure II
Nov 8, 2007   San Diego on Fire,
A clean break from WoW,
UCSD Extension Java I graduation (kinda)
Making Money
Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim
Oct 2, 2007   Back to school, Java class at UCSD
AT&T's Uverse
new sketches
Blockbuster movie pass
August 28, 2007   Mandy Moore concert!
Aug 19, 2007   ComicCon 2007 - Neil Gaiman, Iron Man and all the usual suspects
May 22, 2007   World of Spamcraft (and other spamalicious topics), forum fun...gus, the woes of being a contractor and PIRATES!!
Apr 5, 2007   I'm a conservative - bite me!
Timbaland? Dumb!
Marie Antoinette - snaggle teeth and teasing glimpes. Sweet!
John Q - a lesson about fatherhood or a liberal-propoganda film?
Mar 30, 2007   Things that make me grumpy-er,
employed again at last,
Finn and assorted other ramblings
Feb 8, 2007   The search for employment continues..and the unemployment benefits are NOT pouring in!
Jan, 22, 2007   Freed from the bondage of employment, a very brief review of a few books and films
Dec 17, 2006   Sad excuses, The Innocent Man, 1776, THe Man in High Castle, Absolute Sandman, Wintersmith, garage sale treasures: Ghost in the Machine
Aug 20, 2006   Writers of the Future XXII/Tim Powers, more movie reivews
July 20, 2006   San Diego ComicCon 2006
July 15, 2006   Superman Returns, inconsiderate morons, Peewee's Playhouse returns, my plea for more pirate movies
July 8, 2006   Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest, Wild Animal Park critters, site remodeling
Jun 27, 2006   The good, the bad and the mediocre (a bunch of movie reviews in the new forum).
June 15, 2006   Because of Romek - A Holocaust Survivor's Memoir
May 21, 2006   The DaVinci Code, Aeon Flux, Everything You Want
May 12, 2006   World of Warcrack, the Office, Coraline, my apologies...
Jan 24, 2006   Christmas Vacation 2006, Syriana, Traveling Pants, Wish You Were Here
Dec 19, 2005   Festive Neighbors, the death of Olivia, Media Misinformation surrounding Brent Wilkes/ADCS, Make Love the bruce campbell way
Nov 15, 2005   Microsoft Technet 2005 launch party, Lexmark printer problem, a bad, bad day, changing dentists.
Oct 22, 2005   Thud!, Anansi Boys, Where's my cow
Oct 18, 2005   Terry Pratchet Thud! signing, Neil Gaiman Anansi Boys signing
Oct 15, 2005   A very, very late Comiccon 2005 report.
Jun 23, 2005   The black hole of Warcraft, The Years of Rice and Salt, After the Sunset, Madagascar, Mr and Mrs Smith, Taxi.
Jun 3, 2005   All is quiet on the PM Front, War of the Worlds (the novel), Kingdom of Heaven, Sahara, Star Wars Episode III, Flight of the Phoenix
May 9, 2005   The program managers strike again, More of my horrendous sketches, Spanglish, A Lot Like Love, Elektra, The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (the film)
Apr 9, 2005   Stuck in Corporate Hell, a few of my recent sketches, Miss Congeniality 2, Collateral
Mar 21, 2005   Revenge of the Jetta (car problems), a Newegg purchase, a few new drawings, more Opus
Feb 13, 2005   The Mail mystery solved, more of my crappy sketches, A few new photos of the girls, bill-bert (introducing the new Project Manager), sweet phone skills, Opus, Dungeons and Dragons, In Good Company
Jan 27, 2005   Mystery mail, new photos of my beautiful kids, some new sketches, an Episode 3 spoiler, Opus, Going Postal, The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch, Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep, Ubik, Remember the Titans, Lemony Snicket`s A Series of Unfortunate Events, Dodgeball
Jan 7, 2005   Christmas 2004, Update to the site, Elf & King Arthur revisited, National Treasure, Opus, Blade Runner
Dec 18, 2004   A new Stephanie sketch, another Target web page goof, the SD Union Tribune confirms Greg Bear`s research for Vitals, Miramar VW proves my dealer service assertions wrong, neighborhood Christmas fun, Opus
Nov 24, 2004   More of my mediocre drawings, nw russian mail-order coins, Star Wars toys, a big green spider comes to visit, Opus, Dies the Fire, Digital fortress, The Incredibles, Twisted, Van Helsing
Nov 03, 2004   Some thoughts regarding the 2004 election, rants about the environment, a memory rebate update, new computer issues, Opus, The Lone Drow, Deception Point, Roswell season 2 on DVD
Oct 12, 2004   An interesting quiz, mal-in rebates, a parrot joke, my new computer, thoughts on frame removal, web logs, Opus, Vitals, Star Wars trilogy on DVD, Ladykillers
Sep 23, 2004   My "Heath" sketch for Mark Oakley, an update on my a PNY rebate check, the fictitious AWNA Act, Browser Issues with the site, Opus/Pickles, The DaVinci Code, Garden State (Natalie Portman), Man on Fire
Sep 11, 2004   A new drawing: "Stephanie", redneck wisdom, my salary to hourly reclassification, funny video: news from iraq, an update on my mail-in pny rebate, a new rebate through Costco, Ella Enchanted, Highlander Endgame, Princess of Thieves, The Whole Ten Yards
Aug 27, 2004   Fun with my VW Warranty, Opus, Harry Potter & The Order of the Phoenix, The Land of SokMunster, The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Wedding, Napoleon Dynamite, Hidalgo, Chasing Liberty, Out of Time
Jul 23, 2004   San Diego ComicCon 2004, the family summer vacation, Bruce Campbell, Opus, Nanny Ogg`s Cookbook, Angels & Demons, Folk of the fringe, Bourne Supremacy, i robot, Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen, Cody Banks 2, Hellboy
Jul 19, 2004   *** PNY Rebate fun, IE Patch, Linux and socialism, liberal scum, Opus, BIM, timeline, master and commander, tad hamilton, stuck on you,cold mountain, 50 first dates, the terminal, spiderman 2, king arthur, a hat full of sky, the thousand orcs, meditations on middle earth
Jun 20, 2004   Memorial day pictures, Duplex, Mark Oakley/Heroes, Wild Animal Park Dinosaurs, B-52s concertman, Say After Tomorrow, Big Fish, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Eragon, A Hat Full of Sky, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
May 08, 2004   Pat Tillman, LOTR Toys, 13 Going on 30, Mean Girls, Tolkien Miscellany, Last Juror, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, Pork Tornado
Apr 06, 2004   Roswell season 1 DVD and a some other mindless drivel
Feb 19, 2004   Highlander site contest results, new downloads, princess gallery updates, lord of the rings toys, harry potter, underworld. lost in translation, the hunted, a tolkien miscellany...
Feb 09, 2004   Murder at 1600, Radio, Cheaper by the Dozen, King Arthur, Spiderman 2, Van Helsing, Harry Potter, Tolkien Miscellany, Mark Oakley, massive snow in Idaho...
Jan 28, 2004   Swat, Uptown Girls, Somethings Gotta Give, Along Came Polly, Seabiscuit, Ashley Judd Marathon, Van Helsing, Harry Potter, Science Fiction Bok Club, Nanny Ogg`s Cookbook, RA Salvatore, Mythology (Alex Ross), Fastner & Larson, Best page in the universe, etc, etc...
Jan 07, 2004   Clint`s rules, X-Men 2, Holes, Pirates, Two Towers, Freaky Friday (Haley Hudson), new drawings, Thieves` World, Playskool Star Wars, new Interest section
Jan 02, 2004   nothing all that interesting...
Dec 21, 2003   Nemo, Highlander page, Christmas vacation 2003, star wars kid
Dec 12, 2003   E.T. (Erika Eleniak), new drawings, Opus, Santa Claus 2 (Elizabeth Mitchell), Legolas toy/pics, How to Deal (Mandy Moore), Myth update, Last Samurai
Nov 27, 2003   Another Fine Myth, Elf
Nov 22, 2003   Dude, Where`s Bill & Ted
Nov 18, 2003   Not much to say
Nov 15, 2003   Disneyland, Astronaut`s Wife, Dumer and Dumber-er, Monstrous Regiment
Nov 10, 2003   Terry Pratchett, Matrix Revolutions
110103   School of Rock, Terry Pratchett signing, Darth Vader MBNA bust, San Diego fires
Aug 17, 2003   Johnny English, San Diego Comic-Con
Jun 17, 2003   Assorted ramblings
May 28, 2003   Not much to say
May 24, 2003   Almost nothing of note
May 17, 2003   Matrix Reloaded, Pirates
Mar 23, 2003   The Police, Pirates, Lord of the Rings grievances part II
Mar 16, 2003   Lord of the Rings grievances part 1
Super auld stuff   A big list of old submissions with boat loads of broken links

Another badbartopia email spoofer,
Sunny-day Disney adventure, and
Raymond E Feist book signing


This isn't a malware site. Honest injun!

A few years ago, I mentioned that some mass-mailing scumbag was sending out emails likely filled with links to malware using my domain as the sender address. Well, history has repeated itself. I was notified by GodDaddy (my web host) that my email account had likely been hacked and was told to change my password. I did, just to be safe, and then started looking more closely at the traffic on my email account. I discovered that I had received a whole bunch of undeliverable email messages on May 12 between 7:10am and 11:59pm, but I didn't see a single email to any of these addresses in my "sent items" email folder.

After changing my password (around 6 hours after these undeliverable messages started coming in), I continued to receive the undeliverable emails, which makes me wonder how many of these messages were actually deliverable (they were being sent to seemingly random telephone numbers@qq.com). So there's probably a big group of angry Asian people out there (all the undeliverable emails I saw were full of Asian characters sets) who want to tear badbartopia down.

I assume Godaddy just didn't do the legwork to determine that the emails weren't actually coming from my email account and the aforementioned scum bellies were just spoofing my email address as the sender (something that's not difficult at all to do). But maybe I'm wrong - the messages stopped coming in by the end of the day on May 12, so maybe the password change did thwart them somehow. Or maybe Godaddy did something. I don't know.

So if you're only of the lucky email recipients coming here to see why you got malware email from my domain, hello. And don't blame me.

The Land of Disney!

As I mentioned, the wife and I went to Disneyland again earlier this month. Unlike the previous visit that was so perfect for deterring crowds, this visit, sadly, was cloud and rain free. The sun was out and so were the crowds. The lines were long, and people were everywhere - much less bundled up than they were on our previous visit.

We used Downtown Disney parking again, but this time we used 4.5 of the 5 hours allotted to us with validation (we ate at our usual restaurant, the La Brea Bakery, and had another overpriced, but very tasty Disneyland meal - mine was breakfast, the wife had a sandwich). This time, when getting validated by the waiter, I actually mentioned the 4 hours specified on the parking ticket vs the 5 hours outlined on the Disney web site. And he had an actual explanation. He told us that the 3 and 5 hour hour validated-parking deal on the web site was the actual parking policy in Downtown Disney. But the powers-that-be at Disneyland ordered cards (and validation stamps) when the 2 and 4 hour validated-parking policy was in effect, then changed the policy soon after. The correct validation policy is also on signs you see when giving your parking ticket to the parking attendant on the way out, stating the 3 and 5 hour policy. So there you have it.

I've never really spent much time in the Hollywood section of California Adventure, so we decided to take a walk down that street before heading into Disneyland. Along the way, we grabbed fast passes to Soaring Over Whatever-It-Is-Now (I haven't been on the ride since the changed it). But the passes weren't good for almost 3 hours from the time we got them, so it seemed unlikely that we'd use them (we didn't). We headed over to HollywoodLand street and took a closer look at the shops and restaurants on the street, quickly discovering that there really wasn't much that we'd missed by not spending time in this section of the park (mostly food-related and little kid attractions). We did take a walk through an art shop and I found a Mermaid/Pirate painting that was on a wooden plank and was super expensive. I wanted it a lot, but it was way too expensive, so it didn't get added to my art collection in the garage (where all the other art I've created or acquired over the years sits in boxes).

As I mentioned, the park was super-crowded, so I really hadn't planned to go on a lot of rides because I dislike standing in lines in the sun. My lily-white, albino skin and the sun are not friends. But we did head over to Pirates of the Caribbean, the one ride that's always worth the wait. As we neared the bridge over the end of the line, there didn't appear to be a long line stretching past the bridge (as there always is on busy days now), so we initially thought that, by some miracle, the ride had a short line again, as it had the previous visit. But as we came down the hill, we saw why there was no line - the ride was closed. So bummed.

So we headed over to The Haunted Mansion since it was nearby. And the line was just as crazy long as it always seems to be these days.




We walked around to a few of the other rides, finding the same heinously long lines everywhere. The Star Wars zone was still under construction and had a new obstruction preventing anyone from peeking through the door. After an hour or two of ride-free exploring, we decided to head to the ice cream shop and have our usual treats (my go-to is the Fanta orange cream float. Delicious) and then head out without going on a single ride. On the way out of Downtown Disney, we popped into anther art shop (the Wonderground Gallery) that caught my eye. There were a lot of the same old Disney prints you see in every Disneyland shop, but this shop also had a bunch of very unique prints I'd never seen by an artist named Jasmine Becket Griffith. She paints creepy, big-eyed, very unique interpretations of all the most well-known Disney princesses and a couple of Star Wars heroines. The framed prints cost way more than I would spend, so I just picked up a couple of $5 3x5 postcards of my favorites: Leia and Rey. They're hanging on my cubicle wall now.

This concludes the latest episode of How Not to Visit Disneyland.


Raymond E Feist Signing

As I also very briefly mentioned last time, I attended a book signing for Raymond E Feist's newest book, King of Ashes, held at the Mysterious Galaxy bookstore on May 8. If you're a fan of the fantasy genre and over the age of forty, it's very likely you're familiar with the Magician series of books from the 80s: Magician (published in 1982 - a publisher cash grab led to the initial book being split into two volumes: Apprentice and Master), Silverthorn (1985), A Darkness at Sethanon (1986). I took my original paperback copies of Magician: Apprentice and Magician: Master to the signing, along with the new hardcover of King of Ashes. There were about forty of my fellow nerds in attendance at the signing, many who had large tote bags filled with books they wanted R.E.F. to sign along with their new book (were it not for the requirement that you could only attend the signing with the purchase of the new novel, they doubtless would have just brought the stack of old books to be signed and then later sell on eBay). The two paperbacks I brought were purchased in 1990 (they don't look so bad for being 28 year-old paperbacks - I still have the original receipts for each one from Waldenbooks - but they're paperbacks, so signed or not, they won't be going up on eBay).

As with most signings, the author takes a while to talk about how he became a writer. R.E.F. said that he kind of accidentally became a writer. It sounds like writing as a career wasn't something he thought would ever be possible or even remotely likely until one of his D&D nerd buddies read some of the stuff he'd written to provide backstory to the role-playing games he played with his coven of weirdos. After reading the story, he looked at Ray and told him, "You're a writer." And the rest is history. There were a lot of other details about his climb to bestselling authorship, but that was a couple of weeks ago and the details now blur together with all the other stories R.E.F. told.

Amongst the stories I do remember (thanks to the barest of notes I took after the fact):

  • the similarities to Hamlet and Great Expectations in the Magician (showing that he's also pretty well-read). He mentioned that Pug's name was originally going to be Pip but Alan Dean Foster already had a Pip (I don't know that I've read that series - though the titles are familiar).
  • the way the first chapter of Magician kept being moved to later chapters as ideas for backstory kept interjecting themselves.
  • the characters in his stories live lives of their own in his subconscious, telling him how to write them.
  • R.E.F. didn't go to college until he was 27.
  • He's a native San Diegan and talked a lot about his kids who live in the Bay area and Massachusetts. He spends time with his kids playing World of Warcraft (he's a guildmaster in the game). He mentioned the specific server he plays on, but I haven't played Wow in so long, that I didn't really pay much attention to all the WoW talk.
  • He also talked a lot about his other books he's written and some of the character in those stories (some of which I may have read, but I have no specific recollection of any of the others - it's been almost thirty years since I read the Magician series).
  • He mentioned his books being optioned by Hollywood studios (it was a similar story to the one Tim Powers told about On Stranger Tides, except for the part about none of R.E.F.'s books being made into anything more than a video game in the 90s). As I recall, the game company didn't really have great success with the games.
  • R.E.F. name-dropped George R.R. Martin (apparently they know one another pretty well) and talked about how Game of Thrones could never haven been published in the 80s because book publishers would have considered it too "adult." Which is funny, because I remember the original Wild Cards anthology from the late 80s and early 90s (edited and occasionally contributed to by George) being pretty explicit. Maybe not GoT explicit, but explicit for the times.

R.E.F. didn't mention the 2006 comic book adaptation (which I had completely forgotten about before the signing, or I would have brought a couple of issues with me to be signed) of Magician. I have the 12 issue Dabel Brothers/Marvel Magician Apprentice series and the 5 issue Marvel Raymond E Feist's Riftwar series. I mumbled something about this to R.E.F. at the signing and he mostly just looked confused. He did eventually say something about "oh, the adaptations. Context!" when he figured out what the deranged mumbler in front of him was saying.

I still have a bunch of stuff to blather on about (a quick trip to Idaho, a whole bunch of books I've read recently, the CDs I keep mentioning, etc.), but to be merciful, I'm going to end here for now. More soon.



Got something to say? Say it. (1 response).

This page has been viewed

times since I started tracking hits.
(This is a rudimentary non-unique IP hit counter, so don't be too impressed)
 


© Brett Wilkes. All Rights Reserved.
Terms of Use | Privacy Policy