Thus revealed, the creature buried its nose in the tire-tilled soil...
September 4, 2006
Then they will hiss and rip your limbs off.
Category: Fiction? … Linkage … SC Updates

Something really strange and sad happened on Friday that I want to write about shortly, but in the meantime I thought I'd note that part 3 of The Absolute Strangest Christmas Story Ever Told is up on Scary-Crayon. Here's my favorite excerpt:

Be careful down there! I hear that there are ill-tempered spiders in the darkness... black, richly furred creatures as big as cats and that scurry about heavily on legs as thick as the poles of street signs, which they never have cause to obey because there are no roads, paved or unpaved, that run through the lowermost sections of old library buildings. The eyes of these fearsome spiders glow red with menace and bloodlust, but I hear that, if you bring them jack-o-lantern shaped pails filled to the brim with sugar, they will cease their demonic machinations long enough to allow you to pet them (I hear their fur, though evil, as it grows from their fat, vicious arachnid bodies, is quite soft and pleasing to the touch). Then they will hiss and rip your limbs off. So again, I warn you -- be careful! Bring lots of cloth bandages and a cell phone, for you'll have to call someone by pressing the keys with your tongue after the spiders thoroughly feasted on your severed appendages. Having a friend with a wheelbarrow on the speed dial wouldn't hurt -- which is good, because you'll be in enough pain as it is.

I've also been pretty into paper crafts lately following my ongoing Dalek-making project, so here's a semi-neat one I came across involving an optical illusion dragon. I made two. The reality doesn't fool me at all (though it is a cool model), but the interesting thing is that when I filmed it with my digicam, the illusion totally works in the video. But then, I can't see magic eye puzzles either. Note that while this page attempts to provide an explanation -- not for this particular problem, but for Spy Kids 3D and 3D-type stuff in general -- that the illusion works when viewed by the camera's monocular lense seems to debunk it. It's also worth noting that the illusion failed for me even when I wore my glasses.

Alrighty then. Ja ne!

-posted by Wes | 5:48 am | Comments (4)
August 31, 2006
Halt! Identify yourself!
Category: SC Updates … Serious

The second part of the Dalek piece is finally up. Make your own!

In other news, on my way back from the supermarket the other day, I was stopped by a policeman in the neighborhood. The policeman was very civil and friendly, but it was still fairly insulting to be halted and asked to present my ID just several doors away from my home on the street on which I have lived since 1988. (Not that I'll necessarily be here much longer, but still.)

I can appreciate the police's apparent efforts to investigate the so-called rash of robberies in the neighborhood, but this isn't a gated community and -- as far as I know -- it's not illegal for anyone to stroll into the community and walk the sidewalks as one pleases. And I'm always cooperative with police officers, but I kinda wished it had occurred to me to deny having had my ID on me just to see what would have happened. After all, if I had been taking a walk around the neighborhood, I wouldn't necessarily have carried it with me. Would I have been taken down to the station for questioning? Would I have been asked to leave until I could furnish proof of my residency? Or would the officer have taken me door to door, asking residents if they knew me? When one is regarded as a potential robbery suspect just feet from what has been one's front door for almost as long as one can remember, one wants to know the answers to these questions.

If there had been other people outside, I would have been interested in seeing if the officer asked them to present their IDs as well.

-posted by Wes | 1:46 am | Comments (10)
August 18, 2006
some small relief
Category: Books … SC Updates … Serious

Again, not to go into too many details, but apparently some of the things that were supposed to happen to force me out on the street can't happen -- at least not so soon; there would be lots of legal issues, etc., and that would take time -- so I'm not likely to be stranded in the very near future. I'm not at all happy with the situation, but (at least regarding my housing prospects) it doesn't look quite as bad as I'd been led to believe. It still sucks though.


I was still terribly worried yesterday, though so I spent a few hours bagging a whole bunch of my action figures. It was oretty depressing, but not quite as bad as I'd imagined it to be. I won't feel too bad about selling or donating many of them for various reasons -- for example, whereas I couldn't bring myself to get rid of Tokka (even though I bagged him; I'm bagging them all for inventory purposes), I might not feel too bad about selling Sewer Samurai Leonardo or Undercover Donatello because my memories regarding Leo and Don are more attached to them as a characters as opposed to any specific representations of them. This isn't to say that I'd be willing to part with all of my various versions of the four Turtles, mind you -- you'd be hard pressed to separate me from Storage Shell Michaelangelo or Headdroppin' Raphael, to say nothing of the versions I went out of my way to acquire in later years (can you say Super Turtles?) -- but it is kind of interesting and will make for good discussion when I get around to writing about the figures. I also have virtually no emotional attachment to my carded figures -- after all, I never got to open them or play with them -- so insofar as I never planned to open them anyway (and with very few exceptions, I didn't), selling them won't be terribly disheartening either. Assuming that I sell my comics, the same rules apply, since (with the exception of comics I bought during the last three years, which I mostly haven't touched) I probably wasn't going to read the print versions again anyway. I'm way too worried about them being damaged by oils on my hands to ever remove them from their plastic sleeves.

You know, this is why I prefer to buy comics and books used -- if I get them new, I'm generally so worried about damaging them that it's fairly hard to enjoy the books! When you get one with a worn spine right off the shelf, it's pretty easy to crack it open and relax. And speaking of books, I started posting that 50K-word novel of mine from November 2004 (see the sidebar) on Scary-Crayon. It's incredibly insane. I'll be posting more of my old fiction on the site in the near future, so stay tuned.

And that's all for tonight. Thanks for your concern, everyone -- I hope things turn out relatively well when all of this is over.

-posted by Wes | 1:27 am | Comments (3)
August 8, 2006

For the record, readers, do let me know if you post a comment and then don't see it on the site afterwards, because it probably means that the comment got caught in the spam filter for whatever reason. (As evidenced by the comments thread on the Raven article on Scary-Crayon, it's pretty much my policy not to delete comments no matter how ridiculous or stupid or depressing they are. I'm sure there are potential comments that would cause me to make exceptions to the rule, though...) I don't always comb the spam queue for mistakes -- especially when it gets really large -- but if I know you've got something in there I'll likely be able to find and restore it. 🙂

In other news, for those of you interested in checking it out, I posted a new film review on Scary-Crayon yesterday evening. This is another movie that would undoubtedly make my bottom of the barrel booklet, though it's on a DVD with two other flicks (good ol' budget sets -- two discs with three movies each) that may not be nearly as awful. Anyway, I've included four video clips with the review, so you can see just how bad it is for yourself.

And tomorrow, for the first time in four years, I have an appointment with the dentist. I have a feeling I've got a billion cavities. 🙁

-posted by Wes | 3:58 pm | Comments (1)
July 26, 2006
Genesis of the Homemade Daleks: Part 1...
Category: SC Updates finally up on Scary-Crayon! This piece details the methods that resulted in my first batch of homemade Daleks (affectionately dubbed the "Bootleks" due to their obvious dissimilarities to the official models). Next time, we take a look at the more "legitimate" plans found at The Ultimate Dalek Factory, including my extensive recoloring jobs. Hurrah!

In other news, there are apparently groundhogs burrowing holes in the yard. Not that this bothers me -- I mean, they're groundhogs; the outdoors are pretty much their territory -- but Mom has placed a trap on the back porch in an effort to catch them. About a week ago, a squirrel ended up in the trap. And on Monday? A coyote.

A COYOTE. (more...)

-posted by Wes | 8:09 am | Comments (5)