Monthly Archives: August 2013

Geek Gods – My pantheon

A couple weeks back for Nerdsday, I outlined my pantheon of geek goddesses. As usual life gets in the way of regular blogging, and while I went with the semi-sexist “ladies first” I always planned this as a two parter. So here they are – my nominations in no particular order – the geek gods.

ImageIf there was a Zeus of Geek Gods – Patrick Stewart would be it. As Capt. Jean Luc Picard on Star Trek TNG, and later Professor X of the X-men movies, he is beyond any doubt one of the all-time greats. He’s an amazing actor (I’ve never seen him perform badly in a role) and awesome to his fans. I mean really, who makes a cotton candy moustache, besides Sir Patrick?

But he’s a god not just because of his movie and television roles. He’s also a vocal activist against domestic violence and violence against women. And that’s a big reason he’s my Zeus.

 

 

 

 

 

ImageIf Stewart is Zeus, George Takei is the geek god of comedy, known first for his role as Sulu on Star Trek. With nearly 5 million followers on facebook, 350,000 on pinterest, and more than 790,000 on twitter, it could be said “Uncle George” is among the funniest geek gods online.

He’s well known for his activism in equality (not just LGBT but racial and economic), and almost as well known for his puns. Some may call them bad puns, but I love puns so nearly all of them give me a chuckle.

 

 

 

 

 

 

ImageTo every hero, there’s a villain. And some lucky folks get to play iconic roles on both sides of the morality scale. Sir Ian McKellan is sublime as the X-men’s Magneto, and phenomenal at bringing J.R.R. Tolkien’s Gandalf the wizard to life.

One of my favorite McKellan memes is the one where he’s wearing a red t-shirt proclaiming “I’m Magneto & Gandalf. Get Over It.”

 

 

 

 

 

ImageThis gent’s also known for dual iconinc roles. His shirt says “I’m Han Solo, and Indiana Jones. Get Over It.” Harrison Ford may be nearing his 70s but by god he’s still an action star hero.

Only Ford could’ve pulled off answering “I know” so smugly to Carrie Fisher’s Leia in the original Star Wars trilogy. And defeat Nazis so deftly as Indiana Jones, holding his own with Sean Connery.

 

 

 

 

 

 

ImageNathan Fillion. Oh my goodness. How I didn’t know about Capt. Tightpants before Castle is a mystery for the ages. I’m a late adapter, what can I say. I fell in love with Castle as a tv show, and Fillion for his personality. And then I found Firefly. And Dr. Horrible and Capt. Hammer. Occasionally you’ll find him masquerading as Capt. Canada. Even Entertainment Weekly featured him on an issue with the title Geek God.

Fillion is like many other geek gods – proud of his geekiness, and loves interacting with his fans. His twitter feed is one of the few I follow, and honestly, he’s my free pass. (Full disclosure. His squee face is about the cutest thing ever.)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Image

You can’t mention Fillion and his fandom interactions without bringing up Wil Wheaton. He’s an old-school geek god, and I have to admit as a geek myself I’ve been crushing on him since he was Wesley Crusher to Stewart’s Picard. Now known as Sheldon’s nemesis on TBBT, he’s becoming even more known for his missives to fans, whether its parenting advice or equality, Wheaton is a geek’s geek.

And I admit, I had this exact poster on my closet door when I was a teenager. Who kids on the block?

 

 

 

 

 

ImageAh, the gents of The Big Bang Theory – making science cool and funny at the same time. Jim Parsons, Johnny Galeki, Simon Helberg and Kunal Nayyar have proven you don’t need more than a brain and great comedic timing to win the hearts and minds of millions.

Now in syndication, TBBT has turned the sit com world on its ear. Granted, without the writers the show wouldn’t be nearly half as funny or smart, but these guys are a perfect team.

 

 

 

ImageSpeaking of genius writers – Joss Whedon. I mentioned several of his iconic geek goddesses last time. This is the man behind Buffy, Firefly, Dr. Horrible, Dollhouse & more. He’s further lent his talent to bringing the Avengers to the big screen. Without a doubt, he’s the geek god of writing & directing.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ImageWhedon’s compatriot behind the camera – J.J. Abrams. The man behind Lost, the Star Trek reboot, and so many other greats was tapped to finish the Star Wars’ final three chapters. Love him or hate him, he’s a polarizing geek hero.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

robert_downey_jr_01Speaking of heroes – Ironman & Sherlock Holmes. Robert Downey, Jr. Hollywood’s one-time bad boy is now solid box office gold. His smug charm shows he was born to be Tony Stark. And he’s humble enough that he held out on Avengers 2 to make sure his co-stars made the same bank he did. That’s why he’s a geek god. Not just his roles, but his realization that he’s not the only one who makes it happen.

 

 

ImageWhat can you say about Bruce Campbell that isn’t already known. Wielding his “boomstick” in Army of Darkness, he brought a comedic camp to original the Evil Dead series.

Over the years he starred in other fandom favorites, Hercules, Xena, Brisco County, and like many other geek gods – voice over work. There’s nothing quite like hearing Ash when watching Cars 2 with your kids.

 

 

markhamill1You can’t mention Star Wars, voice over acting, and Han Solo without including Mark Hamill as a geek god. Fresh-faced Luke had all the girls swooning back in the day. Now he’s heard as the Joker and more on several animated series. Like other geek gods, he has a self-deprecating sense of humor, as evidence by his part in Jay & Silent Bob Strike Back.

 

 

 

smith And that leads us to Kevin Smith. The penultimate comic book fanboy. While some would consider that an insult, Smith revels in it. Comics and graphic novels have played large parts in his movies, from Clerks to Chasing Amy, Dogma to Strike Back. Anyone who can have this much fun and make a living at it, while entertaining the rest of us has to have a little geek god in him.

Advertisements
Categories: Nerdsdays | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Why Syria Matters – and Not Miley Cyrus.

We need to slow the hell down on our response in Syria.  Anyone who’s paid attention to the news the past few days will have seen the stories of chemical weapons buried in the “news” coverage of Miley Cyrus at the MTV VMAs, or that one of the Kardashians is in relationship trouble.  Or that Congress is again trying to repeal Obamacare. (Is it 40 or 41 votes now?)

And while Congress wasting its time on this during its summer recess is somewhat newsworthy – it all pales in comparison to what we’re up to now in the Middle East.

There are many, many reasons, but first and foremost in my mind is that if we’re this late to addressing the issue, what harm is waiting until the U.N. and international inspectors/prosecutors going to do?

Syria has been a mess for a long, long time. Only in the past couple years has it gotten out of control.  Where we helped nudge Gadaffi out with an international partnership, there are a lot of lobbiests and war mongers in the D.C. beltway all fired up to get in there and get our (U.S.) troops on the ground. 

Yes, a “red line” has been crossed.  It  is absolutely abhorrent and reprehensible that nerve gas or other mass destruction weapons have been used in civilian villages.  

At a greater issue – is whether Assad’s government or the rebels used it.  And where the folks who used the weapons got it.

Our “certainty” that it was Saddam Hussein’s government maintaining a similar cache got us into the Iraq invasion & occupation.  Political pundits and talking heads with an agenda convinced the American people and congress that Iraq had a hand in the 9-11 attacks. (We know now, Iraq did not.)  Once all was said and done, we’ve spent billions in Iraq, and countless lives and injuries to our military defenders, to wage a war for what ended up being no real reason. 

Syria is an even murkier mess.  Because the civil war has been going on for so long, the anti-Assad groups have splintered.  Some are backed by Al Queda.  Some are backed by Hezbollah.   Some are simply done with being in a dictatorship by an ethnic/religious minority.  Al Queda and Hezbollah have no problem using civilians as a body count to bolster their cause, as well shown in the past both in the U.S.,  and abroad in countries like Australia, India, and Israel. 

2008 Republican Nominee & Senator John McCain famously went to spend time with Syrian rebels and urged President Barack Obama to draw the “red line” in the sand, where the U.S. would go to war.  And one of the rebels he was with, was later identified as a kidnapper of journalists and aide workers. 

My point is, we don’t know who used the gas, when, or why just yet.  It may well have been Assad’s regime.  But it also may well have been rebels trying to make it look like Assad did it to get rid of him.  

As we’re wrapped up in Iraq, and almost out of Afghanistan, it seems to me like there’s a group in U.S. politics who aren’t happy unless we’re bombing someone.  And they’ve now got their sights set on Syria.

I’m 40.  There’s been no time in my life where the U.S. has really known peace.  I was born during the Viet Nam War.  We’ve been active in “peacekeeping” missions in Lebanon in the early 1980s, resulting in more than 250 marines being killed by a suicide bomber at their barracks.  We invaded Grenada.  The U.S. was involved in the Iran-Iraq war.  We’ve funded the Iranians through back-end deals in Nicaragua to get them weapons.  We bombed Libya strategically in 1986.  

We invaded Iraq to drive Hussein out of Kuwait, and have maintained a presence in Saudi Arabia since then.  Everything else is more recent history.

Through all of that, has been the cold war. Even with the collapse of the Soviet Union, relations with Russia have been tense.  And were it not for Putin propping Assad up in Syria with new weaponry and armaments the past two years, odds are this discussion wouldn’t even be happening.

Communism isn’t coming back, but it seems like some old Reagan-era neocons want to pull that iron curtain back up.  Should Putin be holding Syria’s hand? Nah.  But it’s not like we’ve got clean hands either.  The U.S. has often in its history held its nose while pushing forward a dictator.  (Noriega anyone?)

The idea of a U.S. troops on the ground, smack Syria for using chemical WMDs strike gets even more disconcerting when Russia says it’s going to oppose any international/U.N. action and will continue to support Assad.

Yes, the use of gas is repugnant beyond the pale, but so is putting U.S. troops in harms way if we get it wrong.  the U.S. doesn’t need to be globocop.  If the international community is so goddamned outraged about it – let them do it.  Nowhere in the world does it say the U.S. has to pull the trigger first on international war crimes. 

Categories: In all seriousness | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Oh my … my first bloggy award!

From the wonderful Sarah at The Momisodes (http://www.smn0409.blogspot.com)

It’s the “Shine On” award.  Now, when she accepted it, she threw in a Florida Georgia Line reference (I got, it’s a geographic necessity for me …) but I’m going to go with the ever-classic John Lennon “Instant Karma” for my music-monday reference.  

(http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0fpxUytsv6U)

 

So, there are apparently directions with this thing.  

Step 1: Take this here handy dandy picture and you put it on the post and/or on your blog. (Above).
 
Step 2: Link back the person who bestowed upon you this award. Done – above as well (Sarah – and here’s her facebook page – I suck at hyperlinking in WordPress. https://www.facebook.com/themomisodes )
 
Step 3: Seven facts about me:
 
Step 4: Spread the fun to 15 more folks. Now that may be tricky. 
 
Well then: Seven Facts
 
1:  I have the most ridiculous allergies – aloe & agave. (among others.) No sun burns or margaritas for me.  
 
2: Mops are the bane of my existence. I’m so grateful for swiffers.
 
3: I’d lived in four states and two countries (on two continents) before I was 11. 
 
4: By the time I was 20 I only added two more states.

5: I actually have a degree in newsprint journalism and political science, and half finished an International Relations MS concentrating in the Middle East. 

6: I hate diamonds.

7: I’m addicted to pinterest.  (but it’s under my real name)

So – now to find 15 blogs/friends to pass this on to (that nobody else did). Yeah. Maybe five?

 
Crazy Dumbsaint Of The Mind http://dumbsainthood.wordpress.com (awesome gal. Sadly I’m going to get her twice because she’s got an awesome new food-frugality blog)
 

Fitness After 40 http://mell1972.blogspot.com/  (I’ve known her for more than 20 years … she just started this blog, lets give her some love)

Gemperline’s Bike And Train Film Productions (Gemperfilm) http://www.gemperfilm.com/ (trains, planes, and bicycles.)

Poor as Folk http://poorasfolk.wordpress.com/ (did I mention that I suck at hyperlinking in WordPress?)

Manderstanding https://www.facebook.com/Manderstanding  (Cinko fails at blogging)  http://manderstanding.com/

The NY Mom – http://thenewyorkmom.com/ (someone else I’ve known 20+ years. Dancer, mom, social-media guru)

Cape Cod Scrapper – http://capecodscrapper.blogspot.com/  (amazing artist in paper & mixed media. If you’re thus inclined, Julie is a phenom.)

 

The CrazyMothereffers http://thecrazymothereffers.blogspot.com/  (also newish like me to this blogging thing. Hella funny.)

Categories: In all seriousness | Tags: , , | 3 Comments

Slice of Humble

http://sliceofhumble.blogspot.com/2013/08/on-and-on.html

This blog is a must-read for moms, would-be moms, and friends of mommas everywhere.

Post partum depression is real, and it’s scary.  And often you don’t know where the resources are until it’s too late.

Take the five minutes and read it, and bookmark this.  It may help someone you know someday.

Categories: In all seriousness | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

Geek Goddesses

Ah to hell with the normal folks, geeks have their own gods and goddesses.  There are a million memes running around the interwebs, but one of my favorites (with three girls and a niece) is the one about geek girls.  Keep your super models and superfluous ditzes, we want the smart, strong women who not only “hold their own” against male counterparts, but are the backbones of the story.  Keep your Bella Swans, Kardashians and Snookies.  Give me more ladies like these:

ImageCarrie Fisher.  Ladies of a “certain age” will remember her as one of the first female role models.  She didn’t necessarily need to be “rescued” by Luke and Han, because when it came down to it, she went toe to toe with the Darth one.  A princess with a pistol – she didn’t just sit back and let the guys do all the work.  And one of the first lines of sarcasm I can remember from a movie as a kid was “a little short for a stormtrooper, aren’t you?”

 

 

 

Image

Lynda Carter: The original Wonder Woman.  From the era as the ERA and women’s lib, Wonder Woman was a super hero with class and style.  And for me it was that her “day job” was being in the USAF.  She set the bar high for all super heroines to follow.  An amazonian princess who put it all on the line for the good of humankind.  What’s not to love.

 

 

 

 

 

ImageSarah Michelle Gellar & Eliza Dushku.  The muses of the amazing Joss Whedon.  Some dingbat asked Whedon why he continued writing strong female characters at the center of his series, and he replied “because you’re still asking me that question.”  Buffy and Faith were slayers of evil – vampires, demons, you name it. The light and dark side of a profession where nobody really lived to see their early 20s.

ImageDushku went on to star in Dollhouse and other shows involving Whedon.  It was only well after she was in Buffy, that I recognized Dushku as Arnold & Jamie Lee Curtis’ daughter in my favorite spy spoof – True Lies.

Speaking of the Whedonverse. Firefly. Yeah. You knew I’d get to that.

 

 

 

ImageGina Torres.  As Zoe Washburn she played the straight-woman to Nathan Fillion’s comedic and chaotic Capt. Mal.   Zoe took no shit, and kicked ass. Period.  I don’t know that anyone could’ve done that role better than Torres.

 

 

 

 

ImageSummer Glau.  As River Tam, Summer Glau burst onto the scene a quiet, disturbed young lady.  By the end of the series of Firefly and the Serenity film, you knew exactly why the government wanted to get their hands on her.  And also, she can kill you with her brain.  She went on to star in the Terminator: Sara Connor Chronicles.

 

 

Image

Kate Mulgrew.  Another classic of an older time, she was the first female captain to head a Star Trek series in Voyager.  Lost in the middle of nowhere with no certain way of getting home, she went well beyond “where no man has gone before” and took no prisoners on her way back.

 

 

 

ImageEmma Watson.  Who taught my step-daughter’s generation it was more than ok to be smart first, then pretty.  As Hermione Granger in J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series, Emma epitomizes the average teenage girl.  Smart, funny, insecure, growing into a brilliant leader.

 

 

Image

Felicia Day.  She’s not as well known yet outside of the realm of geeks, but somehow I get the feeling a) that doesn’t bother her and b) that’s going to change.  As part of Dr. Horrible’s cast and creator of the World of Warcraft/MMORPG spoof “The Guild” web series, Day infuses wit and wisdom into her performances shedding light on what makes the geek world turn.

 

 

 

ImageNatalie Portman.  An apprentice assassin. Darth Vader’s wife.  Luke & Leia’s mother.  V’s poster girl.  Thor’s love interest.  So many facets of nerddom for one gal to portray.

 

 

 

Image

Karen Gillan.  Donna, Rose, and Martha may have been companions for the modern Doctor, but none did it with as much sass as Amy Pond.  Not only did she give as good as she got from Eleven, she gave birth to his wife, River Song.  Who else could get away with calling the Doctor “you moron.”

 

 

 

Last but not least …

ImageJennifer Lawrence. When they remake Wonder Woman, I want Jennifer Lawrence to step into Lynda Carter’s red butt-kicking boots.  She started her film acting career with an Oscar nod in Winter’s Bone.  From there stepped into the blue skin of Rebecca Romain as an early Mystique.  Most fans know her best as Katniss Everdeen of the Hunger Games series.  I just can’t wait to see what she does next.  She has no love for the paparazzi or the Hollywood game, and talks about being a real woman in real words.

Categories: Nerdsdays | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Musical Monday

So Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines” has been growing on me.  The groove is funky and fun, I love the harmonies and I like the rhythm to it.  Especially the version he did with the Roots and Jimmy Fallon (and hell, I’m a Kimmel & CraigyFerg fan).  

If you haven’t seen it – you’ve seen (and at some point in your childhood played) all the instruments they’re using.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YOZjaqHioro#at=89

Now then, there’s a lot of controversy over the original video and the lyrics.  Some feminists say it’s promoting rape culture.  And I  can to a degree, see their point. (Unrated version: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zwT6DZCQi9k)

By the same token – If you flip that, and do it Salt n Pepa “Shoop” style – (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4vaN01VLYSQ) and it’s empowering.  I can see where Thicke thinks that’s what his motivation was.

And while it’s been redone by female artists (oh my god the voices on these gals) and done well (and I found out about it after I speculated that P!NK should have redone it because she’s got the chops too and wow what fun it could be to see her video) I wish they’d gone just a little less campy in their video rendition. 

Take a listen – close your eyes.  The voices from these gals rock.  

Heck, maybe Mr. Thicke and Pharell can get with these gals and do a fun mash up duet.

And maybe music can be just about a little fun, a little groove, and some good beats. 

Categories: In all seriousness | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Respecting those who fought for us, abroad and at home

Respecting those who fought for us, abroad and at home

Not nerdy but necessary today:

This is servicemen and vets honoring the late Col. Bud Day on Brooks Bridge in Ft. Walton Beach, Fla.

Col. Day was John McCain’s roommate in the Hanoi Hotel. He was a spokesman and advocate for the military and their families, fighting hard to keep the veteran and family benefits promised to our service members when they signed up.

He passed away earlier this week, and it wouldn’t surprise me if the entire 90 mile drive from the memorial to Barrancas National Cemetery in Pensacola isn’t lined with those paying tribute.

This photo was taken by an old HS friend (Eric Finn) today. I think it’s only fair we not only respect Col. Day, but those who still serve and have served this great nation.

Categories: In all seriousness | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

More Nerdsday Fun

More Nerdsday Fun

DeBie Hive (one of my favorite favorite bloggers) talks about crushing on Wesley (Wheaton!)  and a few other geek gods.  Ohhh. Now that’s a topic for Nerdsday … Geek Gods. Totally coming next week. 😀

 

If you don’t read DeBie Hive, you’re missing out. Totally. 

Categories: In all seriousness | Leave a comment

Blog at WordPress.com.

The Adventures of Fanny P.

...because life is just one big adventure...

Given Breath

"In his hand is the life of every creature and the breath of all mankind."

The Monster in Your Closet

. . . is quite friendly, actually!

Gabriel Lucatero

Official Site of a Hardly-known Writer

Poor as Folk

A resource for people who need to feed themselves and live with little money. Also examining the political & social climate regarding poverty and hunger

Pinwheels and Poppies

Life and stuff.

Arcadia Pod

100% Nerd Stuff

The Blog of Funny Names

Celebrating Great People With Greater Names.

My Own Little Asylum

I'll rant if I want to- call me crazy

The Art Studio by Mark Moore

Where Imagination Becomes Realality

Speak Happiness

Learning to be Fluent in Happiness & Success