August 23, 2015
horse racing, horse training, show horses, The Black Stallion, The Black Stallion's Ghost, Walter Farley
When I was a boy my mother enrolled me in the Weekly Reader Book Club. Every month we got a different book from different genres, a newsletter and a Superkernel comic book, which sadly I have none left of, just a poster. Not having a set genre in a kids book club is a good thing. While some of the things I’m drawn to today I still was back then there was still room to open up to other genres and try to build up my interests. I just eventually fell into sci-fi and superheroes with some exceptions.
One of those books you see above, The Black Stallion’s Ghost. I had heard of the movies but I hadn’t seen them. I’ve never really been drawn to horses. Once they put me on a pony and I didn’t like it. I don’t know if it was my fear of heights or what but they had to get me off pretty fast. Anyway, this book is one that’s haunted me (no pun intended) all these years. See, one time I tried to get my mom to read it to me. Unfortunately, I also couldn’t stop peeing so I kept running back and forth to the bathroom. Eventually she gave up and it sat ignored in my book collection until recently. When my mom got really sick I saw this and felt the need to complete some unfinished business. Sadly, she passed before I could complete it, the downside of the “Chapter By Chapter” review series on my website being how long it takes to finish a book. I just finished it this week if you want to take a look at the more detailed reviews, but there are spoilers attached so be warned. This report will be without spoilers and give a general overview of the book and my final thoughts on it.
The Black Stallion’s Ghost by Walter Farley
publisher: Random House (1969)
I did not get this book in 1969. I wasn’t even born until 1973 so I’m guessing that they had these around since it would say if this was a later edition, right?
August 16, 2015
Darth Vader, Howard Chaykin, Marvel Comics, Roy Thomas, Star Wars, Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope
This week I had to see people about things and my dad is turning a room into an office and occasionally needed my help. So in order to have something this week I’m going back into the other site’s archives for a review.
Considering I went a long time without a Scanning My Collection article I don’t mind that there have been three this month. They come out when I have something to review for it, while I’m trying to do the others at least once a month. And since this one is collected and I can only guess where the breaks should go I’m going to review the whole thing.
Said whole thing is the original adaptation of the first Star Wars movie, though at the time we thought it would be the only one. Marvel adapted the movie in the first issues of the Star Wars comic series, and the version I have is a collected trade by Dark Horse featuring the first three, half of the movie. I don’t know if any changes were done by Dark Horse and if they did (outside of brightening the color) that’s a shame. I have noticed that Chewbacca looks more on-model than he did in issue #23, which I reviewed earlier today. Threepio has stronger colors and I’m not sure if R2 looks different or not since I just flipped through it prior to this opening. I am curious about the changes between what we saw on screen and what was in the adaptation. Dark Horse would also do their own version for the Special Edition, although the other two comics were just the Marvel adaptation. I don’t get it, either.
Well, this party got out of control real quick.
Classic Star Wars: A New Hope #1
Dark Horse Comics (June, 1994)
reprinting Star Wars #s 1-3 (Marvel; July-September, 1977)
ADAPTATION: Roy Thomas
PENCILER: Howard Chaykin
INKER: Steve Leialoha
IDW RE-COLORIST: Pamela Rambo
IDW COVER ARTIST: Arthur Adams
IDW COVER COLORIST: Matthew Hollingsworth
LETTERER: Tom Orzechowski
ORIGINAL EDITORS: Roy Thomas & Archie Goodwin
IDW EDITORS: Bob Cooper & Edward Martin III
The fact that they redid Marie Severin, Steve Leialoha, and Carl Gafford’s colors instead of just brightening them up is already a bad sign, but I don’t have the originals to compare it to. Now I wish I did so I would know what other art changes were made.
August 9, 2015
general organizing/cleaning articles
Couch, Interior design
Abstract picture of a Couch. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
I have no pictures for this week because the clutter cleaning came from helping my dad with a project. The couch we’ve had since I was a kid has finally joined the matching chairs in being in too bad a shape to hold on to. It’s still technically usable (anyone want a sagging couch with an outdated bird motif?), but we have another perfectly good couch to call on. My parents had turned the former dining room into a sitting room with TV. We could watch a bit of TV while cooking while being close to the stove, or my dad could watch what he wanted and my mom what she wanted. Since she’s no longer with us, he moved the TV into the bedroom because I currently can’t use it and this way he could lie down and watch a bit of TV.
So yesterday we took out the old couch and moved the former sitting room couch into the living room. It wasn’t easy thanks to the tight doors and curves (we also had to move stuff to get it in) but we got it done. It took up half the day and I have a video to finish putting together. So that took up my time. What I need to do is organize all the papers and stuff…again, since this seems to be my biggest clutter problem at the moment. It’s amazing how much non-essential mail (you know, stuff that isn’t bills or important info from wherever) and other paper clutter seems to be piling up.
July 26, 2015
RCA, tablet review
RCA Nipper logo introduced in 1977 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Two weeks ago (sorry I didn’t post anything last week, I was editing convention footage and other life events) I looked at the RCA Voyager II Tablet I received for my birthday. In this week’s video I’ve had time to go over it and (this time without convention commentary) here is the full review of the tablet.
July 13, 2015
general organizing/cleaning articles
Yeah, little joke there.
I explain the reasons in the video below, but I needed a new tablet for ConnectiCon. Since my birthday is today my dad, knowing I’m still low on funds, bought me a table for an early birthday present, the RCA Voyager II. This one is a Walmart version, and has Walmart apps installed. I’ll do a proper review when I’ve had more time to use it, but it was quite helpful for what I knew I needed at the convention.
July 5, 2015
general organizing/cleaning articles
A child holds the American flag during an Independence Day celebration (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
I spent the Fourth Of July (alias Independence Day) at my cousin’s lake cabin. It was relaxing, especially the boat ride. It’s what I needed going into ConnectiCon, a three-day event that I’m going to have to drive an hour for all three days due to having no money for even room share or a cheap motel. I also need the rest of the week to prepare for it. That means there won’t be a normal post this or next week. This should hopefully be the last disruption for a while but in a year where disruption has been the norm I can’t say for certain. Keep tackling that clutter though, folks, and I’ll be joining you again soon.
June 28, 2015
Al Milgrom, DC Comics, Firestorm, Gerry Conway, Professor Martin Stein, Ronnie Raymond
In the last two seasons of Super Friends/Super Powers Team, a new DC hero joined the team. His name was Firestorm, soon to become my second favorite DC hero (Superman being #1 and as much as I love Batman he’s #3–which may be heresy nowadays but so be it). When I picked up Fury Of Firestorm #16 it was locked. Suffice it to say the current “New 52” version took too long to get the formula right. The idea of a hero that could not only turn things into other things but had a mentor in his head was a cool idea to young me and gave older me a bit of inspiration in a character I’ve created.
Before Fury, however, was the original Firestorm, The Nuclear Man comic in 1978, co-created by writer Gerry Conway and artist Al Milgrom. I’ve already reviewed the individual issues that make up this trade and I will link to those reviews at the end of the article. For this review we will focus on the trade collection put together by DC and released in 2011, but first some catch-up for anyone new to the composite hero.