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Top Ten: Things I Disliked About the 2nd Hobbit Movie

the-hobbit-desolation-of-smaug-movie-poster As a Lord of the Rings fangirl, I loved The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug. But it is my least favorite of all the movies. The first Hobbit movie was so much better in my eyes, even though it gives my friends fits when I say so. I saw the movie twice in theaters and still didn’t feel like I could write a proper review. I felt so let down during the movie. It’s full of great moments I loved (see next week’s list), but my overall feeling each time I walked out of theaters was disappointment. So I waited until I could watch it again at home before writing up a list.


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Oh Netflix, You Think You’re So Clever

I love Netflix, don’t get me wrong. But sometimes their recommendation algorithms are a little… hinky.

More like Thor: The Dark World? Well, you’ve got the first Thor movie–that makes sense. You’ve got some other action/adventure-type movies. You’ve got some movies starring Chris Hemsworth and others with Natalie Portman. All of that makes sense. And the latter reason explains this next bit, but when I put Thor: The Dark World on my list, I was NOT expecting Netflix to recommend Sesame Street: Abby and Friends: P Is For Princess:

One of these things is not like the others…

Just goes to show that even Netflix has trouble with the superhero movie genre. Is it action? Is it adventure? Is it sci-fi? Uh, better just to be safe and recommend movies with the same actors.

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Top Ten: Fandom Merch I Don’t Want for Christmas

When searching online I found far too many fan-made or non-commercially produced fandom products that creeped me out from Edward Cullen’s giant face staring at me from a shower curtain to inappropriately printed thongs. So I decided that all the items on this list had to be officially licensed items.

Top Ten Things I Will Not Enjoy Receiving as Christmas Gifts:

  1. Planet of the Apes Sky Diving Parachutist- Did I miss the part of the movies where the apes sky dive?
  2. I Heart Ron Weasley Pillowcase- I love Ron… but not in these dress robes, of all things. Also, I already own one of these
  3. Thor Alarm Clock Weight- Why does a god need a weight? And why would you make an alarm clock shaped like one? Hammer, guys. Thor’s got a hammer, not a weight *facepalm* And Thor doesn’t even need to sleep. Double-fail.
  4. Downton Abbey Lip Gloss- Because when I watch Downton Abbey, the one thing I notice is the glossiness of their lips
  5. Destroyed Cassandra Doctor Who Action Figure- First off, Cassandra in her “skin” form is barely in the episode this action figure is from. Second, this isn’t an “About to be Destroyed Cassandra,” it’s a frame where the character used to be and isn’t any more. The character isn’t even alive at this point and isn’t even included.
  6. Hunger Games Lightbulb- Put a bird on it! I saw this at Toys R Us a few weeks ago. It was super cheap but even that wasn’t enough to make me buy it. I don’t have the faintest idea what I’d do with such a thing
  7. JarJar Binks Lollipop- First off, it’s JarJar, and who needs that? Second, did anyone in charge of creating this even imagine what it would look like to suck on his tongue? I do NOT want anyone to be that intimate with JarJar.
  8. Star Trek Metal Detector- Oh dear. It looks vaguely Enterprise-like. But I’m not sure what this has anything to do with Star Trek. But there’s not a lot that’s less pathetic than a metal detector
  9. Twilight Perfume- “The Forbidden Fruit Tastes the Sweetest”. First off all, ick. Second of all, am I supposed to be eating this perfume? Double ick.
  10. Ugly Duncan Mug- I’ve got a Highlander bathrobe, a Highlander golf cap, a Highlander wallet (actually, two, because my first one accidentally went through the wash). But even I can’t handle the Ugly Duncan Mug with the katana & ponytail handle
    Above photo is from Gail Kallen’s great AA Con Photos gallery

Craft: Harry Potter Pin Fail

Far more people RSVPed for the annual DADA (Harry Potter Meetup) Yule Party this year, which means I am scrambling to fill Christmas crackers (which, I hope, I’ll feel up to assembling tomorrow after my trip to the hospital for another test). Which meant that I once again attempted to make pins. There was more desperation in this attempt, so I kept working until I got some right. I found a fantastic tutorial. However, I ruined a whole lot of supplies in the process, which was painful but a good lesson for me to learn. I’m used to trying something, getting it right, and moving on. I’m not used to having such a high learning curve and wasting money and time in the process.

Me: 6
Badge-a-Minit: 14

Fail! Luckily, I found a few from last year, so I will definitely have enough for all the crackers now. What a relief!

Category: crafts, fail, merch  Tags: , , ,  2 Comments

I am a Watcher

“I am a watcher,
part of a secret society of men and women
who observe and record, but never interfere.
We know the truth about immortals”

Never interfere? Never? *snort*
Were you watching the same TV show I was?

One of these days, I’m going to find my Watcher necklace. In high school, I never went a day without wearing it. Which, looking back, might be one of a hundred reasons I didn’t date much in high school. Or maybe I just hadn’t found the right Highlander fan to share my passion with back then. I’m sure I didn’t get rid of the necklace… but I haven’t been able to find it for years. I suspect it’s in some box from my storage unit I haven’t gone through yet.

Until I find it, I will have to resort to showing my love for my all-time favorite television program, Highlander: the series, in the form of wall art. I am now the proud owner (and displayer) of a carved, wooden Watcher symbol.


Looks great up there on the wall, doesn’t it? Yeah, well, it didn’t have the easiest path there.

I first saw it years ago at a store at the Maryland Renaissance Festival. As the show’s last episode was in 1998, it’s not often that you encounter Highlander merch these days. I was drawn to it immediately. I was at the faire with a friend who was purchasing an item at a different shop for her house, and I decided to make myself a promise: as soon as I bought my own house, I would buy the Highlander Watcher’s symbol and hang it over my door. Every year at the faire, I spotted the symbol, lusted after it, but stayed true to my promise. After all, what good is a lovely, crafted, wooden anything without somewhere decent to display it?

Finally, last year I bought my own house. I still haven’t had a housewarming party… because I still haven’t moved in completely or unpacked. I suspect all my friends and coworkers have given up hope by now. But it is one of my 101 Things in 1001 Days, so there’s still a good chance one day they will all be invited over eventually. Anyway, last year I skipped going to the Maryland Renaissance Festival because I was sick the weekend all my friends were going. I thought longingly about the Watcher symbol I wanted to buy, but decided my dream could wait a year. After all, at that point in time, I wasn’t living in my new house yet so it didn’t really feel like mine yet.

WoodenCarvings1 WoodenCarvings2

This year, I missed out on going as well. And, in fact, two friends went and I only realized afterward that I should have asked them to buy the item for me. The thought hadn’t even occurred to me. I had such tunnel vision: drive all the way to the faire, buy the Watcher’s symbol, hang out with friends, then drive home. It didn’t occur to me that there could be a variation of that which might work better for me, especially as my recent health issues are preventing me from eating anything sinfully delicious on a stick. However, when I heard another friend was going the following day, I seized the opportunity. At practically the last minute, I sent an email asking if she might be able to pick the item up for me. I included photos I’d taken of it on previous visits, including one photo with the item circled, so she would know exactly what I wanted.

And, because she is a great friend and a wonderful person, she picked it up for me! It is beautiful–everything I had hoped for all these years. Aaaaaaand now I think we have more evidence of why I’m not dating now. The point is, I am now the proud owner of a wooden Watcher symbol to be displayed… um… over my door? There was a spot right above my door that was perfect for it. For months now I’ve envisioned that spot being filled with it. But now that I had it… the spot above my television set was looking like an even better choice. I liked the irony involved in having a Watcher symbol above something I watched Highlander on. And I didn’t want anything too busy above the TV, such as a poster or something, that would detract from the television screen. Still… above the door… I’d imagined that for years! I ended up asking friends and even asking the highlander worldwide Yahoo group for advice. In the end, I went with the spot over the television set. Which, of course, you know because of the image above.

WatcherSymbolI used some strong command adhesive strips to mount it on the wall, in case I ever wanted to easily take it down again. I carefully measured so that it was dead center and I stuck it on the wall. It stayed. And I was thrilled. I took a few photos and called it a job well done. Then I headed into my office/craft room to write. About twenty minutes later, I hear a loud THUNK. With a terrible feeling that I knew exactly what that was, I returned to my living room to find the symbol gone and hiding so far behind the television cabinet I couldn’t see or reach it. After reaching between the cable box and DVD player shelves, I managed to dislodge it from the cables and roll it to the side enough for me to reach it. I surveyed the situation for a moment, considering my options. I had brought a nail and hammer up from downstairs, but for some idiotic reason, I decided to give the command strips one more try. So I went to stick it back up and discovered the fall had cracked it slightly! It’s not noticeable at all, thankfully, but I felt just awful for damaging it. Carefully eyeballing the location, I put it back on the wall, pressing harder this time, holding for longer this time. And this time it stayed in place. I was thrilled. I returned to my NaNoNovel and continued writing, but not before I put two blankets behind the television set. There was little chance of it falling again, but just in case it did, I wanted to keep it from breaking a second time. About fifteen minutes later, there was a soft thunk. There it was, behind the television, resting on the blankets. For my third attempt, I drove a nail into my beautiful wall and sucked up the damage. It’s worth it, though. The thing has not fallen since and I think it looks great mounted there. I see it every time I enter or leave my house, as it’s just to the side of my front door. So even though it’s not directly above the door, it’s still got a great presence and I’m thrilled with my decision.

Category: fail, tv show  Tags: , ,  2 Comments

Sleeping with the Television On

No, this post isn’t going to be about the obscure Billy Joel song that inspired me to create an original character based off it. This post is about my attempt at watching some television a few nights ago.

I turned on my bedroom television set to its default station: BBC America. I actually had to go with a high-end cable package because LOGO And BBCA are two televisions stations I can’t do without. With BBC America, whenever I turn it on, it’s either Top Gear, Chef Gordon Ramsey swearing, or Star Trek: the next generation. Basically, I like my odds, even though I wouldn’t say its offerings are always British. In fact, my kindred spirit emailed BBC America once asking why an American show was being offered. I expected them to throw out the Patrick Stewart card as justification. Instead, they replied “While we understand this is not a British show, Star Trek is a massive fan favorite around the world – particularly in the UK.” Huh. We’re American. We can watch American shows any time we want. Just because the British also happen to like it is not a particularly valid reason to put it on a British programming channel! LOL


Anyway, when I turned on the television as I was getting ready for bed, the first Highlander movie was on. It was half-over, but on. Like Star Trek: TNG, you have to work to justify why it’s on BBC America (and right after it? a marathon of Star Trek: TNG, naturally), but I was happy to see it.

I watched a bit of it, then thought up a good few lines for a NaNoWriMo piece I’d been working on. So I went back downstairs and wrote them down. I got back to the movie just as the big fight scene was starting. I had awesome timing. I slid into bed and watched Connor climbing up to rescue Brenda… and the next thing I knew, the two were in Scotland. Somehow I’d closed my eyes and slept through the entire fight scene (which is not particularly short, mind you). I was rather embarrassed.

TNGcombadgeI then proceeded to watch the episode of Star Trek: TNG on next. Having just rewatched the entire series twice, it took me about 2 seconds to figure out which episode it was and to shout out “Nightbird!” with Counselor Troi when Riker asks for requests. But I didn’t make it a minute further before falling back to sleep, this time for good.