Sunday, April 13, 2014

A Sunday in Augusta

There is nothing like a Sunday at the Masters.  Golf, folks, golf.  I am talking about golf.  The Masters is a tournament played in Augusta, Georgia and is the first major championship of the golf season.  Augusta is one of the if not the most elite golf course in the country.  It is arguably one most beautiful and historic courses in the world. 
Foot bridge over Ray's Creek

(L to R) Palmer, Player, Nicklaus
For decades the tournament is made or lost on this final day.  Great golfers have won and lost on this, the final day in this tumultuous tournament.  This tournament has given us the likes of Jack Nicklaus, Gary Player, Arnold Palmer, Ben Hogan, Sam Sneed and way to many more to go on.  For years there has been a tradition of honorary tournament openers.  This year was Player, Palmer and Nicklaus.
The Green Masters Jacket

The International Olympic Committee decided to add golf to the agenda for the summer Olympics in 2016.  I laugh.  No matter if you become Olympic champion or not, the most coveted prize in all of the sport is the Green Jacket. The Green Jacket is only given once a year to the sole winner of the Masters. (stupid idea on the IOC's part if you ask me) Several players have won multiple times and theoretically multiple jackets, but in total only 49 have been awarded.

Bubba Watson
This year is nothing different.  Stories and legends are made on this day.  Today the two highest golfers on the leader board are Bubba Watson and 20-year-old Jordan Spieth.  I love me some Bubba but if Jordan wins, he takes a title from Tiger Woods for the youngest player to ever win the Masters.  I am really, really happy about that idea.  There are many others who were in contention including 54 year old Fred Couples.  This year was kind of strange in that so may big names did not make it through the cut Friday and into weekend play. 

Jordan Spieth
Birdies and Bogeys followed both of the leaders and many others were making a run on the leader board.  As Bubba began to Birdie, Jordan began to Bogey.  I am sad for the new kid but I love me some Bubba.  Many climbed and some fell.  This is an average Sunday at the Masters.  Congrats to all who played, you are all winners. 

For all of my life I have had this impression of golfers to be that of stuffy old guys.  No matter if they were in their 20's they seemed old.  Then came Rickie Fowler, Bubba Watson, Ben Crane and Hunter Mahan~ The Golf Boys.  The Boys are awesome.  They are a younger generation breaking all of the norms I think of about golfers.  The Golf Boys are all professional golfers and they have made two music videos.  I like the second more than the first. 

Check them out here:

To my rant.......WTF CBS?!?!?!?!?!? Where the hell is the theme song for the Masters?!?!?!?  They have a damn YouTube video for this song.  It was written in 1981 ESPECIALLY for the Masters.  When every other network was broadcasting all week they used the song.  WHERE THE HELL IS IT ON SUNDAY?!?!?!?!  BOO HISS! If you also noticed it was missing tweet CBS here:

Friday, April 11, 2014

The Muppets

My love for the Muppets,  Sesame Street and Fraggle Rock began at an early age as it does for most folks. At about the age of six I played Cookie Monster in a rendition of  Cookie Monster and the Cookie Tree.  See the photo.  That is me in my mom's blue bathrobe with a ton of pillows. 
(L to R) Amber, Jenni, Me, Susannah, Julie

I have been a die hard fan my whole life and I plan to continue. The statement "I thought we were in this thing together" ~ Fozzie Bear The Great Muppet Caper is one I use in my everyday life and believe it to be an important mantra for any and all teamwork. 

From the beginning, celebrities have been a part of the Muppets.  John Denver was probably the most frequent guest of the Muppet show in the 70's and even collaborated together to make one of my favorite Christmas albums.   The celebrity guest list of both Sesame Street and the Muppet Show is a group of who's who if the late 70's, early 80's and even today.  You have musicians, Superman, droids, vampires, Rambo and even James Bond made an appearance. 
There are the cast lists for both the Muppet show and for Sesame Street.   Totally check them out.  I remember many of these guest appearances but not all.  I have to get out my original Muppet show on DVD.  

Jim Henson died in 1990 and things in the Muppet universe changed a bit.  Henson, as the originator of all things Muppet carried the theme of love and understanding through the various universes he created. There have been several incarnations of the Muppets since then and Sesame Street continues to educate children worldwide.  I confess I do not watch Sesame Street any longer but I do watch all of the Muppet movies.  

In the last few years there have been two Muppet movies come out.  I loved The Muppets that came out in 2011. It was sweet and funny and reminded me of the original Muppet Movie.  The other movie just came out and was Muppets; Most Wanted.  I have thought about this quite a bit and I have been trying to figure out why I liked Muppets so much more.  Unfortunately, I feel that the most recent movie, Most Wanted while funny was missing one thing, Heart.

The Muppets which was written by Jason Segal was far Superior to Most Wanted.  Perhaps it was Segal, perhaps it was something else.  Either way, I hope that they bring back Jason Segal to be a writer on the next picture.  I think he provided what was lost with Henson's death, Heart.  To me, love, compassion and humor are what make the Muppets so special.  I liked Most Wanted but I hope the next incarnation has more love and compassion.  Think Fraggle Rock instead of Pixar flicks.
Fraggle Rock cast

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

...Isn't That Stan Lee?

It was a warm summer day and I was at a convention in a hotel trying to go from one floor to another. Turning a corner to get on an escalator I was blown past in a Flash.  There was a guy running past me and taking a running leap onto the escalator in front of me.  He was fallowed by an entourage.  A bit miffed, I took a serious look and OMG that Flash was Stan Lee.  How old is he again and taking a running leap on an escalator?!?!?!?!?

This was another assignment for the League.  Please check out these other bloggers and their stories here:

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Cool Story, Bro...Oscar Style

Once upon a time I was a 'Ringer" LOLOL I have been a 'Ringer' for decades and continue to be one.  One of the coolest things I have been a part of as a Ringer was at the Oscar party for Return of The King.  The website has long been home to everything Tolkien.  Every year one of the Lord of the Rings or Hobbit movies are nominated for an Academy Award TheOneRing puts on an Oscar party.  I have attended several of these parties.

The tickets for the party for Return of the King, or the Return of the One Party, went on sale online and were sold out only minutes later.  I was one of the lucky ones who was able to get a ticket.  I was headed back to Hollywood.  These parties have been costume or black tie events.  I packed my finery, got my hair done and hit LA.

The party is filled with other Ringers and people who wish they were Ringers.  We partied, played games and watched the Oscars mount up as the evening went on.  Some time later after all of the awards had been handed out, the V.I.P.'s started to arrive.  These were the folks that had something to do with the production of the movie.  From Costume Designers to Actors, there were dozens of people who came to party with those who loved their work.
The artisans came to thank us for loving what they have made, and we came to thank them for making it.

When we first arrived at the party we were all checked for ID and given an a bracelet letting the staff know we belonged there.  Even if you were cosplaying Galadriel and doing it well, you were required specific credentials.  WOO HOO for security.  After the awards were over and we were waiting for the V.I.P.'s to arrive I went out in the hall and watched them arrive through a side door.  What I saw was kind of curious.  I saw a woman who was dressed to the nines try to get in at the V.I.P. door and security would not let her in...she was not on the list.  She looked a lot like Oprah Winfrey.  As the night went on I forgot about the incident as I partied.

Fast forward to the next day in one of the zillion airports I was at trying to get home.  I was reading all of the papers I could get my hands on and the party was mentioned in several.  Many of them stated that The Return of the One Party was the place to be after the Oscars.  HEE HEE I was there......  Then on one of the TVs was Oprah on her show talking about Oscar night and all of the parties.  She talked about this party that she could not get into because she did not have a ticket.....heeeeee heeeee I did see her, I thought it was someone that looked like her.  LOLOL I got into a party that would not let Oprah into.  I thought that was CRAZY!

This story is an assignment for The League.  Our theme was Cool Story, Bro.  Check out other stories here:

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Twisted Terror Con

This weekend I went to a first ever convention in Sacramento, California.  Twisted Terror Con.  There was not a lot to this con.  There was one merchandise or vendor room that also housed some celebrities and one room that played random horror movies.  That is it.  Nothing else.  Here is a breakdown of my experience:

Saturday 10 am  Check-in at the Con
The check-in desk did not have any list of names for the people who had pre-paid.  I had purchased a VIP pass and they did not even ask for my name or ID to show that I had purchased.  They just gave me a badge and off I went.

Saturday 10:15 The Vendor or Merch Room
There were a lot of vendors that were not really set up yet but the celebrities were there and were happy to have us.  The vendors that were there and ready were fun and different from other Cons...more gothic and horror related.  As for the celebrities, there were some folks worth mentioning:
Sean Whalen, Nicholas Brendon, Josh Stewart, Jim O'Rear, Michael Berryman, Tyler Mane and Tony Moran Erin Gray and Gil Gerard.  There were others but these are the bigger names.

I met with Gil Gerard, Buck Rogers.  WOW what a charismatic and fun guy.  Totally cool, if you get a chance to stop by a table at a con with him it is well worth your time.  I then went across the room and saw Erin Gray.  Classy, classy lady.  Did you know not only was she Wilma Deering on Buck Rogers, she is all over the place and can be found in Silver Spoons and episodes of The Guild?  While talking to her  I found out she is the agent for several actors including Felicia Day.  Very cool lady.  Same as with Gil, I recommend taking the time to stop by and take a moment to have your picture taken or get an autograph.  I have to say I am kind of confused at the pattern of the room.  Gil and Erin, best known for Buck Rogers were not on the same side of the room.  There were two groups from the Walking Dead and they were no where near each other either.  Odd.
11:00 Movie room  (I might be generous...we might have been out of the merch hall by 10:30).
We have finished the vendor hall and decided to watch some of the horror shorts.  The tech was set up well with no issues and we watched 4 shorts that were less than 20 minutes each.  The best was by far a short called Found.  The movie was about a group of people and a school called the Found Footage Institute.  It was great.

12:30 There was nothing else to do.  We and some friends left the hotel and went to a comic book store for the rest of the afternoon.

8:15 pm The  VIP party  We got a beer and hung out.....nothing going on at all...
8:30 Got a game of King of Tokyo going on in the lobby.
9:00 Some girl ran by us pointing and screaming "Honey, look there are Nerds" down the hallway.
9:15 Started an EPIC game of Munchkin.

Sunday 1:00 am smoking in the parking lot, nothing else going on.
1:15 back to the room to read a Steampunk novel.
9:30 Breakfast in the Hotel lounge.
10:30 check to see if we won anything in the Raffle-we won 2 used DVD's.  WOO HOO~ = /
11:00 Check out and headed home.

So all in all, there was nothing going on here.  We bought a poster from Gil Gerard which we had him and Erin Gray sign.  Well worth the money to go and meet these awesome folks, as for the money to get into the con... not so much.  There was NOTHING other than the viewing room and dealers room.  No panels, no anything.  There was so much potential and I feel kind of let down.  We had a great time with friends playing games and Keith, the hotel bartender was awesome.  Hopefully next year they will have more going on.