Sunday, May 31, 2009

Monday Morons--these numbers don't seem right to me

Okay, so when you go to check your email, all this news stuff pops up. Like, wouldn't you rather read one of these stories before you read your email. Actually, no. If came here to read my email, then I want to read my email. If I had wanted to watch the news, I would be in the other room watching the news, or maybe I would have Googled a particular news story when I came in here.

But once in a while I do go back and click on one of the stories. Yesterday, there was something about making money in your spare time, and I like money just as much as the next person, so I looked. I have looked at this sort of thing before, and it usually turns out to be nothing that is useful to me.The particular thing I read yesterday is here. And I got a little annoyed, because I happen to know a little bit about a few of these things.

The first item suggested that if you become a part-time baker that you could sell cupcakes for $2 each, and that if the business was successful that you could make an extra 40K a year for working ten to twenty hours a week, and that if you really wanted to get into that sort of thing you should consider renting space in a professional kitchen.

It doesn't say anything about actually needing a professional kitchen, because the Health Department probably won't give you a permit to work out of your house. I've never wanted to be a professional baker, but I do happen to know about that because the Health Department came and canceled our little community bake sale, even a month after we asked for a temporary permit and we were originally told it would be okay. And I doubt that the ten or twenty hours per week includes the time it actually takes to sell the baked goods, or the time it would take to transport the items to someone who would sell the stuff for you, and then of course you would have to split the profits with other people. So an average of ten to twenty hours a week making an average 40K sounds a bit unreasonable, even if you do happen to have a professional kitchen and have permits and such.

The second item suggested becoming a professional blogger. Even after saying that few bloggers make enough to earn a living and that most earn nothing at all, it then suggests that writing for a few hours everyday you could earn an average of 24K a year. What numbers are used to come up with this average? All bloggers, or just those that consider themselves "professional", or all those that happen to make any money at all? My husband tried to make money blogging. He had a couple of blogs that he spent a lot of time on, and he ended up with about five hundred dollars a year. One year he really put some extra effort into it, had five blogs going, and wrote about not what he cared about but whatever dumb thing was on Google Trends, usually something about "naked pictures of ___________" to get more people to look at his blog. And it sort of worked, even though he didn't even have the "naked pictures of __________", he just mentioned that people were talking about it. So more people came to his blog, and he made about a thousand dollars that year. He's now back down to five hundred, and only working regularly on the one blog.

So we know from experience that writing a few hours a day is unlikely to result in making 24K a year, and I suspect we are not in the minority.

The third item was also something that we have tried. The article suggests that for several hours a week you could sell stuff on eBay and have average sales of 22K a year. At least it did say average sales and not average profit. At one point the eBay stuff was taking almost as much time as our regular jobs, and the profit never got much over four thousand dollars a year.

I know nothing of being a professional flower arranger, but the article suggested that for three to twenty hours a week an average of 21K in sales was possible.

At home jewelry making on evenings and weekends and spending between five hundred and two thousand dollars on materials and tools was said to result in an average sales of 30K per year. I know someone who does this sort of thing and doesn't do anything near that. Also, I used to have a reader in England who had a degree in art and had planned jewelry making as a career, and last I heard she had no luck with it.

Pet sitters were mentioned as making an average of 22K a year, mostly on weekends and holidays and some evenings. While I do know that some people are paid a lot of money to do this, the people who make the big bucks are practically nurses. You usually don't get paid a living wage to go and play with someone else's dog, but you could make some money if you were able to give shots to diabetic cats and such.

Then we come to part-time photographers who make 26K a year, mostly on weekends and evenings. Now that is something we really know something about, as my husband has been a full-time photographer for more than ten years now. Until about three years ago, he made less than 26K a year, and that was for between 40 and 70 hours a week. You're probably not going to make that much money in addition to your regular job. And of course, if your regular job is as a photographer, your probably already working evenings and weekends for somebody else.

Interpreters and translators were said to make an extra 21K. I always thought that people who spoke a second language would have cool jobs and/or make extra money. But most of what I see are a lot of people who speak Spanish who have the same dumb job that I have or they work at Walmart or something. And they usually don't get paid extra to translate, they are just expected to drop what they are doing and come and talk to other people who can't be bothered to learn English. Lately some of the jobs I would have wanted have started listing Spanish preferred or even Spanish required, but the pay rate has not gone up, just with the new requirement I am no longer qualified for the job.

T-shirt vendors were said to make 48K a year after an investment of about a thousand dollars. I've never tried this, but again it sounds too easy, and I wonder how many people lost money trying to start a business so that the average ends up being 48K.

Web designers were also said to make an average of 42K. I know some people who do this, but nowhere near that kind of money or they would quit their regular jobs.

I think the people who are really making money from these part-time business are the people who sell the thousand dollars or so of start-up materials and equipment.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Gardening math

Okay, so it is now Saturday, and I had hoped to finish dealing with the other big mound of dirt by today. I didn't make it. And it hasn't started raining yet, so there is still some time left to go out and work on the thing and maybe get some work done before everything is a big muddy mess, but I know that whatever happens that I will still not get it finished today. I have worked on this a lot yesterday and the day before, and while I was quite sure that I had put just as much work into this one as I had on the last one, I have only got about half of the work done.

And while I was sitting there being disappointed at having so little to show for my efforts, it suddenly occurred to me that there was no mystery as to why the thing was no where near being finished. And it didn't mean that I had only put in half the time and work of the earlier project.

I was looking at where the other mound had been, and how that dirt had mostly ended up being contained in what looks to me like about a four by five foot garden bed. Not a very good working garden bed, but there's more work to be done on it next year to actually get food to grow in it properly. No, the idea was just to get the dirt moved to the proper place and make it look like part of the garden and not just the odd mound of dirt, and to cover the place where that part of the garden will be next year, and to not have to have grass growing in that spot and not have to mow it.

So there is this mound of dirt that was moved to the four by five spot, or close to it, and that took two days of really hard work, not counting the time spent putting the boards together and painting them and such. The mound that I am working on now is a bit bigger, and the place that I am moving the dirt to is about four feet by twelve feet, and so far it looks like that is a good guess as to how big it will be. So if my guess for this one is accurate, this mound is about twice as big as the other one, so it would take twice as long and need four days of hard work instead of just two.

Okay, that was obvious, wasn't it? I don't know why I didn't think of that before. But I do feel a bit better now that I think about it, and not just beating myself up for not doing enough work on the thing.

Other silly things are happening with the garden. For one thing, it has only just now occurred to me that it is time to water the stuff regularly. It had rained so much that I had only watered once or twice a week. In the spring you don't water everyday, and sometimes you don't even water every other day. In the spring you think, it rained the day before yesterday, so I don't need to water anything today. But when it gets warmer in the summer, even if it did rain the day before yesterday, unless it just rained all day you need to check the plants. And of course I didn't, so I lost a few of the smaller things, but that's okay. Anyway, the soaker hoses are all in place now, so I'll water every other day when it doesn't rain, and soon I'll water everyday. And sometimes I might even end up watering twice a day. It gets that hot sometimes.

I was so sure that the new bed was going to grow most of the things that I actually wanted to eat that I wasted most of the space in the second garden bed with some odd and mostly ornamental stuff. So I don't have much in the way of stuff like lettuce and carrots. The mound of dirt that now looks like a four by five garden is about a fourth filled with onions, which should be fine. Another fourth is just stuff that looks good growing, but I don't actually eat much of, like turnips. Then another fourth of it was going to be the second attempt at lettuce and carrots and spinach, but for some reason, only the lettuce seemed to have sprouted, and now half of that isn't doing well either. And I don't think that I have the rabbits to blame either, as the stuff was probably too small for them to notice, and if they were going to eat something I'd think that they would have gone at the chard first, which they haven't. So I think that the lettuce just didn't like that spot, and I think now that it is a bit warm and it is probably just too late to try again.

Anyway, when I finish up with the second mound, it isn't going to be nice lettuce and carrots either. It needs to be something that will grow quickly and look like a garden, even if it isn't something that I eat much of. So I think that it will end up being some radishes (which I do eat) and possibly a lot of beans, which I also eat, but just not a whole bed full of them. But they have big sprouts and will quickly look like something instead of just a bunch of boards around some dirt.

Something really odd happened with the beans in the first mound. I bought some beans along with the turnips seeds and radish seeds and such, and I planted them, and then I had a little bit of space left and I filled in the space with eight beans that I got out of the kitchen. Now, in nature, seeds don't all sprout all at the same time. About half of the seeds are sort of programed to sprout in the season the year after they were grown. Then about half of what is left will sprout the year after that, with most of the other half sprouting on the third year, but a few will sprout maybe on the fourth or fifth year. So that way, if there is a drought or something one year, the seeds that were dormant the first year will make plants the second or third year. Otherwise, a drought could just wipe out all the plants forever. But when you buy seeds at a store, most of them have been treated so that they sprout whenever you plant them.

So it is very odd that the bean seeds that I bought as seeds and should have sprouted within a few days of being planted have not, while all eight of the kitchen beans have sprouted and are now almost a foot tall.

Anyway, as the beans I got from the kitchen are a different type of bean, and they did not come with planting instructions, I don't know if they are bush beans or pole beans or what. So I don't know if I have planted them in a good spot or if they will die for not having enough space or not having anything to climb on or not. But right now it is a green plant and it makes the dirt look like a garden instead of just a spot where I let the grass die, and that is the main thing that I care about for that spot this year.

Other than that, the tomato plants look well enough, and the one squash plant looks good and the other one is stunted. The third one never even sprouted, so I'll probably put a flower or something in the empty spot. There are pill bugs everywhere, which according to everything I've read are not supposed to be a problem, because they are only supposed to eat dead plants. Well, I think what I've read is wrong, and while they are eating dead leaves and such they then decide to eat sprouts and such that are nearby. So I think that is what happened with one of the squash plants. Anyway, I'll know better next year.

Friday, May 22, 2009

We don't need no stinking badges Part 2

Yesterday, I sent off for my first free Kellogg's Star Trek T-shirt. I asked for a medium size blue one. I hope that I wear medium, and the blue one probably looks the most like something that was worn on the show. At least, that is what I think. We can't really be sure, because I have yet to see any actual photos of the shirts.

This month we ate three boxes of Corn Pops, a box of Frosted Shredded Wheat, a box of Cheeze-its, and about six packages of Fudgeshoppe cookies. In addition to that I bought another box of crackers, five boxes of Cheeze-its, a box of Eggo waffles, and I'm not sure how many boxes of cereal. I have enough tokens to mail off for the second shirt. Possibly, I have enough tokens to send off for the third shirt. And I have fourteen assorted badges, which are mostly command and engineering, but I got an extra Romulan and traded it for a Klingon. So now I have all five badges.

I have the science badge.

So now the question is, do I keep it or put it on eBay and try to get fifty dollars for it.

And the other question is, should I buy some more cereal and such and get a fourth or fifth shirt, or maybe more badges?

I found one science badge. Maybe there's another one out there.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

I should have two or three days of normal

Or, I should have two or three days of what passes for normal around here. I want to get started on the Harry Potter stuff, but what I really should be doing for the two or three days is gardening. It will probably rain on Saturday, and I should try to move that big mound of dirt before then.

The new Terminator movie will start today. We won't be promoting that. It would have been fun, and I think that one of our group could have made us up to look like were were cyborgs who had been in a fight, with bits of metal showing where the skin had come off of our faces, and a glowing red light where an eye was supposed to be. And then we could stage a few fights and hit each other with rubber props.

There would have been two major obstacles to this plan, even if other people had wanted to do it. One, unfortunately most of us are not the physical type to play terminators. We have a couple of really young good looking girls, but they have jobs that keep them very busy on weekends. I can't think of any real buff guys in our group. We have a couple who are really tall, and maybe we could have given them shoulder pads or something to make them look more muscular, but that's about it. So we have maybe four people who would look really good doing this sort of thing, except that they're very busy and can't be expected to do that much work on a weekend, much less that much work by themselves. The rest of us are not in such good physically shape, and would not make the most believable terminators, even with glowing red lights and such.

The second major obstacle is that I would want to volunteer anyway, but would probably regret it later. If I whine this much about gardening, think how bad I would feel after a weekend of staged fights.

So it sucks a bit that we won't be doing anything for that, but it is only two weeks after Star Trek, and I doubt that many people would be up for this sort of thing again so soon. What sucks even more is that I won't be seeing the movie today, or tomorrow, or even Saturday. My husband works these next three days, and the scheduling is such that I don't think we can see a show before he has to leave for work. Neither of us were up for the midnight show last night, so it will just have to wait til Sunday or Monday.

Unless I want to lie about it and see it without him, which I don't.

Harry Potter is less than two months away, and I can't seem to get anyone going on that one. We all know that we're promoting this movie, and a lot of us already have costumes. But I don't know what we have in the way of props, and they are not going to magically come into being the week of the movie. If we are going to build something, we need to get started now. And I'm sure that we have little things around, some Halloween decorations and such that would be helpful, but we need to get it all out of storage and look at it and decide what to do with it.

I have twice tried to get some discussions going on the subject. First, I posted a message about needing to look at what we have and decide what else we might need. I was mainly talking about props, but I mostly got replies about what people were going to wear. I know most of them already have their costumes, and that is why we were asked to do this. But we need to figure out what we're going to do with the table. I don't think that our normal Star Trek and other sci-fi stuff is going to work for that weekend. I sent a second message out telling people were they could buy a graduation gown if they didn't already have a costume. I got no replies on that one. I hope that means that everyone already has something to wear.

The main thing that we have decided is that the movie starts on Wednesday, but we will not be working all five days. We'll do what we can on Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday. We just aren't up for Thursday and Sunday too.

I guess that I should brush up on my Harry Potter stuff and borrow the movies from my brother.

But enough of that for now. Back to the gardening.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Why do I feel so bad?

So now it has been more than a month since I did any serious gardening, and while some of the plants themselves are doing quite well, and about half of the garden is doing what I hoped it would do, the backyard in general looks pretty bad. It is time to deal with that other big mound of dirt.

Okay, step one in dealing with the big mound of dirt is to nail some boards together and paint them and move them to where they will contain the dirt.

Step one is not that hard. It is no big deal. It is something that I've done often enough that I mostly know what I am doing, and it is not usually something that is physically difficult. These particular boards are relatively thin and about four feet long. Not a big deal at all to put glue on them and put clamps on them and then nail them together. And painting isn't a big deal either. And it isn't like painting a whole wall or anything. It doesn't take much of my time. I paint half of a board, watch some TV while I wait for it to dry, go and paint the second coat, watch more TV while waiting for it to dry, see if it has dried enough to move, turn it over, paint some more, watch more TV, come back and paint another coat, etc....

No big deal. Not tons of work, and the little work that does get done is broken up by a lot of time watching TV. And the painting was done outdoors, so it isn't like there's a problem with paint fumes either.

The hard work comes later. The hard work is moving the dirt and putting the dirt through the screen and making it all look neat and tidy before I add some plants.

So why when I did that last bit of painting did I suddenly feel so bad?

My legs really started to hurt, and I had hardly done any work, so that didn't quite make sense. But I got the last of it done, and went back to watching TV instead of doing the dishes and such that I had thought I would do after the painting was finished.

And then I started to feel a little sick. Well, I suppose that happens, especially with all the stuff of the busy past weekend and eating out a lot, and now this weekend we were eating out a lot again, and I haven't been careful about eating my yogurt and such. So that was going to catch up with me sooner or later, it just happened to be at the same time as my legs started hurting. Just that the legs hurting didn't make any sense.

So I take a little green pill and wait for that to work. My husband comes home, and he asks if he should go and get me anything from the store. While there is all this stuff that I should go and get from the store anyway, I don't think that I really need any of it right away. I can't think of anything that would make me feel better that I don't already have in the house if I need it. I have crackers and cookies and even chicken soup. I've already taken a pill. Maybe club soda or ginger ale would help, but I'm not really craving any of that. So I don't send him to get anything, and we just watch Medium while I wait for the pill to work. I take a different pill hoping that I will feel sleepy by the time Medium is over.

And I get lots of sleep, and I don't really feel that sick the next day, but we go and eat Chinese food anyway.

My legs still hurt. Not as bad as they did, but they hurt.

My husband decides that it is because I'm not drinking enough water. We buy some bottled water while we are out.

My legs still hurt a little bit, but I've had muscle rub and such and some more sleep and I mostly feel better. Except that the dirt will still have to be moved, and it would be best if I could get that done before Saturday when it will probably rain.

Today I am going to go and have a chocolate malt. Probably not the healthiest thing to have, but they are free at Arby's today if you buy a sandwich. I will think about moving the dirt and such later.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

More about the Star Trek movie weekend: Part III

Okay, so now it is Friday, May 8th, the day that the film officially opened. I have already seen the movie, and someone in our group had already seen it before I did and watched it again, and someone else had already seen it four times before I did. And I had spent two hours on Wednesday dressed as a Vulcan, and I had spent Thursday evening dressed as a Starfleet Deep Space Nine science officer.

So I already had the science officer uniform top in the car, and I already had the green robe and gold dress in the car. And I had my makeup and such in the car, which I forgot and left in the car so I had to go and get it out of the car and put it on, and then I put that stuff back in the car. So I thought that I had everything that I would need in the car, and I would be ready to go whenever.

But the thing was that I was supposed to go to someone's house first, so that she could make me up as a Vulcan before I went to the the theater. At first I was scheduled to be at the theater from twelve til eight, but then they changed that to four til ten. So that was fine.

And then someone my husband worked with asked us to lunch.

Okay, so should I go to my friend's house first and get the Vulcan ears put on and then just hide them during lunch? Or should I go to lunch first and then go get the Vulcan stuff done after lunch. I was totally okay with doing the first, except that I didn't think I should just show up at my friend's house that early unless she asked me to. By the time we were figuring out what to do for the day, it was almost time for lunch anyway, so we decided that after lunch would be better.

My husband's friend was a bit late, but not that late. Still, by the time I got to my friend's house I seemed to be an hour behind schedule. She told me not to worry, that putting on the ears didn't take that long. But I didn't want her to rush anything, cause I wanted to pay attention to everything so I might get the ears on by myself in the future.

So in between explaining things to me, she has to answer the phone and do her normal business, in addition to talking to other people about the weekend and what costumes they should wear and such as that.

So we get all done with the ears, and they don't look bad at all, and they don't feel bad either, which was a surprise to me. I thought gluing something to my ear would feel just as bad as the tape, but it didn't. Great. So then we deal with the eyebrows.

Wednesday, I had just put lots of brownish eyeshadow over my own eyebrows, but this time I was going to shave them off. Or, at least, I was going to shave half of them off. The funny thing was that while I was out buying stuff on Monday, I found a thing especially made to shave off parts of eyebrows. I don't think Vulcan makeup is what they had in mind when they made the thing, but I found it on clearance and I bought it anyway. So right amount of eyebrow was easier to remove than I had imagined.

It was also a bit later in the day than I had imagined. It was about an hour before I was supposed to be at the theater. It usually takes me about an hour to get there from my house, but I wasn't at my house. But then I couldn't think why I should have to go back to my house, and maybe there was an easier way to get there.

My friend suggested that at three in the afternoon the traffic wasn't that bad, and I could just go straight through Dallas on 35.

I hate Dallas.

No way. No Dallas on 35. But I did figure I could get there another way. And all went fine and I was making good time until I was nearly at the theater and I was supposed to made a left exit.

And then I somehow missed wherever I was supposed to go and ended up way north of the place before I found something I recognized and could turn around.

So I did not quite get to the theater by four, and whoever would have been able to see me then missed out. Sorry about that.

So I'm at the theater, and I'm wearing black pants and a black t-shirt, and I take in the green robe and gold dress inside and I fix my hair a bit and put on my costume.

And then I remember that I left my good shoes at home.

Well, we had a lot of discussions about what was appropriate to wear at this event, and I'm sure that my shoes would not pass inspection. But I wasn't going to go home for better shoes, and the green robe hid them most of the time anyway. And they were still black shoes, they just were just old and at some point I was wearing them while working on some project and got a bit of paint on them. I borrowed a black marker and covered up the spots of paint. Not great, but better.

So we were there greeting the customers for the seven o'clock and seven thirty shows. The woman who had seen the movie four times before I did went in to watch it for a sixth time.

I had wanted to get something from Burger King between shows, but there wasn't one around. The Klingons fed me nachos instead.
My friend who put the Vulcan ears on me had planned to come in green makeup, but something went wrong and she washed it all off. So she came by after the seven thirty show in one of the Starfleet uniforms, and she brought some of us cheeseburgers.

I can haz cheeseburger.

So we had some fun with that. And we asked people trivia questions, and the theater manager is all into it. The theater manager wants us to come back for Harry Potter. It will be fun.

One Halloween I made a sleestak costume. Well, not really a sleestak, but an Enik, so close enough. It could be better. Anyway, someone said that I should wear the costume for the opening of the Land of the Lost movie.

Not going to happen. First off, the costume is damned uncomfortable and I can't stay in it very long. And second, I have no intention of promoting that Will Ferrell movie. I want no one to pay to see this movie. I almost want to say that I hope no one sees this movie, but that isn't quite true. What would really be nice is if everyone figures out how to get to see this movie without paying for it (I have suggestions), so that they can still make fun of it without the people responsible for making the awful thing being able to make any money from it.

Okay, so we got that discussion out of the way, and went back to talking about Star Trek. And then we also talked a bit about Fringe and Terminator and Day of the Triffids. So that was fun too.

And then after the ten and ten thirty shows, I was just tired. I'm afraid that I didn't even wait for other people to pack up their stuff. I just told everyone that I'd probably see them the next day and just left.

When I got home I had to take off the Vulcan ears. Getting them off was easy enough, but that left spirit gum on my ears. And I forgot to ask if mineral oil would help with that, so I didn't buy any, and I didn't see any just already in the house. So I'm picking this dried glue stuff off of my ears before I try to get some sleep.

Saturday, I wasn't scheduled to be at the theater, but I planned to be there anyway, because there weren't as many people on the schedule for Saturday and Sunday. Still, since I hadn't promised any particular part of my time, I just stayed around the house and watched TV most of the morning and part of the afternoon. I got there in time for the four and four-thirty shows, and I decided to watch the four-thirty show myself. So that was my second time to see the movie.

Someone in my group watched it four times before I saw it the first time, so now she has seen it at least six times.

This time I was wearing the green robe, but I wore it closed without the gold dress. You wouldn't think that the gold dress would be warm at all, but somehow I wasn't that comfortable in it to start with, and later the theater had some trouble with the air-conditioner. And while the ears had been perfectly comfortable on Friday, I had rubbed my ears raw trying to get off all the dried glue, so they were a bit sensitive. So I didn't feel great on Saturday, and I left right after the ten-thirty show started and didn't help with the packing up and such.

Saturday and Sunday we had some problems with people wearing odd things. If you have ever been to a convention, you have probably seen some odd things. You have probably seen some costumes that just aren't that good, or costumes being worn when they don't fit anymore, or parody costumes. I have a parody borg costume, which I have worn to every other Star Trek movie premiere weekend since I made the thing in 1993. But I did not wear it this time because a.) I have gained some weight since I last wore it and wasn't sure how I would look in it, and b.) we were all sent emails asking us to wear only really good costumes that fit and looked like what was actually worn on the screen. So I took that to mean that we should not wear parody costumes.

Like I know this guy who wears half a Klingon costume with a kilt. He's been wearing it like that for so long, I don't think he still has the pants that originally went with it. So he got the message that his costume didn't count as a "real" Star Trek costume, and he wasn't invited to participate without pants. We have a lot of stuff like that going on. If we hadn't been specific, we would have had a lot more Klingons at this thing, but the four or five that we did have looked just perfect.

Still, other people did not take the hint. I just wanted to strangle someone who kept saying he was going to wear this shirt that was like a Starfleet uniform (only it really wasn't that much like a uniform at all). And then he wanted to wear this other thing that was just like a uniform, only it was something that they only used for Star Trek V, and I don't think that anyone would recognize it as a Star Trek costume. Finally, it is agreed that he can come dressed as Mr. Scott. Only (except for them both being fat) he doesn't look anything like Mr. Scott. Again, he doesn't have a real uniform, just some regular clothes that sort of look like some Mr. Scott wore once, and then he's wearing the next gen badge instead of the one that Mr. Scott wore. So except for the people who read the email, no one knew that he was supposed to be Mr. Scott.

And then there was a group of three who were sort of doing this parody thing of a group of people who were in an episode of the original series.

At least, I thought it was a parody. Apparently, one of the women thinks that she's really hot, and wasn't trying to make a joke. We later found out that in certain light her dress is very see-through, and you get this same problem whenever someone takes a photo with a flash.

So we found out that not only does this woman think that she's all that, she wasn't wearing a bra either. And all of these people that we had hoped to impress with our authentic costumes now have pictures of this woman in a not so great costume that is see-through and doesn't have a bra.

So some people got into it with her. But I'm sure she still doesn't get why people were upset.

Saturday night I had less glue to take off of my ears, and I had mineral oil to help with that, so Sunday my ears were not giving me any trouble. Again, I wasn't on the schedule, but there weren't that many people signed up for Sunday because it was Mother's Day. So I wanted to be there, but because it was Mother's Day, I thought that I would probably be going to lunch with some of my family, which I did.

To save time with getting my costume on after lunch, I put the Vulcan ears on before lunch and just brushed my hair in such a way that they would probably not be seen.

So I went to lunch with my family, and my brother knew that I had the ears on, but I don't think that anyone else could tell. But during lunch my mother is really looking at me, and I think that she sees them. And my brother sees us and he's laughing. But she doesn't see the ears and doesn't know what he is laughing about. She just hasn't seen me since the haircut, and she really likes it.

So my brother is still laughing, and I pull back my hair so my mom can see what he's laughing about. She tells me to put my hair back down.

My mother hates Star Trek. Odd that. My dad was all into science fiction, and she just hates it. I never got what my parents had in common before we came along.

But a long time ago, my mother didn't hate Star Trek. She didn't like it as much as my dad did, but she didn't hate it and she watched it with him. In fact, way back then, my mother did like some weird stuff, and her favorite show was One Step Beyond. But now she just really hates all of that stuff.

So we finished lunch, and she asked if I'm going with them to see my grandma for a bit. Only I have to go home and put on the costume right away if I'm going to get to the theater in time for the four o'clock show. So then I ask if she thinks I should show Grandma the costume. But then I think that is silly, since my grandma can't see that well, and I then think I should just skip it and see her later. But no, my mom says that will make her laugh and I should do that.

So I go home and put on the brown dress that I wore Wednesday night, and then I put my hair up and go to Grandma's house. Only when I get there she isn't feeling well and she's gone to sleep. But I get to see three other relatives, who all tell me how nice I look.

My mom and my brother are like, no, really look at her.

So then they see the ears and the eye makeup and are impressed. So I'm getting ready to leave, and my mom comes and grabs one of my ears. "Is it glued on?"


Really, I put the ears on hours before so I be done in time, and now she's pulling on one of them and it might come off.

But I guess that she's so happy that I'm wearing a nice modest dress instead of the borg thing or some other thing that she really hates. So I don't have time to go home and check on the ear, and I think even if it does come off that someone else at the theater will have something to fix it.

I get to the theater, and the friend with the makeup kit isn't there, but everyone else assures me that the ear damage minimal and no one will notice it.

Some people left to go to the dinner. I decided to stay at the theater. I had practically just come from lunch anyway.

The original plan for Sunday was to pack up after the seven-thirty showing, so I was going to help them do that. But then they decided to stay til ten-thirty as usual. I wasn't up for that. I went home.

We are now planning stuff to do to promote the Harry Potter film in July. We are all tired and have decided to tone it down a bit and limit it to three days.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Monday Morons--at least try to keep up with what is going on with your own little group of fellow nerds

No, I am not through writing about the Star Trek movie weekend. But I thought that I would take a break and write about something else for a bit. And I haven't written a Monday Morons post in a very long time, so you may not be familiar with this particular thing that used to be a regular feature.

Anyway, it has been a busy time for my little group of friends. Last weekend we had three things going on at once. Most of us were involved with promoting the new Star Trek movie, and that Sunday was our regularly scheduled dinner (which we didn't think in time to move to someplace closer to the theater), and Sunday was also Mother's Day. So some of us were trying to squeeze in this Star Trek stuff in addition to doing something with mom, which is hard to do that weekend if your particular mom isn't into Star Trek and doesn't want to do any of this other stuff on Mother's Day. And while we were recovering from the busy weekend of that week, the next weekend was our annual picnic, and some people had a lot to do to get ready for that.

I don't do most of the stuff that goes on at the picnic. I was never into outdoor sports, and I would think that even if I was that I would be getting a bit to old for this sort of thing. Still, unless I really need to be doing something else, I at least make an appearance at the thing and bring something and eat a hotdog or two.

So that is what we were supposed to be doing Saturday. Only we saw on the news that it was probably going to rain. And we have been talking about what we would do if it did rain. And we talked about having the picnic or not having the picnic on and off throughout the week, but especially on Friday we discussed it a lot, and we must have had twenty emails on the subject. And we decided that we needed to make a final decision on it by about nine in the morning on Saturday.

So just after nine it was announced (by email) that the picnic was canceled, and then there were about eleven more emails discussing either meeting at someone's house or just meeting for lunch at the regular meeting place, and then either trying to reschedule the picnic for the next day or maybe even the same time next month.

So we were supposed to check the email again after eleven to see if we were going to the regular meeting place (because we didn't know if we could get the place since we didn't have a reservation), and that all worked out, so by about eleven thirty or so anybody who cared enough to check their email knew that the picnic was canceled and we would be at the regular meeting place at two.

So at two o'clock, a lot of us were at the regular meeting place, mostly talking about the new movie, cause we hadn't planned anything for the day because we had expected to be at the picnic. There were a few people who weren't there, but there are always a few people who aren't there anyway.

So that night we all got an email from someone who saw that it was raining and decided not to go to the picnic because it was raining and he wasn't sure if anyone else would be there.

And it's not like he didn't have computer access, or he couldn't have sent us the email.

There were at least thirty emails on the subject that he just decided not to read, so then he couldn't figure out if anyone was going to be at the picnic.

It was this guy that I complained about in October for sending the large emails. So I don't get why you send emails and expect everyone to read your emails when you don't stop to read anyone else's emails. I understand when people who do not have computers are out of the loop sometimes, but this guy either has a computer himself or borrows someone else's on a regular basis, and he skips over the part that says "you have 31 unread messages" so he can send us a message on the very same subject.

I know that to varying degrees we are all a bit weird in our little group, but there are a few that even I just do not get.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

More about the Star Trek movie weekend: Part II

Thursday morning I didn't do much, cause I didn't want to get too tired. Some of us were going to meet at the theater at about four, which meant I would be leaving the house around three. I decided that the gold trim I had added to the green robe needed going over again, but that was all I had time for. Someday I will probably make that other white piece to go over it, but it will have to wait.

Then I remembered that I had a gold dress, so I got that out of storage to see how it would look worn under the green robe. It wasn't quite as I remembered. I thought it had a high neck, but I guess that I was thinking of the silver dress. I buy a lot of stuff to use for costumes, and then I forget what I have. So I tried on the gold dress with the green robe, and decided that I should keep on the black t-shirt under the gold dress because the neck was too low, but other than that it should work.

So at three I put my gold dress and my green robe in the car, along with a Deep Space Nine science uniform shirt that someone had loaned me, and I headed out to the the theater. I stopped somewhere to grab a taco, cause I thought that I wouldn't get another chance to eat til after ten. Getting the taco took a bit longer than I thought, so I was a few minutes behind schedule, but no big deal.

None of the others were at the theater when I got there, but I noticed that our main props were already put up. So some of us had already been there, but apparently they had already left.

The assistant manager told me they would be back about 5:30.

That sucks. The reason for meeting at four was so that some of us could get into alien makeup and such. Someone was going to put Vulcan ears on me, or at least, that had been the plan. So now I had no Vulcan ears, and an hour and a half to kill.

I got a soda and went in to various theaters to watch previews. I could have gone to dinner, but I was hungry after rushing to eat that taco.

A few other people started to show up a bit after five, and weren't happy to find that I was the only one there. And then the first group that had been there came back, saying that they had left to try to fix problems with the props. So the problems were all fixed, and at about six most of us were all there ready to go.

And there wasn't time for anyone to put the Vulcan ears on me. Glad that I hadn't shaved my eyebrows yet. I tried on the gold dress and green robe, just so that my friend could see what it looked like, but then I took it off because it would be silly to wear that without the Vulcan makeup. I already had on the black pants and t-shirt, so I just put on the science uniform top. Not the greatest costume, but it works, and I was glad that someone had thought to loan it to me.

News people came and took pictures and video, as they did the night before, but I don't think that I am in the final cut of anything. Thursday night I did not have the best costume, and Wednesday night the guy kept trying to get pictures of me while I was wearing my glasses, and I kept trying to wave him off or get him to start over, which I guess that he didn't want to do. But friends of mine are on tape saying this and that, and we all had a good time bugging the customers with trivia and such. We ended up with four Klingons, two Vulcans, a Romulan, and lots of people in Federation uniforms. We even had some of the new uniforms.

The manager was very impressed with us, and he wants us to come back later and help promote Harry Potter.

We stayed til about ten or eleven, and then it took some time to get the smaller props and such packed away. I wasn't very helpful with that, since none of the props are actually mine and I didn't want to move anything without being instructed to. But I stayed that first night until everything was put away, so I didn't get home til after midnight.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

My little bit to add to the confusion about Freebie Wednesdays at Arbys

Okay, so we were at Arby's using some coupons we got in the mail, and on the tray there was this ad with a calender that said there will be free stuff at Arby's on Wednesdays throughout the summer.

Great. Tomorrow is Wednesday. We will come back.

Okay, so the flier says that a coupon is required. Where are these coupons? Is the flier itself the coupon? Cause it doesn't really look much like a coupon.

So I went home and Googled and found a story about Arby's giving away free stuff on Wednesdays. There's a particular free thing one Wednesday, and then a different free thing the next Wednesday, and then something else the Wednesday after that. Basically, on the days that you get a free sandwich you have to buy a drink, and on the days that you get a free drink you have to buy sandwich. So on the 13th of May you get a free Roastburger if you buy a drink, and then on the 20th of May you get a free chocolate swirl malt if you buy a sandwich.


There was a link to a place to sign up for emails with free coupons and such. We signed up and waited for our coupons.

The coupons that appeared were for free flavored teas if you buy a sandwich. That's nice, but not what we were looking for.

It is now Wednesday. I did more Googling.

There was great confusion in the Force.

Some people said that the flier was the coupon. Other people said that they got coupons in their email. Other people said that no coupon was necessary.

It says right on the flier that a coupon is required. Maybe I got a misprinted flier.

We took two fliers to the restaurant and hoped for the best. We got there very early, and the manager was outside drawing stuff on the sidewalk with colored chalk.

Okay, at our local restaurant, no coupon is required. We bought two sodas and got two free Roastburgers.

Good. I can stop digging the fliers out of the trash.

I hope that helps someone. But it probably just adds to the confusion.

More about the Star Trek movie weekend

This will probably go on for a while. And then when I finally get tired of posting about the events of the weekend, I'll go back to writing about Kellogg's stuff and toys from Burger King. And then maybe by that time I'll have the novelization and I can post something about that.

Probably, I should go back to the beginning.

It was Wednesday afternoon, and I had put a collar on my brown dress and attempted to add some fabric to the skirt to cover a slit that went to about my knee. The skirt didn't look good with the added fabric, so I removed it. I will just have to work on that later, and until then I'll wear boots to make the dress more modest. I gave up trying to decide what to do with the rest of the fabric and just sort of draped it over my shoulder.

I had added a hood to the green robe, along with some gold trim and some additional green fabric. I was trying to make it look a bit less like a bathrobe. I had wanted to have this white piece to go over it, sort of like the Vulcans wear in the first and third movies, but I decided that I didn't have time for it. Maybe later.

I went and bought some things for my hair, and some mounting tape. I had these really stiff elf ears which I trimmed down and attached to my own ears with the mounting tape. Then I put this mostly elastic hair thing on, and that covered part of the ears so that the cut part didn't show. This is how I used to wear the alien ears that I had twenty years ago that looked really good, but I didn't remember the tape being so uncomfortable. And the elastic thing was too tight, so my head hurt. And the brown dress was a bit warm, so I was uncomfortable in general. But the place I was going was like two miles from my house, and I was only planning to stay for a hour or so. I figured that we would talk to people til about six, and then they would go in to watch the movie, and there wouldn't be much to do after that and I would go home.

I wanted a friend to see me in the brown dress so she could tell me if it was good enough to wear on Thursday. At six she still wasn't there, so I decided to wait ten more minutes. And then she still wasn't there, and I decided to wait a bit longer, and then she still wasn't there, etc....

So while I was waiting for my friend, the head of our group got a call from the other theater manager saying that our sneak preview was back on. Earlier that day, he had told us that he couldn't get one of the film reels opened. But now that the problem was fixed, we were invited for a 9:30 show, if we could still make it.

So I went home and posted the information and sent out emails. And then I took off those ears and the brown dress and put on jeans and a T-shirt. And no one replied to my email, which surprised me a little, cause I at least thought people would ask if I was sure and want to confirm the location of the theater or something. But no one said anything about it, and I ate dinner. And then I checked the email again, and still no one replied. So I replied to it myself, thinking that would at least get the title of the email to pop up again so maybe if they missed it the first time someone would see it. And still no one replied, so after a few minutes I left. The theater was an hour drive away from my house, and I hadn't been there in a long time and wanted to make sure I could find the place, so I left half an hour early.

Right after I left, someone replied to the email saying that they hadn't gotten the message that there was to be a sneak preview.

Was I not clear? That was the message. But, I guess for them it would have been too late anyway. I think people had time to get there, but they didn't have time to eat first or hire a babysitter or finish whatever else they were doing. Still, everyone who wasn't there complained that they weren't told, why weren't they called, etc....

So I had no problems finding the place, and I was there half an hour early, by myself, with nothing to do. I left to go buy some ice cream. I came back. I was still by myself.

So at about 9:25 I was starting to worry that I would be the only one there and that the manager would not show the movie just for me by myself. But then two people came in and said they got my message and were a little surprised that no one else was there. And then people started coming in from the other theater, in costume, which we were not supposed to do. But it was a Wednesday night, so it wasn't like a lot of people saw us to wonder what was going on.

So there were less than twenty of our group there, and I was surprised that most of them were in costume cause they had been at the other theater, and most of them had bought tickets at the other theater to watch the second and third and forth movies, but they left the theater after watching Wrath of Khan so that they could watch the new movie. I don't think that I would have left the other theater if I had paid ten or fifteen dollars to watch the other films. But they did, so we had three Klingons and five people in various Federation uniforms.

So whatever complaining I might do later about things not being quite right and not matching up with what happens in the original series or the animated series or any of the other series, I just want to say that it is a good movie and that for the most part I liked it. So everyone should go see it, unless you are one of those people who just cannot stand remakes.

Okay, so that is enough for this post, and I'll write some more later.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

I do not have my ears on

Yesterday was the first day in several that I spent as a regular human. Friday, Saturday, and most of Sunday I had on a costume and Vulcan ears. I was supposed to be a Vulcan on Thursday as well, but there was a scheduling mix up and I ended up being dressed as a human Starfleet science officer instead. Even on Wednesday I spent almost two hours as a Vulcan.

But I am done with that for a bit. It was fun, but it is good to be able to relax now.

This was my first experience with using spirit gum. It really wasn't a big deal. I wonder why I resisted it for so long?

Maybe I had spirit gum confused with surgical glue?

Anyway, having spirit gum hold proper Vulcan ears on was considerably more comfortable than other things I have done in the past (though possibly some of the other things looked just as good or better). So it is good that I have them now and have had some practice getting them on by myself, and I can do it again if something like this happens again.

I was disappointed with the way I looked.

Not that the ears themselves looked bad or that the costume looked bad, just I looked bad. Sunday, after it was all over, my husband took some pictures of me in the ears and costume. And I just had no idea I looked that bad. I just don't look that good anymore, and I especially don't look good when I'm not smiling, and for the most part Vulcans do not smile.

I looked horrible.

You might think that I would have noticed this when I was looking in the mirror to put the ears on. Well, we don't quite see what we look like in the mirror, we see a mirror image that we get used to looking at. To see exactly what everyone else sees, we either need a second mirror or a photograph. And somehow seeing myself other than in the mirror always bothers me a bit, but Sunday seemed especially bad.

Anyway, no one seemed bothered by my appearance except me. But I will have to seriously rethink being a Vulcan or wearing any other costumes that require me to stop smiling.

Thursday, May 07, 2009

My sneak preview of the new Star Trek movie

First we were getting to see it, and then we weren't getting to see it. And then when most people had made other plans for the evening we were getting to see it again. And then we were about a half hour behind schedule, so some of the people who said that they couldn't make it at 9:30 probably would have gone if they had known it wouldn't actually start until almost ten.

I was the second person to hear that it was back on again. And I was the closest person to a computer, so I was the one who sent out the email. I was surprised when almost an hour later no one had replied. I expected some reaction. I expected someone to at least ask if I was sure and to confirm which theater we were supposed to meet at. So I replied to my own email, just so that the title of the first email would show up for a second time, but that didn't seem to help much. So I didn't want to be late for the show myself, and I left. Hardly anyone got the message in time, except for those people who got the message in person right after I did.

We weren't supposed to bring a lot of friends, but we were allowed to bring a few. I tried to invite a couple of people in my family who were interested, but again they didn't get the message in time to get to the theater at 9:30. So there were less than twenty of us there.

The odd thing was that one guy had already seen the movie somewhere else, and one lady was watching it for the fifth time.

The fact that someone would want to watch the same movie for the fifth time should tell you something.

The sneak preview was supposed to be sort of a secret, but most of our people had just come from another Star Trek event where they were watching the second and third and fourth movies in costume. I had time to go home and change, but most of them didn't. So we had with us three Klingons and five people in various Starfleet uniforms.

I don't want to give any of it away to those who haven't seen the movie yet, but I wanted to say something to the people are wondering whether or not to bother with it since it doesn't have the original actors (except for brief appearances by Leonard Nimoy). Remember The Next Generation episode "Rascals" where Picard and three of the crew become children in a transporter accident. So that was an episode where other actors were playing the characters, and it still works. And it's funny when you watch the actors do or say something just like the character should say, and it's even funnier when they say or do something that is just the opposite of what the character should say.

I don't feel great at the moment. I tried wearing the brown dress last night, and it was a lot warmer than I expected. And I wore the not so great Vulcan ears and an even less comfortable hair ornament. I wanted out of it almost as soon as I put it on, but I decided to go and make an appearance. I thought that I would stay for about an hour, but the main person that I wanted to see me in the costume was running a bit late. So I thought that maybe I could stay for two hours. In the middle of the second hour we learned about the sneak preview, so I waited another ten minutes or so and then went home and peeled everything off, except that I did not wash off the excessive eye makeup.

I wondered if everyone would stare at that. But since I spent most of the rest of the evening with three Klingons, I guess no one really noticed.

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Today is the big day...sort of

Okay, so today is the beginning of the Star Trek movie premier weekend, which will start at about five or six or so tonight when some of us start putting up tables at a local theater which is showing the second and third and fourth of the Star Trek movies. The plan is to put on our costumes to advertise our club and help collect for the canned food drive and all of that before some of us (not me) spend ten or fifteen dollars on tickets to actually watch these three movies.

The rest of us were supposed to head to another theater to watch the new movie. In theory, new movies are tested on the Wednesday or Thursday before opening day, just to make sure that the print is okay and that it has all the previews with it that it is supposed to have and all of that. So we were supposed to go and do that, so that we would get to see the movie ourselves before we do all the other stuff that we have planned to do the rest of the weekend.

And I noticed yesterday that I hadn't been told what time to meet everyone at the other theater.

Okay, so I didn't expect that the time would just be listed out for everyone to see, because only certain people are invited to the thing. If you aren't helping out this weekend, you don't get to see the movie before everyone else. And if you don't have an appropriate costume, then standing around the theater in your regular clothes doesn't count as helping out, and maybe you just aren't supposed to know when the early showing is.

So I wasn't really worried that I hadn't seen the time posted, but I did wonder that no one had sent me a private email about it. And then I thought that we had been emailing about so much other stuff that they probably thought that they had told me already and just forgot to send me a separate email. So I sent them some questions, which didn't get answered right away.

So it turns out that the movie might not get to the theater until Thursday morning, which kind of ruins our plans.

I could watch the movie Thursday morning, but I don't think that anyone else can. And I'll need to get ready to do this other stuff by maybe four or five, so I doubt that they will make an effort to get us in Thursday.

So that sort of sucks.

So today of all days, when I really need my sleep, I wake up at four in the morning and can't get back to sleep. I'm still hoping that we get to see the movie tonight, which means that I'll be up til at least one in the morning, and then I'll have a busy weekend after that.

Friday I've been invited to lunch at a very nice restaurant, but I will have to decline. By noon I am already supposed to be at the theater, and before that I will need time to get into costume and such. I volunteered for the early shifts on Friday, because I don't have a job. See?

So I'm sitting here when I should be asleep, and after checking my email there's a message that they still don't know if we will get to see the movie tonight.

Yesterday I decided to make one last shopping trip before working on one of the costumes. And my first trip was to Walmarts, where I did not quite get what I needed, but still managed to spend thirty dollars on this and that. Now, some of that was just stuff that we needed anyway, like soap. But most of it was stuff that I wouldn't have bought except for the movie being this weekend. And not having found some of the stuff I needed at Walmarts I started to go to Jo Ann's, and then I thought, I've already spent thirty dollars at Walmarts, so what am I thinking going to more stores?

So I ended the shopping trip and went to lunch instead. After lunch I went and bought eight more boxes of cereal that was on sale. I now have all the badges except the Klingon, and I think that I will just have to do without that one. I also have twelve more packages of cookies (mostly Grasshoppers) and the tokens that came with those. So I'm now just waiting to hear from Kellogg's if I can use those to get a T-shirt or if those are only good for flash drives. As soon as I get an answer I'll send off for something.

With DVDs of Star Trek movies playing in the background, I went to work on one of the costumes. It started with a brown dress that I thought needed to be altered somewhat. First, it has a slit to about the knee on one side. And second, I thought that it was cut a bit low in front for a proper Vulcan lady to wear it. So the first thing that I did was buy a yard of fabric that I planned to use to correct those two things.

Only then I thought that the fabric might look better draped over my arm. I found two other pieces of clothing that I thought could be cut to alter the dress. One piece would fix the neckline, and the other piece I would cut fabric from to close up the slit. I finally got the neckline all fixed, but then I noticed that the piece I meant to use on the skirt looked really good sort of draped around my hair. I got a haircut recently, and while I don't hate it as much as I did, my old hair looked better for a Vulcan.

So now I have nothing left to fix the skirt with. But I guess it doesn't show that much skin, and I'll probably wear boots with it anyway. But now I really should go out and find some more stuff to fix my hair with, even though I had said that I wasn't going shopping today, cause I should stay home and rest.

I probably won't work on the green robe now. It will just have to wait for some other occasion. It will probably double for some Harry Potter type thing. But I probably won't wear it myself for Harry Potter, cause I am planning to make a really nice hat, and they just wouldn't go together.

So I guess I'm going to go watch Hulu, cause I can't get back to sleep.

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

More wardrobe and other malfunctions

Okay, so this is the week that all the stuff is happening, and I'm still working on costumes. I shouldn't worry too much, since someone will loan me a science department shirt if the new stuff doesn't work out. Still, it is annoying.

I am working on two Vulcan costumes, one is a brown dress and one is a green robe. I had originally thought that I would wear the robe open and have the brown dress underneath, but I have since decided that the green robe is going to be too warm to do that, so it will probably be worn closed over a T-shirt and shorts or something like that. And since I'm going to wear it closed, I thought that I would have this white piece over it, like they have in the first and third movies, so I went out and bought some more fabric. This particular fabric is thick and stiff, somewhat like denim. And since I had planned to paint it and such I thought that I should wash it first.

Big mistake. I've spent a long time trying to get the stuff ironed, but it still doesn't look as smooth as when I brought it home from the store. And at some point I got a bit of makeup on it, so I'm not too happy about that either. I'm debating if I should go and get some more of it or just deal with it the way it is. Whatever I am going to do I need to go and buy the last of the supplies today and be done with it. I will briefly need something to wear tomorrow, and the day after tomorrow is the big day. There just isn't time to shop for more stuff.

The brown dress is okay, though there is nothing about it that really screams Vulcan. (I could put some symbols on it, but I really don't want to do that since except for the Idic I don't know what any of the symbols mean.) The original neckline was a bit low for what I thought a proper Vulcan lady should wear, so I was fixing that and almost got it perfect but I just cut something just a little too much and there is this tiny little hole showing in between the original neck and the new collar, and now I'm debating should I go back and get more fabric and try again or buy a brown T-shirt to wear under what I've already done, or maybe I should just pin it somehow and hope that no one notices.

As you can see I get frustrated with one, almost give up on it, then work on the other for a while until something goes wrong there, and then I go back to the other one and see if it is worth fixing. So I am not quite finished with either one of them.

Someone is holding a blue shirt for me. I should give up this nonsense and find my girdle and a black pair of pants that don't make me look fat.

Other people in the group are giving me a headache. Miss Allergies has decided not to participate at all, in spite of the fact that she was recently given a nice uniform with all of the pins, so that all she would have to do is find nice black pants and shoes, or else a short black skirt and black boots. If she wasn't going to wear the thing, the thing could have been given to me.

Also, despite having repeatedly asked for a certain level of costume, a few people just don't seem to get it. Some people don't have any costumes or uniforms, or they bought a uniform many years ago and it doesn't fit anymore. But they want to do something this weekend anyway.

Well, that's not the way it works. People want to see you in costume. People do not want to see you standing around in T-shirt and jeans saying that you used to have a costume.

This one person in particular just doesn't seem to grasp the concept of a uniform. Some shirt you buy at a regular store that resembles a uniform is not a uniform. Some other shirt that you have that looks like a uniform except that it is green instead of blue is not a uniform.

I'm not talking about the different colors in fabric. That one is bad enough, but it happens. The homemade uniforms and the store bought uniforms aren't ever quite the same color. And then if you really have money to blow and you send off for the exact fabric used by the studio and have a red uniform made exactly the same as those worn by the actors...

...well, you end up with a purple uniform and don't match anybody. Some stuff just looks different on film than it does in real life.

Still, those people had really good intentions, and they are to be thanks for their efforts, even if I am really envious of their disposable income.

No, that's not what I'm ticked about. I'm ticked about this guy that keeps coming up with stuff that looks like something he saw on one of the movies, but to most of us it just isn't a recognizable uniform. I think that the thing he's talking about is from Star Trek 5 and doesn't even have the Starfleet logo on it.

Jokes about Star Trek 5 aside....

Even if he bought this thing right from the studio (which I know he did not, he just bought something that looks like it) most people wouldn't recognize it from Star Trek.

I mean, if you have to tell someone that it looks just like a movie costume instead of people recognizing it as a movie costume, it just doesn't work.

Okay, so we have people with perfect costumes who can't be bothered, people with no costumes who won't take a hint, and most of the rest of us have put on a few pounds and would never be mistaken for real Starfleet officers even with our uniforms.

I know that I have stuff to do and shouldn't be wasting my time with this little rant. Except that it is too early in the morning for me to seriously attempt anything else.

On the bright side, there are now 97 of the new Outer Limits that I can watch on Hulu next week when things get back to normal. And later, I'm going to go to Burger King for lunch and see if they have toys yet.

Saturday, May 02, 2009

We don't need no stinking badges

But sometimes, we like them anyway.

I've been eating a lot of Kellogg's cereal this week. After receiving some information from my friend of the great white north, I decided that I had to have this little plastic freebie toy that resembles a Starfleet Command badge. After looking online I found out there was other free Star Trek stuff from Kellogg's.

Okay, so now about a week later, I am the proud owner of four command badges, two engineering badges, eight assorted tokens, a box of Cheez-its, a box of Eggo Waffles, three packages of Keebler Fudge Shoppe Grasshoppers, and nine boxes of sugary kid cereal.

Okay, the Grasshoppers are going to go pretty quickly, but nine boxes of kid cereal is probably more than I have eaten of the stuff in the last three years. But the box says it will keep until March of 2010, so I can probably eat it before then.

And the good news is that if we all really get into a panic about the Swine Flu and stay in our homes, I won't starve to death. Even if the power goes out for a while, I'll be okay, cause I've got all this cereal that doesn't even need to be cooked. And I don't even think that sugary kid cereal needs milk. You can just munch on it straight from the box. So I'm all set.

Now I just have to decide how much more of this stuff do I really need to buy?

I addition to some of the cereal having free badges, others have mail-in offers for T-shirts and flash drives and plates. You have to either send money or collect tokens to get those. I just need to find out if they are interchangeable. I probably don't really need a flash drive or a plate, but I think I'd really like a T-shirt. If all of the tokens count the same, I only need one more. If not, I have one towards a plate and about a third of the way towards a T-shirt and about the same on the flash drive.

Maybe I'll post more about this later.

Okay, enough about cereal.

Next week is the premiere of the new Star Trek movie. And while we have long been told that the opening day is May 8th, some of us will be going to see it on the 7th. And a few of us will either be seeing it on the 6th, or else we will be going to some other Star Trek related event in costume. After going back and forth on whether or not I should bother with making a new costume, I have decided that I should go ahead and do that. So that means I will be rather busy for a bit.

So you might not hear much from me until about a week from Tuesday.

I have costumes to work on, which need to be done before Wednesday night. And then I will be at theater on Thursday and Friday, and if I'm not totally worn out by then I will also be at the theater on Saturday and Sunday. And then of course there will be the normal stuff going on here Monday, so that's a lot of stuff going on until Tuesday.

Okay, so don't get offended if I don't want to chat and I don't post much and I don't much answer your long emails. Not that you can't still send me long emails, just that it will be a while before I'll get around to answering them.

So that's about it for now.

Live long, and be happy.