Friday, November 28, 2008
They shut the road through the woods
Seventy years ago.
Weather and rain have undone it again,
And now you would never know
There was once a road through the woods
Before they planted the trees.
It is underneath the coppice and heath,
And the thin anemones.
Only the keeper sees
That, where the ring-dove broods,
And the badgers roll at ease,
There was once a road through the woods.
Yet, if you enter the woods
Of a summer evening late,
When the night-air cools on the trout-ringed pools
Where the otter whistles his mate
(They fear not men in the woods
Because they see so few),
You will hear the beat of a horses feet
And the swish of a skirt in the dew,
Steadily cantering through
The misty solitudes,
As though they perfectly knew
The old lost road through the woods...
But there is no road through the woods!
--Rudyard Kipling, from Rewards and Fairies.
Thursday, November 27, 2008
First of all I have to list a couple of exceptions. It could not include A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving, first of all because the Peanuts franchise is very stand alone, and second of all because I already have a new deluxe version of it. It should not include The Bugs Bunny Thanksgiving Diet or Daffy Duck's Thanks-for-giving Special, because both are just chop-jobs of good cartoons spoiled by poor linking animation. That said and done, the collection could feature:
B. C. : The First Thanksgiving (Levitow-Hanson Films)
Intergalactic Thanksgiving (Nelvana Limited)
The Mouse on the Mayflower (Rankin/Bass)
Thanksgiving in the Land of Oz (Muller-Rosen Productions)
The Thanksgiving That Almost Wasn't (Hanna-Barbera Productions)
It could then be filled up with a few shorts, like the Warner Brothers cartoons featuring Daffy Duck and Tom Turkey, or the MGM cartoon with Jimmy Durante-soundalike turkey, and the Popeye cartoon featuring the immortal line, "What! No toikey?" Thus I could have another little holiday selection of my memories safely enshrined and filed away for future reference. So get cracking, oh gods of DVD boxed sets making. You should be able to pick up most of these items for a song and a few beads and trinkets.
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
The Disney Schoolbus Lunchbox--the original version--for years now the Holy Grail of my garage sale, flea market, and e-Bay searches. Why? Because it was my first lunch box in first grade, and the one thing for school I was allowed to pick, and one of the coolest things I ever saw. The one I owned went to rust and was thrown away, its thermos broken and gone for years already when it was tossed (a parental executive decision), but I always kept my eyes open for a replacement. When we saw one as a display at Clear Springs Restaurant I almost plotzed, and planned most of the meal how to steal it. (Too many witnesses though--about 200.) Ones on e-Bay were always a little too expensive. But at Eckman's I ran across this one.
Monday, November 24, 2008
as green as spring was new.
The road was empty, swept and clean,
except for me and you.
The light was clear, the golden light,
and long the sunbeams lay
As you and I went walking
on that far November day.
We had our canes, our India canes,
that we bought as a pair;
We tramped the highway tapping them
with hardly any care.
We talked of things, of future things,
and things of futures past
And the day was decked in joy
and the day went by too fast.
The times we had, times long ago,
now long ago are gone
And memories fade as colors fade
and fading are undone;
But I shall find, and finding know,
and knowing shall remember
This poem I wrote, wrote of us two,
and a day in November.
I've spent most of this day doing prepatory chores for Thanksgiving (as per the old wives' program for Thanksgiving week: "Monday--wash; Tuesday--scour; Wednesday--bake; Thursday--devour."), mostly housecleaning and sprucing up, but also baking some of my traditional oatmeal cookies. I'm really too tired to do the original posting I wanted, so instead offer this old poem and a note. It's prophetic too--I really do remember that day vividly, thanks to these verses.
Friday, November 21, 2008
Tod McFarlane ran a line of action figures called Twisted Oz. This included characters like Dorothy, the Scarecrow, the Tin Man, the Cowardly Lion, Toto, and the Wizard of Oz. All of them were "twisted", that is, more adult and violence designed. I really didn't care to have any of these. But then there was a "Collector's Club Exclusive" the Flying Monkeys. And I had to have them.
There are two Flying Monkeys in the package, and a bizarre little Munchkin thrown in for good measure. One Flying Monkey looks like he was created cybernetically from a dead chimp grafted with feathered wings and mechanical leg; the other one looks like a demonic/gargoyle ape with leathery wings. Both are about three and a half inches tall, and are creepy cool.
I made a newbie mistake about them, though. I bought them right off the crack, and later as I was leaving I saw the entire set (out of the box) going for only slightly more than what I'd paid for just the monkeys. It's probably just as well, though. Some of those others are a wee bit unpleasant, and I'm not sure I want them around. Coming up in another post: the incredible artifact I bought for much less than I thought I would ever find it.
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
The winter winds will follow after
But there is love, and love is warm
The woods are greener over yonder
Monday, November 17, 2008
Friday, November 14, 2008
Thursday, November 13, 2008
"Will it cost me anything?"
"What? I just said it was free!" said Miss Tick.
"Yes, but my father said that free advice often turns out to be expensive," said Tiffany.
Miss Tick sniffed. "You could say this advice is priceless." she said. "Are you listening?"
"Yes," said Tiffany.
"Good. Now...if you trust in yourself..."
"...and believe in your dreams..."
"...and follow your star..." Miss Tick went on.
"...you'll still get beaten by people who spent their time working hard and learning things and weren't so lazy. Good-bye."
--from The Wee Free Men, by Terry Pratchett.
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
A quick run on the internet and I found out several things. Yaddle appeared in The Phantom Menace, and -surprise!- she's a female. Not established in the movie but in "secondary sources" is she is 477 years old, which is young for her kind. The character was designed as a young version of Yoda, but ultimately was utilized as a separate person. The name sounds to me like a conflation of Yoda and raddle, and she does indeed look like a raddled Yoda.
The grouchy Evan Piell and and the right leg of 5D6-RA7 (part of a build-a-robot offer) are simply bonuses.
Monday, November 10, 2008
What was being offered these days turned out to be what had been offered in those days. I couldn't identify any new product, and what was there was covered with dust. Apparently the store gets along on its comics and gaming. And to be honest, the action figure boom has almost died out; I blame the gyott-dang vidya games. Soon I fear it will all dwindle down to super-hero movie tie-ins and expensive action models.
Anyway, I am still going to buy action figures, the same way I buy real paper books. I was determined not to leave the store without at least one figure. I found Gran'ma Ben cast down on an end-cap amidst a jumble of oddments. I've always been interested in this figure, because while action figures of women are rare, and of old men even rarer, a figure of an old woman is extremely rare. I can only think of two others: Mulan's Grandmother and Granny Gross from Ghostbusters. I'd seen Gran'ma Ben all over the place: in Florida, at Bussey's Flea Market, at other comics shops. The thin film of dust on her plastic blister decided me; today she would go home with me. I was barely able to make out the faded price tag: $17.95.
Gran'ma Ben is a great figure. She's seven inches tall and comes with a coin on a necklace and "The Mystery Cow" costume. This rubbery shell is designed for another figure in the Bone line, Smiley Bone, and is connected with a story in the graphic novel Bone. Her defining characteristics are her big meaty arms, squinting eyes, and a chin that would make Mammy Yoakum jealous. All in all she looks like a friendly giantess in a fairy tale.
Getting this figure finally made me look into Bone is all about. We had been aware of it for years, and been vaguely annoyed by it's obvious indebtedness in style to Walt Kelly's Pogo; I think that that prejudice in me has been worn away. What I read about it interests me, and the fact that a complete edition of the entire run of the comic book exists make me more likely to get into it. I have once more identified a facet of my personality, that occurs to me and then is forgotten; I hate to take something a little bit at a time over a span of time. Some things have to be around in a large quantity to take in all at once so I can see how they develop.