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Archive for the month “July, 2012”

Polite Poetry seven

texture-designer-grey-fur

Grey Headed Soul

Grey hairs fill my soul

what was first simply weeds in a garden

is now an Amazon, blocking out the sum

The temples of my heart

Varicous veins older streaming as if they were the Nile Delta,

Telling tales of Ages long past hidden ‘twixt decpreit ribs.

Where did the time go-

Can time be lost

Or maybe father time simply grows old

outdated

with grey locks covering his ears and heart

And I-

I foolishly march on

with clippers in hand and dye in the other

Scrambling after the footprints of Gilgamesh

denying myself of the rite of passge of time

For a grey headed soul is not a signal for a last meal of sorrow and regret

but a message from the gods that It has only just begun.

Avatar the Last Airbender: when East meets West

I wrote this a long time ago, so be gentle.

Ionic versus Pentatonic.   Nuclear family versus extended. Chopstick versus fork. For as long as the cradles of civilization have been around, there has been a difference between Eastern Culture and Western culture that has gone beyond the physical separation by the Ural and Caucasus Mountains.  Whether it be by the main differences in philosophy and religion or the way to hand a business card, it obvious that there is a major divide between how things functions between the cultures. However, every so often lightning strikes and that great red line dissipate to create something truly awe-inspiring.   In the year 2004 at Comic-con, the world saw lightning struck once again. Avatar: The Last Air bender was ready to shine.

Like many great animated television shows, ATLA(Avatar The Last Air bender) began in Burbank California. The two men who came up with the main idea were Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko in 2001. It took them only two weeks to come up with the idea and pitch it. By February of 2005 it was an overnight hit. Since that fateful day there has been three seasons, a few hour long specials, and a successful second season to grace the avatar universe. The Avatar universe tells the story of Avatars, one person every lifetime who has the ability to use all four of the elements in comparison to only one, to bring harmony to the land. ATLA tells the story of how Aang, an avatar trapped in a block of ice for 100 years, and his companions defeat the fire nation after it had waged an all-out war for domination. Avatar: The Legend of Korra, is about the Avatar after Aang named Korra who must live in a world where although people with elemental abilities live in harmony,  a resistance of normal people is formed to stop bending.

So why is Avatar special? Well, that is multi-part answer. One would be the fact that Avatar is a serious drama.  Even though there is humor involved, most notably involving the character Sokka and his trusty boomerang, it would be a lie to say that ALTA does not tug on the metaphorical heartstrings. The creators masterfully play with music, storyline, and character developments that make mature characters that are relatable despite the odd universe in which they live in. I found myself emphasizing with Anng’s attempt to get Katara to notice him and crying with him when the frustration of being born into responsibility became too much to handle.  What we were given was a show not just for the demographic of 8-11. We were given an epic story that blended western and eastern ideas to give a masterpiece. It is understood early on that eastern philosophy, art, and martial arts heavily influenced the show. The amazing thing was, it was not based off of tired old stereotypes that would often show up in western shows including Eastern elements.  ATLA was a celebration of Eastern culture.

Recently, Avatar: The Legend of Korra was renewed for a second season. A greater diffusion between western and eastern history/ideas is created, with jazz and automobiles painted next to Chinese folk music and bamboo trees.   The future for this show is unknown to everybody except the small group of dedicated artists in Burbank. What is known is that Avatar will continue to meld the hearts of mind of Eastern and Western fans for years to come.

God I love the track Team.  (M. Knight Free since  ’05)

-Grant

Woh…this thing is causing a divide. I kind of agree with him though.

GeekOut

Editor’s note: When he’s not teaching the Internet how to fist-fight, why being weird is awesome or how to self-publish your own books, Joe Peacock tours the world, showing his extensive “Akira” art collection. He also cosplays as a six-foot-two-inch, 310lb Powerpuff Girl to fill the hollow pit that is his need for the wrong kinds of attention.

There is a growing chorus of frustration in the geek community with — and there’s no other way to put this — pretty girls pretending to be geeks for attention.

San Diego Comic-Con is the largest vehicle, but it’s hardly the only convention populated with “hot chicks” wearing skimpy outfits simply to get a bunch of gawking geeks’ heads to turn, just to satisfy their hollow egos.

Now, before every single woman reading this explodes, let me disambiguate a bit. I absolutely do not believe that every girl who attends…

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Why Kids are Geeks (and why we should all strive to be kids)

Whether you adore little kids and their positive outlooks on life or you loathe their constant caffeine-like high and grubby, fidgeting hands, let’s face it:

Kids are geeks.

In fact, kids are, and always will be, the only pristine form of Geek that will ever walk the Earth. With their innate sense of being themselves, children have yet to be corrupted and trained to hide who they are, what they love, and what they believe in to fit the mold society (parents, peers, and the media) presses against us.  A child will stare at a handicapped person, not with pity or horror, but with innocent curiosity on why that human looks like a robot with their prosthetic leg or why they are in a wheelchair with a tube in their nose.  It’s this innocent curiosity that we lose as we get older when we’re taught not to stare at, point to, or question anything that isn’t deemed ‘normal’.  It’s this innocent curiosity that allows humans to grow and learn about themselves and others around them.  It’s this innocent curiosity that we need to soul search for as we get older, with more layers of security added as each birthday passes.

I love kids.  I work with them all throughout the summer, volunteering for the children’s programs at my local library and as a CIT for a day camp.  It’s with these kids that I feel most comfortable, because I know they aren’t going to judge me.  They don’t care what race or religion I am as long as I push them on the swings.  They don’t care what my sexuality or gender is as long as I help them find the book they’re looking for.  If I am kind and friendly to them, they like me.  That’s all that matters.  And that should be all that matters as we get older, but how quickly we are blinded when we are placed in the orderly line set to keep everyone organized and the same.

Humans need to learn from their smaller form, and strive to be like them in the sense of unconditional love (not unlike that of a dog’s), acceptance, and zest for life.  Sure, we want to grow up from the days of temper tantrums, but we don’t want to lose sight of the most important values to have.  If every single person showed just who they are and accepted others in the way a kid does, we’d have a lot less hate, bigotry, and anger in the world.

A true geek isn’t just an expert on their topic of choice, whether it be movies, books, comics, or other nerdy things.   A true geek isn’t just someone who reads under the covers at night to avoid an early bedtime or tries to defeat the next Pokemon gym leader before the school bus comes in the morning.

A true geek is in touch with their inner child.

~Rizzo

(Oh, I probably should introduce myself.  I’m Rizzo, and Colin is my Musically-Inclined-Older-Brother-I-Never-Had.  I do have a real older brother, but we’ll talk about him another time.)

Polite Poetry six

              

                            Ellie

The tiny pattering of feet fill her head

growing in intensity as the dream shrivels away

She lays outside letting the raindrops batter her porcelain frame

What happened to the balloon that would never allow her string to be tied down

the helium of life is gone and her string

oh that string that was tethered around my arm and lifted me up

it is wrapped around the leg of that chair.

the exhilarating cries anticipated has all but been replaced

replaced with the sobbing. the rain.

Tell me, what can this hopeless balloon vendor do

do without your laugh that was more precious than any amount of helium gas.

Tell me

How can I help you float above the falls?

I do not own any of the characters from Pixar’s Up. All rights go to Pixar, my heroes.  -Grant

The Dark Knight Rising into theatres

All right Ladies and oh so gentle men, the day that we(Though I can only speak for myself) have been waiting for  is almost upon us. That is correct,  The Dark Knight Rises flies into theatres in just three days.  M Night, I mean The Dark Knight Rises, is the third movie in Christopher Nolan’s action packed trilogy that follows the creation and possibly destruction of Batman. This last movie is going to be a special treat for fans of the  comic book. Nolan is using the pivotal storyline of when Bane breaks the bat. Every so often in a comic book, a storyline comes along that brings all the right people and ideas together to create a special moment in a comic. This moment is like a bottle of Dasani on a deserted island or that Pokeflute that moves away the tired old storylines and hashed out idea. Batman vs. Bane is that kind of storyline and Nolan is sticking pretty close to it, unlike that dumbed down Bane in the infamous Batman and Robin. This movies seems as if it will live up to the hype.

There is much mystery surrounding the movie, and nobody knows exactly what Nolan has in store for the end. All that is known is that the franchise is going out with a bang. I am so excited, I am not even going to rant about Anne Hathaway( and trust me, if you could see the conversations me and my friends have about her as Catwomen, you would pay me to shut up).  Regardless of how good the movie is or is not, it can be safely said that  this trilogy that explored what Batman is, with all his flaws and idisyncrosies, shall be missed.

See you at the Theatre    Grant

 

I’m Batman!

So Cute

Comic Store Heroes: Real Life Super Heroes

Up Up and Away! Click for a link to Mid Town Comics

There is no doubting or denying it. Being a geek, or a nerd, or whatever sub category you delineate yourself with is becoming not only tolerated, but embraced.  Still, there will always be that percentage of the total population who can say that they eat, breath, and sleep the geek. I don’t think I can. Will Wheaten and Felicia Day defiantly can.  Still, it is rare to see a television not only for geeks, but celebrates the lifestyle. Last night, I saw a television show slipped nicely into that Mylar sleeve. On July thirteenth Comic Store Heroes, a show about a comic store called Midtown Comics, premiered on NatGeo.  In the special one hour opening, the show followed the owner, two of the main staffers, and two comic fans with unique stories as they all prepared for comic-con New York.  The main players in this amazing episode included: Gerry Gladstone who is an owner, Thor Parker the marketing and events manager, Alex Roe, who is in charge of buying and selling merchandise, Jill Pantozzi a huge name in geek blogging, and Chris R.Notarile who is an aspiring comic book creator.

A simple synopsis of the hour long premiere is that Midtown Comics is preparing for Comic-Con. During this time Thor has to try to find a big name to sign autographs at their table and Alex must buy 10,000 comics along with the task of finding a special comic book for Gerry, “Hot Stuff, The Little Devil No.1″. Along the way we meet Chris Notarile , a man on a mission to get his comic on the shelves of Midtown Comics. To do this, he must woo Thor at comic-con with super ideas.  Jill Pantozzi, a blogger with muscular dystrophy and 15,000+ views is featured.  The teapot comes to a whistle as Comic-Con approaches and the pressure builds up.  What happens? Watch the episode.

The first time I went to Midtown Comics was my freshman year of High school.  I was on a trip with the orchestra and we had extra free time to walk around NYC.  Something attracted me to that amazing shop, and every chance I can find myself in New York with extra time and extra money I head down there. As you watch the show, you can truly tell how special a comic book shop is. A community is formed, and as long as you have an interest in comics you are immediately accepted into the clan of collectors.  Comic Store Hero is special because it does not try to build upon an age old stereotype. It shows a candid community of people who share a common bond and the extremes that they will go for their passion.  Whether you have been reading comics since before you could talk or you have only seen The Amazing Spiderman in films, Comic Store Heroes is a show to watch.  Sometimes, a super hero doesn’t have to fly. They just have to believe and move forward.

-Grant

http://www.thenerdybird.com/

http://www.houndcomics.com/protector.php

Polite Poetry 5

The Best Meal

Silence is a dish best left in the heart

a non-perishable delicacy that is sweet to the lips and melodious to the ears

Like a finely made pot roast that induces warm memories of home and mom

it should be cooked slowly.

How quickly we are to chew our words without tasting the tenderness of the meat.

How quickly we are to spit out our food without understanding why it tastes so delicious

Oh!

We  discard that god given recipe as if it was rotten eggs

and not a meal that activates every tactile sensation in the body.

Taste

Smell

Understand

And Hush.

In time even the most harshest food critics must bow.

The Amazing Peter Parker

Bear with me, I have’nt written a review in a few months.        Peter Palmer?

Whenever a movie or a concept is redone for the movies, a collective gasp is held in the lungs. Most movies take ten years or more to redo a loved movie, for fear of backlash by the critics and potential audience. That is why it came as a great surprise to almost everyone when the franchise movie featuring Tobey Maguire was rebooted featuring Emma Stone and  Andrew Garfield, that guy from The Social Network.  It is common knowledge that the Spiderman trilogy had lost steam after the first movie, but that never warranted this. I have no qualms when it comes to my love of Spiderman. He has always been my favorite superhero. I even wrote one of my main college essays about Peter Parker. You can understand why a feeling that can only be described as joy, anxiety, and the whole entire Spanish soccer team kicking me in the unmentionables came to mind. One good comic book movie is a gift from the Gods. Two based off of the same character by different directors filmed only five years apart is…….impossible?

Or is it?

Last week I got up the nerves to get on my knee’s and ask my aunt to take my broke ass to the movie theatre. After shamelessly smuggling in food and scaring the annoying tweenagers into shutting up by secretly telling them about how the next ten years of their lives would play out, the movie began.

I was not disappointed.

Okay, so  from a film critic’s point of view, it was nothing new.  It had the feel of Indie with a Hollywood budget, which makes sense coming from Marc Webb( I know,  he was born to direct Spidey!), the director of (5oo) days of Summer and numerous music video’s for big time artists(Trust me, you’ve seen one of his video’s).   It was a very safe movie. As a critic I would give it  4 out of 5. B+, A-.

As a self-proclaimed Spiderman fanatic, let me just say YYEEEEEEEEEEEESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS to the nth degree yes!

I loved it. I really liked the Tobey Maguire series, I honestly did, but I lived this movie. Garfield may not look quite as geeky, but he embraced the loner aspect to the fullest.  With that, let me say this: watch out Mr. Andrew. Emily Jean Stone is mine. Everybody loves “You hit the jackpot, Tiger”,  but nobody remembers the first and great love who was tragically ripped from Peter. It was Gwen Stacy who ended the Silver Age of comic books with a snap of her neck. It was Gwen who shared  Peter’s love of all things science and taught our sensitive spider about love. It was Emma Stone who played her flawlessly. She was smart and charming and everything I thought Gwen should be.  Andrew Garfield did not disappoint either. Though he is a bit cooler than I imagine Peter, everything else was spot on. He was socially awkward( I have never seen a man stumble so much in the mouth than Peter talking to a girl), he had problems with bullies, and best of all he had a quick tongue.   Also, Webbs did not have an easy task. He had to take away staples of the Spiderman series to distance himself from being a sorry repeat of a good trilogy. That means no Mary Jane, no Norman, no “With Great Power comes Great Responsibility”(Though he did everything but kick the audience into that general direction).

I think what made the movies worth it, besides the fact that we saw the making of the wbshooters was provided the knowedge that spidey does not web to clouds, was that it was never about just spiderman. The movie was about Peter. For the last ten minuets, there was no man behind the mask. It was just a man. There is something you need to know about Spiderman that may shock and astound you.

His power origin story sucks spider balls.

Seriously.  The Fantastic Four went into space in a space ship made by the smartest man in the world, Bruce Banner saved a kid who walked into the high level test he was doing, and Thor is a god. A GOD!   Spiderman was a science nerd bit by the wrong spider.  How pathetic.

Want another secret.

I’m not a Spiderman fan.

But I am a Peter Parker fan.

Hell, I am a fantastic. Why? Because he is just like us, the readers.  Despite the amazing powers he was given, he is immediately called a menace and cannot get a real job.  Just when things start to go well, his girlfriend dies, and he might have killed her.  He can’t catch a break.  Peter Parker has always been about the rollercoaster ride of life. No other hero initially had that.  Spiderman did not punch the lights out of The Lizard. Peter Parker and science saved the day.

I cannot wait for the next movie to see what Webb will do with our two science nerds.   If God, A.K.A Stan Lee, will allow it,  believe that we shall seeing a lot more of the greatest hero ever. Peter Parker

-Grant

“With power that may be gre- alot, there should be responsi- certain moral tasks that take the form of sacrifice. Do you understand me Pete?”

Say What?

Polite Poetry 4

Tomorrow is Today

My eyes sing the poems of morrow while rejecting the lore of yesteryears

What need do I have for the bards of before when

the angels trumpet tommorrow loud and clear

If my aim be true-and true my aim is-

then I shall fire my silver arrow through the clouds of doubt and anxitey

Oh Hamlet!

If only thy knew the ecstacy of pure uninhibited passion

While you ponder eggshells and weigh the morality of chiken scratch upon a golden scale,

Real princes are marching towards their rightful destiny.

No! I shall not Hamlet about while soildors of good fortune lay a stake in my land

My mind is true(and truth lies in an active mind)

I shall not falter

I shall not quiver

I shall not bend to the unceasing tide that is warm and nostalgic to the mind

yet bitter and poisin to the heart

But yesterday-

What yesterday!?

Tomorrow is today is tomorrow is today

And those who do not keep forging a new path into tomorrow,

shal be left to suffocate in the feces known as regret

Tomorrow is today is tomorrow is today

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