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In the past, before the upgrades and the downtime, reporting things in the blogs was a complicated mess of PMing BlogAlert, linking the content, describing the broken rules, and hoping someone read the BlogAlert account in a timely manner.
The "REPORT" buttons on comments and entries DO WORK. Before the downtine, they did not. Now they do! Hurray!
So, in short, if you have something to report, click that button, describe the offense, and a blog staff member will receive the report and an automatic link the the offending content. (Please do not use this to report signatures)
This is much easier on us, on you, the general populace, and also on kittens everywhere.
-The Blog Staff
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I ordered some old Nuva/Krana polybags and Kanoka boxes a couple months ago, and they finally arrived this week!
Just for fun, here are some stats about the Kanohi Nuva polybags (though 20 is probably not a statistically representative sample, so this might be utterly meaningless). The masks were clearly not distributed evenly throughout the polybags; some were rarer than others. Focusing only on shape, the Miru was the most common, with 12 appearing out of 20 polybags (40 masks), followed by the Kaukau, with nine. In six instances, a Miru and a Kaukau were packaged together, making this by far the most common combination. The two most common masks were the brown Miru and white Miru, with four of each. Rarest shape was the Kakama, with just three out of 40. For colours, red and brown were the most common, with ten of each. Rarest colour was black - just two out of 40, and both were Kaukau. Curious that LEGO would stop producing brown sets in 2006 because of low sales, but they chose to make it one of the most common Kanohi colours in 2002/3. Annoyingly, there were five set masks, three of which were the white Akaku. The other two were a red Hau and a blue Kaukau. There were zero Protodermic/silver masks, not even any silver Miru, so the reason for the abundance of that mask, compared with the other five (which are now quite valuable), remains a mystery.
I was surprised that these came with regular Krana, not Krana-Kal, but now that I think about it it makes sense: these polybags are from late 2002, but the Krana-Kal weren't released until early 2003 (the later boxed versions of these packs came with the Krana-Kal). All the purple Krana in these polybags were the lighter variant.
There was less repetition in the Kanoka, but I didn't bother to take detailed notes. I got no more than two of any given disk out of eleven boxes containing two disks each, and there were only two instances of duplicates - 265 and 654 (there were 36 different disks in these packs; the 16 that came in sets and other promotions did not come in the packs).
More cool stuff on the way!
So let me start my story like any old man with an anecdote that doesn't really go anywhere.
I was trawling through my old blog entries trying to find out when I got Pokemon Diamond. I'm playing Brilliant Diamond and I wanted to see if I wrote down anything about my initial playthrough of the game. Turns out, 17 year old me did not see that as something worth recording.
Instead I seemed to be a little full of myself. A lot of the blog entries from that time are about my own fame and power on BZP, which in the hindsight of old age looks a bit sad and pathetic. Yeah, I definitely played it up a bit for laughs, but I have to confess that there was a bit of truth behind that.
It's hard when you're seventeen and you have all these hopes and aspirations. At school, you're just a regular person, but on the internet, hey, you just make some funny Flash videos and write some silly movie parodies and suddenly you're someone special. Of course it would go to your head, you're still a kid. What do you know about power or fame? How could you possibly use those things responsibly? I wasn't even that powerful or famous. Imagine if I were a real celebrity! Yowza...
For the most part, I guess I was well-liked. Certainly if I go onto Bionicle Discord communities, people tell me they have fond memories of some of the things I've done. So maybe I'm overthinking it, maybe this is just the imposter syndrome that we all have to face in adulthood.
And things could absolutely be worse. You hear all sorts of stories about people who use their power and influence to abuse and control vulnerable people. I definitely never did anything like that. I just made some blog posts that aged poorly.
I don't think I'm a bad person now or that I was a bad person before, I just think it's interesting how my values shifted as I got older. Right now I am 31. I run my own business where I give children speech therapy. “I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” That's my new aim in life: to help make other people feel good, not just myself. My power and influence speaks for itself, I don't have to brag about it on the internet, even as a joke.
Thank you for reading this. I hope you managed to grow beyond the person you were at seventeen too.
Pretty meh so far. Not exactly off to a great start, but I've grown used to such things. There are a few things I'm looking forward to in the next few weeks, such as seeing Scream, the final season of AoT, and going to North Carolina next weekend. Hopefully covid will cooperate and everything will work out.
I've also been listening to some Star Wars audiobooks while at work, and it's been a fun experience. :3
But yeah, that's basically it. My life is so boring I can barely squeeze a blog entry out of it lol.
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Evening, chaps. another Blog from me. so.... i have recently been playing Hollow Knight. it'll make you use your head for thinking on the spot to get out of tight situations, then it'll make you cry tears out of the eyes of that same head. so, i'm enjoying it!
In other news....
well recently i thought i'd try Stud io for the first time and made this little fella.
Well, i made like 10 of him. his name's Ben.
On January 16th, a new and uncertain journey begins:
There is nothing to fear.
Welcome to Aaru. In this world, there is no magic. Nothing lurks in the shadows; there are no gods to rule your destiny. No Masks of Power, no Relics or Artifacts. Just people, living ordinary lives in the valley. Ignore the sounds of shattered glass; there is nothing to fear. You are safe in the light, by the warmth of the hearth. Live your perfect life. Do not look for answers, for you already know what you need to know. Live these good days.
Do not seek out the Question.
There is nothing to fear.
Later this month, a final stand will be made.
All on Discord : https://discord.gg/4wYG8Xdg
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Well, despite all the bad stuff and pandemic going on throughout the world, I have to say I think 2021 was a good year. The best year I've had in a while. I looked back at the year in my journal and realized this has been a year where I made a lot of my goals happen! The wishes I had at the beginning of the year came true! I've posted about some of the bigger moments in my previous entries but here are some bullet points covering good things that happened to me this year:
- I've kept up my health and gotten some dental procedures, that while not exactly pleasant, were necessary.
- I graduated college and earned a Bachelor's degree in Civil Engineering.
- I got a new car that runs very well.
- I took that car on a long trip on my own.
- As part of that trip, I attended Brickfair Virginia and had an amazing time.
- I passed the FE (Fundamentals of Engineering) exam.
- I got into a master's program and finished my first semester with straight As, learning some cool new skills and doing research along the way.
- I started going to the gym regularly.
- I've been spending more time with my family, including some time where I'm responsible for my nephew.
- After years of applying, I've finally gotten a job, which I'll be starting at soon.
Here's hoping that 2022 can go as well for everyone as 2021 did for me!
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Hello! Painted this little Totoro in a cartoon style a long while ago (fall?), a style I never do so feels wrong, but wanted a laminated cover for password book. The printer didn’t do so well, but I’m too chicken to laminate the original. I think I used pen too? Can't remember.
That’s Porg, up there.
Some last-minute ornament friends for my dad’s coworkers. Wonderfully fun waiting room hand-amusement. 3hrs to make each.
And one for a neighbor + thanku cards from an older (July 2021?) 9x12 pencil. 4.5hrs for 8 cards.
Made a mush! Now I mustn’t wait for yard ones to sprout up. It simply never occurred to me before. Acrylic felt, stuffed with felt in the top, cotton scraps in the body, and I couldn’t find my dad’s steel BBs, so I used an old cabinet knob for a weight. A firm weeble-wobble body, perhaps? Embroidery floss French knot details, felt face, embroidery body details. Blanket stitch arms. Head and arms attached with embroidery floss “joint” loops, which allow the head and arms to rotate and pose. 6.5hrs for Mush assembly, not sure about the outfit.
(Real mush was reference/inspiration).
Low effort from basement lace. Elastic layer skirt and separate beaded top. Tie straps are from braided gold thread and embroidery floss. Belt from beads from a different grandma. Branch wand from more of those + wire. Flowers were premade, then looped into a crown.
Me grandmither gifted this wee ceramic cottage to me. I think she made it, her basement is still filled with molds, unfinished figures, porcelain doll handmade heads, and the old kiln.
Fabric field and tissue paper sky. Poly-fill pasted clouds. Harvested my foam baby butterflies off the pumpkin. It still hasn’t gone rotten yet. We are a tad frightened.
Mushy’s Monarch Madness -Stopmotion.
Made some garland for a *certain something* I’ll show below. And added straps to this bag also. I was trying to finish it on pre- procedure night, but that did not happen. Pink peonies, pale Anemones, yellow Lisianthus, and gold billy buttons. Flowers from stretch lace, non stretch lace, peony centers from leather and a linen-wrapped wooden bead. Yo-yo mom’s-prom-dress lame for billy buttons. Greenery made by chain stitching two shades of green yarn into a freakishly long rope, doubling it over, then finger-chain stitching it together. Lace leaves tied in, flower wires wrapped to attach. Loosely used these instructions, if you want to plant some too!: https://somethingturquoise.com/?s=Felt+flowers
Was kindly gifted some grandma’s basement baskets. And a dinosaur head from my dad. XD A photo/stopmotion prop now?
My mom tried some fancy knitting stitch piece panels. The deer are Fair Isle and this diagonal one. She let me transform into bear wear. And she made this knit “star” but she donated it for turning into a Child collar. Added beads and string tassels.
Bear wear! My mom asked for a hat and scarf design. Thought process: EWOK BEAR with TOES (claws?)
Her heartfelt handiwork, made in Hoboken Honey yarn. I can never repay her. Pom poms are hard. She made a matching set for Shasta! (I only added the wooden bead toes and tag.)
Coincidentally, she informed me I needed a new coat around the same time. I don’t like getting premade clothes, it takes my fun out of it and I like to dress weirdly (24/7 skirt and dress obsession-by choice. My mom scorns wearing dresses herself, haha.) But, it also seems wrong to make things for myself and not someone else..even if that someone is a doll. XD. But if she threatens to buy me a store bought outfit, I must indulge! The Khaki+clothesline coat. 42.5 hours for drafting and assembly combined. Had to do a new pattern, because the last one was a bit “off”, on non-transparent paper & lacked notch and seam allowance details. New one on parchment, cut the panels big and sized down, tried on and drafted while I went. My dad’s Khakis -Not because I couldn’t afford fabric, but because using rejects fills me with glee. Two pairs for the outer, one for the inner lining facings. Lining from grandma’s basement satin, underlined/thickened with two layers of old sheets. Hand basted then Interlined for warmth with this old fleece “snuggie” (the famous backwards robe without closures). Hand catch stitched the seam allowances open. Hand top stitch accents done in charcoal Tex 70 upholstery thread in running stitches.
My first closure idea: That I had to cut off…after I remembered the backpack I made with straps from this cord. It bestowed permanent stains/bleeds from the dark dye.
So, I made these loops from an old clothesline and khaki strips. Triple tower of buttons to cradle the loops.
Convertible collar- Draft reference: https://www.clothingpatterns101.com/convertible-collar.html
Then I thought about bears wearing tutus and had to follow through…13 hrs.
Twirl-fullness stretch lace overskirt made from alternating swatches of “coral dream” from the factory shutdown- this too, is what I used for the flower garland. Alternating lower hem for length and to avoid stripe matching. Handsewn backstitch elastic waistband to prevent machine-munching. Satin underskirt is leftover basement loot from jacket lining. Lace accent hems and French seams on each.
*tutu twirling mandatory*
Do you ever bake a bit-batch of cookies to cover your face? Or trudge to the shed side in 30 degree temps after being up all night to chase the sun?
Or shove a straight-off-the-pinestraw, probably parasitic bird nest into your scarf?
*has zero explaination besides #ForeverAwkward, needs a model sister*
Really messed up my wall with this fence.
Ridiculous, but life is too delicious to be adorned in attire one doesn’t adore (if you please, that is!). Storybook style, why not?
I have an unhealthy lack of fear for peer pressure.
POV: Falling wayward on wobbly brace-less legs.
What the garden garland is for:
…My sweet ride. The cheery chariot…A flower cart? Yes. Mine. Not the hospital’s, not borrowed. Shame, insecurity, yet glorious freedom. Got a prescription, but it was taking too long, so this one’s from Amazon. The initial order got lost for weeks, due to holiday shipping..but they then sent one for free, “for the trouble”!? The greatest New Years’ gift I never expected to need. (I am grateful for Tylenol, I was writhing in tears without it a year ago, and I can walk and stand with boned-braces, but meager distances and durations. Untreated severe arthritis pain and weakness via whatever disease.)
Mostly for going shopping/etc, but I’m couchstuck more lately, and been trying it with sewing. I can roll between tables, zip between machines and sit upright without flopping face down at the table every five minutes. Yay! Only tried it in two stores so far. It’s hard to figure out how to unfold the thing from the car. I finally get to use the old rollerskating wrist braces I wasn't ever able to before..as wheeling wrist reinforcements! I apparently went way too fast and was reminded that shortness of breath can be achieved without standing up, haha. Nobody stared, which was surprising. Thanks, kind peoples! It’s a bit easier to blend when you’re lower than the rest of the world. For that I am thankful, as I ordinarily try to hide from humans under my hats, behind shelves, my family, and dogs. Removed the unwanted MEDLINE stickers, added webbing accents and lace wheel caps, ribbon, the garden garland, hybrid bag, and covered the back label with crochet square. I am one happy pseudograndma.
"Hold everything tightly with an open hand"
'Tis all a gift.
Bonus: My grandma, bless her, none of us know how she crams her possessions about so efficiently. She gifted my mom two giant boxes of old yarn in every color.
My mom completed these happy-go-lucky-green leg warmers yesterday! Moms rock. Seven year old me is green-joy-screaming. Green was the only favorite color I ever decided on, probably because I was chronically climbing trees. Now every color is my fancy! What’s yours?
I have more content but better not rudely crash the blogs with images, haha.
Recent renditions of medical happenings without context/the past months of craziness (if I ever get a diagnosis I’ll fill in the gaps and dump it on the internet for fun somewhere, haha).
The hospital keeps approving 100% medical financial aid. I am not worthy, they have been most pleasant to this peasant! ;_; <3
Few weeks ago: SIBO breath test: Positive. “Insurance saved you 2,380+ dollars on this medication”
Return visit to Endo: *Terror in doctor’s eyes as she gives repeat urgent referral to rheumatology and pushes GI and Neurology* Her Notes: “Can’t wait much longer”.
Me: *wakes up from whatever random soft spot where I fell asleep at around 4:30 PM on January 3rd. Crawls upstairs*
*My mom excitedly shouts from below that she got a next-day snow-scare cancellation slot for that more complex GI procedure repeat (she was calling three times/day) of the one that failed in September…and was rescheduled in April*.I didn’t believe it. We departed at 6 am on icy roads, I was suited up with the Pillcam receiver belt and monitor bag, and was under full anesthesia at 10 am, got a deeper EGD with repeat biopsy and endoscopically deployed Pillcam. I awoke sometime later coughing violently and a sore throat that I later discovered was mildly gouged and bleeding.I remember a nurse telling me not to get my neck caught in the hospital bed bars. This was the most difficult awakening from anesthesia so far, we all know I am becoming weaker. Wheelchair ride to the car. I was given instructions to not lie down, sleep or eat until the recording was over (since a camera had been placed into my GI tract these things would affect digestion rate). I didn’t tell them I’d been up since 4:30 the prior evening, there was nothing they could do, haha. So I staggered around the house l until 8pm when the recording was complete, and my mom returned the belt gear the following day.
They actually found something. Multiple somethings. It didn't fail this time.
*Seven days later*
ER adventures. I think I know all the staff there now. They rock, but get that terrified of “oh gosh, we don’t know how to help her” look when I walk in. I feel bad about it. The following is brief, heavily edited, pasted summary of the ER event message I sent to doctors:
“On 1/11/2021 at 2:00 am, I began getting extremely itchy chin/jaw hives, my chronic dry facial flushing got redder, and my chin started swelling. Hadn’t ingested food in hours. Symptoms gradually got worse. At 8:30 am, the swelling worsened, my throat became sore and tight/constricted, and my voice got hoarse/crackly. I arrived at the ER at 9:00 am and was later given a Benadryl IV and nebulized medicine, as I cannot tolerate Prednisone or Epi anymore. I became unable to move, feel my body, or speak a moment after the Benadryl IV. I tried to talk and the words came out as slurred mumbles. They then administered the nebulizer meds. After a few hours I became conscious and able to move/talk again, and was discharged. My limbs were still numb walking out, then my body went completely limp/numb and I collapsed in the exit foyer. Someone lifted me into a wheelchair, we stayed in the waiting room for about 20 more minutes, then used a wheelchair to get to our car and went home. My hands are still numb/have decreased sensation. No past adverse reactions to Benadryl. I did not/cannot use my Epi-pen, as it worsened the unexplained anaphylaxis/type reaction in November 2020, and since in December 2020 the local dental anesthesia Epi caused me to convulse, provoked severe dry facial flushing, gasping/throat constriction, and I momentarily collapsed. Epi always stopped my anaphylactic food reactions in the years when I had food allergies, so this is quite odd. I no longer have any food allergies. This is my second episode of unexplained anaphylaxis/type reaction since I became very systematically ill in 2020. My allergist also ruled out mast-cell reactions with a h1/h2 trial.
I am so glad this happened. Why? Some doctors… they sometimes try to withhold information when they are unable to solve “Zebra” cases. I’ve had to repeatedly dig up my own imaging and lab results and push for things they…neglected to tell me about. This ER trip, coupled with being forced to confront unmentioned, potentially serious medical issues found in the one-week-prior EDG + capsule imaging reports convinced my GI doctor to order a needed, even more complex investigatory procedure. What a timely ER trip, something that I will give thanks for all my days! This one’s scheduled in late June, or maybe, if there is a cancellation, sometime soon. (I do feel bad though, my mom worries and I just blind trust.) I do not mind either way, I have my year planned out, haha. It’s been awesome so far! Last year I didn’t even have a primary care doctor! Wishing worlds of well to any all who actually read this far. Hope it brought some amusement, haha?
Thanks all, that's all. May your day be extraordinary!
Also It's snowing here, right now! And this splendid occasion is something to celebrate! and, here's a picture of a puppy. It's from the card pack that I stole the pre-made envelopes from. I love him far more than I should.
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It's Mask of Light, but all the Matoran on Mata Nui are on their own quests to find the seventh Toa before anyone else like It's a Mad Mad Mad Mad World.
Takua accidentally rides Pewku into a lake of lava and they both slowly become lava bones while Jaller waves from the bankside.
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So this is the end of my slog of prepared reviews to post. I got a plethora of new sets from the Summer release, so I’ll probably look into reviewing those in the coming days, but there’ll be more time needed so it won’t be like I’m spamming the blogs too much. Not that I think anybody’s really noticed or worried about that, anyway; it is kind of interesting that I used to gripe about all sorts of stuff here and now I mainly just stop by to post set reviews. I do miss the days when there was a ton of content in the blogs, but alas times are changing and people are moving to other social networks.
And I’m just as guilty of it, especially because I’ve been taking these mini blog reviews and reposting them on BrickSet. I haven’t posted reviews on BrickSet in 8 years and they have a new system and everything. . . and yet I can skirt moderation because I posted so many CMF reviews (that were marked as helpful) there 8 years ago that I’m listed as a trusted reviewer. I still plan to do the big in-depth reviews on BZPower when I have the chance. . . which I ended up doing for the Ninjago Hydro Bounty last week. But I also like to give quick snippits on other sets without going the full mile I do for a front page review. . . and honestly nobody is seeing them here in my blog, but they might reach an interested audience on BrickSet, who’s inventory of sets remains one of the best on the web. (Their opinionated member base in news comments. . . that’s a different story.) Too bad they don’t seem to allow embedded Instagram photos, which is where I’m posting most of my picts for now.
Of course, here’s the main event…
265 pieces, $29.99
This was not a scene I was expecting to be made into a set. But given that Korg and Miek don’t really show up a whole lot of places, so it’s hard to find a set for them to fit in. Something from Ragnarok, like the jail cells or rainbow bridge battle? Boring or already done in a previous set. They showed up in the final battle of Endgame but were basically just cameos, so if you’re going to get them in a set, might as well be in the one scene they were solely featured in. And so thus we get Thor’s messy room, also known as “it doesn’t look that bad compared to my place, heck you can even see the floor in places!”
First the figs. You get three characters that are all exclusive to this set: Bro Thor, Korg, and Miek. Bro Thor / Fat Thor shows him without a shirt and with a big belly, whose printing overlaps onto the hips (although the coloring isn’t great.) It’s about the best you can do to showcase a chubby stomach in printed form; I would be tempted to suggest that they’d actually make an additional molded piece to create a 3D belly, like the fat-suit that Chris Hemsworth had to actually wear. . . but I guess that would be going a bit far for a humanoid minifig. The head and hairpiece are reused from the other Thor figs in sets this year. Next up is Korg, who is wearing a festive tan skirt with his rocky abbs visible beneath it. I think the headphones he comes with are supposed to be because he’s a gamer now. His rocky hair piece is exclusive, I believe, and does a good job of recreating this character as a fig. Miek was a bit more abstract of a character, so he only gets a printed minifig head atop a few studs. The flower studs give him some added texture, but he remains quite simple.
The main room is pretty cluttered for a LEGO model but has a lot of fun details hidden around it. Pizza boxes litter the house, you have stuff like a frying pan, a whip, a pitch fork, an ore, and a shovel stashed on the walls. There are seem to be two boat models; one on the shelf above the couch and one above the fireplace. (Maybe they’re supposed to resemble something else, but I see them as mini sail boats.) Strangely, there’s a barrel next to the fireplace that contains trans yellow tiles. This is obviously supposed to be ale, but I find it kind of weird that alcohol is included in a LEGO set in such a way. Maybe officially it’s labeled as lemonade?
The couch is the most interesting build of the bunch, featuring a few SNOT techniques to create the cushions. And then you have a lot of detailed stickers hidden around the model. The TV (nicely placed at an angle) showcases the video game, where Korg seems to be a playable character due-wielding Stormbreaker and Mjolnir. Noobmaster is making some comments on the side, and you even see the stud score at the top of the screen, representing many LEGO video games, even if that’s not exactly what they were playing in the scene, heh. (It was Fortnight, right? I dunno, don’t really have the time or budget for games like that.) I don’t know if the number for the score means anything, it’s too long for the set number anyway. A newspaper clipping is included talking about the blip. . . obviously New Asgard is old school if they’re still using print newspaper. Somebody needs to build them a website. The best sticker is the photo of Thor, Valkyrie, Korg, and Miek attached to the wall, a nice memento of their previous adventures.
Once you’ve removed all the clutter, the room itself is extremely basic. The walls use a mixture of different textured bricks to give it a rustic look, and there’s a little stove in the corner. A fun bit of the design is cookie tiles and pizza slices are placed on the floor under other items like the couch, showing just how messy Thor has let his place become. The exterior looks remarkably plain, but the door does open to let you in, even if the ale barrel blocks you from entering too far in. There’s also a small signpost for New Asgard that’s supposed to be set up outside the room. (Full disclosure; in the photos you may notice I’m missing one of the dark tan windowsill pieces. It felt to the carpet while I was building, my dark tan carpet that it blends into too well, and for the life of me I cannot tell where it bounced off to. So, alas, I moved forward without it.)
I think the minifigures are the main draw to this set, and the other pieces don’t necessarily excite me. There are a few fun sand green elements in the couch, and the walls used a lot of SNOT and masonry bricks which could be useful. Oh, plus the angled door frame is here, which isn’t new but I still believe it’s uncommon. The printed pizza tiles and game controllers are also a nice touch. I could’ve gone without the treasure chest however; I’m not a fan of getting the bottom half but not the top half.
It’s a solid display piece that captures a lot of nice details from the movie with some easter eggs hidden around. The characters are great, but there’s a pretty big lack of action features here, so not really a set for playability. I feel this is probably aimed to an older audience who want to collect the figs, but I’m sure any Avengers / Thor fans will appreciate this set for what it is. And honestly, at $29.99, it’s on the cheaper end of things too. I wouldn’t say that this is the set to represent the EndGame movie, but it will do a good job of supplementing your Avenger collection. (And besides, we all needed an Korg fig even if we haven’t admitted it to ourselves yet.)
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Here are the two shirts for BrickFair/BZPower this year! (Give or take a shade of orange or yellow. Touching that up.)
The teal is the primary shirt. You can order a yellow shirt if you ALSO order a teal shirt. (To keep costs down like 2019's orange shirt, which was still a dollar more because so few people wanted it.)
*Shirts are $10 each (unless we need to bump up the yellow, as explained). *Please message ChocolateFrogs your order: Shirt(s) and size(s) by Friday night, 6/25. *Reminder we're only giving these out at BrickFair VA 2021 in August. If you can not make it, ask a friend who is going to order for you. We're not bothering with mailing out orders or keeping track of who ordered what but someone else it picking it up or whatever.
Thanks for reading!
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I’ve done this a couple of times here before (although I didn’t mean for 6 months to pass before doing another one of these, oops) so I won’t explain it again. You can see my past two here:
And I’ll be using my playlist of music from 2017 (557 songs) for this one; share yours below if you want to.
1. What is my life’s philosophy?
“Fine” – Tayler Buono (not good or bad, just fine)
2. What will my last words be?
“Ground Control” – All Time Low; Tegan and Sara (So my death’s gonna be plane related? Ominous)
3. How am I Feeling today?
“Want You Back” – HAIM (ha, ha, NO)
4. What is my Theme song?
“Totalizer” – Charly Bliss (uh…*checks Genius* alright, next)
5. What song will be played at my wedding?
“Give Me Your Word” – Bella Goldwin (I’ll take it)
6. What song will be played at my funeral?
“Life Goes On” – Bailey Bryan (well, not my life, but good advice anyway)
7. How will I be remembered?
“Just A Crush” – Grace Vanderwal (whoa)
8. What is some good advice for me?
“Big Girls Cry” – Mimoza (wrong gender, but sure)
9. What’s my life’s dream?
“Empty” – Olivia O’Brien (what?)
10. What’s my kind of lady/man?
“Something To Tell You” – HAIM (no comment)
11. How do people see me?
“High Enough” – K.Flay (um, OK, next)
12. How would I describe this page?
“Bleachers” – Jillian Jacqueline (another what?)
13. How would I describe my best friend?
“Bloom” – Marnie (uh, ok)
14. What’s in store for this week?
“No Love” – Olivia O’Brien (OUCH)
15. How would I describe my parents?
“Sleep” – Timothy Heller (ha)
16. If I had one wish, what would I wish for?
“Too Many Love Songs” – Maggie Rose (probably not)
17. What do my friends think of me?
“(Not) The One” – Bebe Rexha (I think that’s a good thing?)
18. What is said about me behind my back?
“Oh Love” – MisterWives (no comment)
19. What do I think of this questionnaire?
“Fly high” – DREAMCATCHER (cool story)
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As something of a realist, I knew going into this year that fangirl and fanboy pipe dreams of "The Return of BIONICLE" for the 20th anniversary was crazy talk. As much as I love the original run of BIONICLE from 2001 to 2010, there was no way in Karzahni that LEGO was going to revive the theme just for an anniversary year. It's a major one, but still. BIONICLE is done. No need to "continue" the story or reboot it (2015 and 2016 showed how poorly the latter went).
My prognostication was we'd likely get something like a GWP or one-off trinket by the summer to commemorate the worldwide release of BIONICLE (Europe had the Toa and Turaga from the start of 2001, but the US and Canadian markets didn't see BIONICLE sets on shelves until July). On the lower end, I figured we might be lucky to see prints of, say, Kanohi masks on minifigure torsos scattered throughout CITY sets or sets from another theme.
Then I found out about this "20 Years of LEGO Harry Potter" nonsense. Wow, I mean, I know LEGO loves money (and I write that realistically, with no chagrin or sarcasm), but Harry Potter is beyond a cash grab at this point. Especially considering several years went by when LEGO didn't produce a single Harry Potter anything. Why celebrate that, of all LEGO themes?
But that's not even why I'm mad. It was the sight of a sticker on a piece in one of these anniversary sets that really spelled it out for me. In what looks like a star chart of constellations in whatever weird, transphobic, "magic" universe Harry Potter is set in, one of the designers snuck in a constellation that forms the shape of the Kanohi Hau, a symbol of BIONICLE as a whole.
Great. Bravo. Slow clap. See that BIONICLE fans???? BIONICLE LIVES!!! Happy 20th anniversary! Watch my YouTube video to see how LEGO CELEBRATES BIONICLE - SECRET COMEBACK?!?!?
Blood from a (Makoki) stone, people. I kept my expectations in check, but now, after seeing this "tribute" in one of the new Harry Potter sets, I'm beginning to wonder if I was the foolish BIONICLE fan too optimistic for LEGO to pay respects to one of the greatest themes they ever produced? Is this all we're getting for acknowledgment of BIONICLE's 20th anniversary? Or is there a leak to come of something just a tad more substantial?
We can only hope. If this is it, though, it will be a very sad footnote to one of the best original stories I've ever heard and participated in. Reduced to a single image in a set celebrating the 20th anniversary of another, non-LEGO, IP.
Well, there's always the 50th anniversary...
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So I saw this post elsewhere on the internet about a dude who bought so-so paintings from thrift shops and added Star Wars elements to them. My best friend (who sent me this mug from previous blog entry) came to surprise me right before COVID hit, and we went thrift shopping, and I got a painting (pictured above, but without the star wars stuff). Said friend was an art major in college, and now I have an awesome star wars painting hanging up!! Definitely going to treasure it forever. I love that the droid is picking the flower
Update on the Ko-Koro Express - gift went over well, my folks loved it, but the pup, Dakota (sometimes goes by Dog-kota) felt insecure. But fear not, he was promptly and repeatedly assured that he is still a good boy, just sometimes a noisy boy.
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Once something is close enough to pass through the skin, it enters the black hole in your chest that formed from the self-destructive weight of the questions that are at the end of their lives, as old as anyone has ever been, but also just as young as you. "Who am I?" "What is the meaning of life?" which invariably means, "what is the meaning of my life?" It is said to teach is to learn. How can you teach something only you will ever truly understand? With that in mind, how can you ever truly learn what you know?
Suppose you are trying to describe a friend to someone else. You can use the words most of us would use; loyal, kind, funny (for some of them). You could very well go far, far beyond that. But what that friend is to you is something that can never be articulated fully because no one else is you. To anyone else that friend is just another person, or perhaps their friend, not yours. Once something is a part of you, you can only be and feel it, never know it, because the black hole questions will never stop sucking you in.
I can describe my childhood home to you, can draw a blueprint for you. I can tell you that my room was blue and had a window looking out on the street, and right outside was the staircase that led down to the front door. I can even tell you how that scared me as a child because on nights when I couldn't get to sleep and heard things going bump I'd imagine some axe-wielding madman would kick in the door and come right up and chop me to bits first. But I can never make you understand what it was to me, what it was to live there. It's in my bones, not my head. If I break off a piece of me and give it to you, it will wither and die.
I could, however, tell you in no uncertain terms what the home of someone I know is. I might not remember how many chairs are around the kitchen table or what color the walls are, but I could tell you what it's like to be there, what's on the air. How it feels in that house. That place is nowhere near the event horizon.
This trick works for people, too, and the further they are from you the sharper the image is. I can tell you more about a stranger passing on the street from the way they walk, how they carry themselves. What they wear and how they speak, what's in their eyes. Do they grimace or just roll their eyes when they step in that puddle? When I look at my dearest friends the lens is blurry with love and years of memory. The woman opposite me in the waiting room is a neon sign.
We grasp and flail through our lives and anything we manage to grab ahold of is brought in close, too close, lost and kept forever. You will never stop asking who you are, but people on distant and lonely planets of their own are putting together the puzzle of you. The further from your reach they are, the bigger the piece they've got.
You may stumble through darkness, but know that in the telescopes of unseen strangers, in untarnished clarity, the real you burns.
The fire that was threatening my local area is mostly contained. Actually it has been for two weeks or so. Evacuation orders are probably almost entirely lifted by now except for some small area. So that's mostly good. It did not come without losses for many people, though.
But it's California, and we're a box of matches when it comes down to it. Hotspot detection satellites are lighting up the state like a Christmas tree. That's why even though we (folks in my area) aren't being immediately threatened by fires, we're still breathing near toxic air, ash is falling down like a light sprinkle of snow, and everything looks like Las Vegas from Blade Runner 2049 (which, not fun fact, the look was inspired by this very phenomenon). And many, many people are still being threatened by fires.
And we aren't even in fire season yet. October is when we start to see stronger winds, when things can get really bad. But, then, at this rate, what will be left to burn?
What a miserable end of summer.
Lo, a rare iaredius! Fond of nebulae and Roman art, I have fused them. First made a glowing blue edged edit of dynastic emblem of the Comnenus dynasty, then made my own personal monogram. Tired of a plain black background with only this blue bird, I made the creature somewhat holographic and placed a befitting nebula as its background. Behold!