Letters to Holly

Friday, August 20

Thinning and Weeding and Working

The boy has grown. As I put him on my lap for a feeding, he seemed much heavier and much longer. His proportions are completely off, as if he walked out of a mannerist painting. His torso is about twice as long, and his head seems tiny. His spurt is in full flower. He chirps so much now we call him a mouse droid. Soon, he will be a jawa.

I emailed the derby contact to see what's going on with the logo entry, and she said the logo would soon make the rounds with the team for feedback. I'm content with the confirmation that the logos made it through email.

New webcomics are up here.

Your Relieved Sister presented her workshop yesterday and spent many an hour talking to the teacher now manning her AP class. School starts next week, but the first home football game of the season is tonight. We may drop by the stadium to see the first band performance. She loves watching them. I wasn't in band when I was in school, but the majority of my friends were. I can appreciate watching the performances, but I don't have the same visceral thrill. She's also supporting her former/future students, and I'm for that. When the band held a car-washing fundraiser a few years back, the kids didn't pack any food. This was right outside a local grocery store, and I bought them lunch and snacks so the money they raised wouldn't be split for food costs. I like to think they saw it as indirect help from Your Supportive Sister. To celebrate making it to this side of the workshop, we're hoping to grab ice cream inside the forest. Yes, our trees ooze dairy instead of sap. Children gnaw on the branches like desperate vampires.

The garden is on its last legs. The larger tomatoes are cracking from the excessive rainfall, bu they aren't quite ripe enough to pick. The carrot plants yielded nothing despite my best efforts to keep them separate from the creeping grass. The squash vines withered. The pepper plants, however, may outlive us all, and the cherry tomatoes are turning red. I sincerely have to prevent myself from eating them straight off the vine. I save them for salads and pizza toppings.

Picture of the Day
"And now I shall perform Van Halen's Eruption. You may want to step back."

Wednesday, August 18

Right. Star Wars Stuff

Catch them before they're gone.

Here's the newly unveiled scene from Return of the Jedi. As of this morning, this link worked. It's possible the blog-embedding code was deactivated, so here's the direct link.

As promised, here are the Bigg scenes removed from Star Wars.


For those of us who bought the official Marvel Comics adaptation after seeing the movie, we knew about this scene.

It was in the comic. So was the Jabba scene with Han. Marvel apparently worked from a script and reference photos of the film prior to the final edit. Also, it seems the reference pictures were black and white. Look at how they colored this rebel trooper.

And Jabba's appearance was apparently made up in Marvel's office. None of the cantina aliens looks like this.

The comics were the only way we kids who lived across town from the movie theatre could relive the film with any degree of fidelity. Seeing a movie more than once in a theatre was, pardon the pun, an alien concept to me.

So we don't leave out Empire, here's a scene cut from that film.

I remember a scene from Return where Jabba made Leia drink from his mug on the barge. That scene was cut before the movie made it to cable and then the networks.

Monday, August 16

So, So Much.

The first piece of news from this weekend is from Lucasfilm: Star Wars will move to Blu-Ray. Lucas himself says the new format films will be the special editions released in the late '90s. The originals, he said, would cost too much to polish. But, the new versions will include scenes deleted from the theatrical releases, meaning there are bits in these Blu-Rays that we have never seen. Things like this from the beginning of Return:

An unusually brain-taxing day at work left me dead from the neck up, but we began the birthday celebrations with pizza and wings. There must have also been beer because I don't remember much else.

On Saturday, Your Sis arranged for two babysitters for our two planned events. That morning we fled to the Highway 25 to see the earliest showing of Scott Pilgrim. But, first, I had to salvage the garden from a massive thunderstorm. Vines and plants were askew and akimbo and a-fucked up. The ground is saturated to the point the stakes can't stay upright. The garden soil has gone full Dagobah. I fixed what I could before the first sitter arrived. She is a former student of Your Sister's; in fact, she arranged the Voldemort cake. We have the short training lecture down pat and were out the door in a flash.

Your Sis went berzonkers when she saw the Dunkin Donuts near the movie theatre. We hit a lot of them during our Boston trips, and they're coffee won me over to the dark-drink side. We bought our tickets at the theatre and went back to grab coffee and doughnuts. They were snuck in along with our regular movie food. It wasn't difficult at all. I'm not sure the employees cared. Let me establish this now and forever more: Dunkin Donuts is missing a GOLDMINE by not selling inside theatres. It really works with buttered popcorn. Truly, truly decadent. Also the movie was a blast. Your Sister -- who never laughs at comedies -- laughed out loud. See it on a big screen while you can; the box-office was poor. The film ends differently than the comics, but it's not a significant difference.

That evening we jaunted to the Music Center for a live performance of Prairie Home Companion. It was not broadcast, but we assume it was taped. We ordered our seats early to guarantee we would not get lawn seats. We lucked out with those at the last show we went to. Sure enough, as soon as we checked the weather on our superspy phones, the clouds opened up, and it poured for more than an hour. Those with lawn seats had nowhere to go, and many people had no rain provisions. Unlike the radio show, this performance was three hours long, a possibility we warned the second sitter about. We got home before midnight, and I drove her back home. Both sitters said our notes were fine and the baby is cute.

Your Sister felt dizzy Sunday and stayed indoors. I ran the errands and did laundry. I enjoyed the memory of the previous days' coffee and ordered a cuppa from Starbucks. It was not the same. Not even close. I found out that there was a Scott Pilgrim video game from the magical PlayStation 3 servers, and I bought it and played it. It's very fun, and it's designed to look like the late-80s arcade fight games Scott would have grown up playing. It's made for multiple players to play at one time, so we can save you a seat in front of the console when you next visit.

As I tried to hush the house for Your Sleeping Sister, we of course got a phone call. It was the theatre again asking me to join the show. They baited the offer well: I was told they had a one-scene part with a lot of laugh lines. And I was told the theatre knew that I had chosen to "help [Your Sister] to care for the baby." And that's when the sales pitch crashed and burned again. I understand it's a generational thing, but I'm not "helping her" care for the bay. It's our baby. I just as responsible for making sure he doesn't burst into flames. This isn't a hobby I'm encouraging her in. It;s our child-ling. It's my fucking son. So now, I shan't prance about at the legion hall while Your Sister loses more sleep and decent eating habits. I hope this will be the last call on this matter.

I restored the garden after the previous evening's storm. We sat down to watch the ultimate cut of Watchmen, and we gave up with about an hour to go. It's a long, long version, superior to the theatrical version, but when the boy goes to sleep at night, we do too. We get our sleep while we can.

This morning, I again had to fix the garden after another storm. We're supposed to be drenched all week.