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So what have we been up to? Last weekend we ran some errands and went to the Anime North staff meeting and went to the comic book show up on Wilson and spent some money on comics. Actually came back with a stack of fairly cheap stuff in our interest areas - Archies, Harveys, listening to bores bore dealers with stories about how Jim Steranko was going to draw The Shadow for DC while standing in front of the boxes we want to dig through. Weather has been rain, for the most part. Rain this weekend too, which means we're probably not going to go much of anywhere. I still have a ton of Anime North stuff to do. Anime Hell is mostly finished, though.

I think this weekend is the local literary SF con. I've never attended except to drop off flyers and hang out in the Anime North-sponsored con suite. I don't know if they're doing that this year, I haven't heard much about the show at all, to be honest. The weather being what it is, and tons of roads getting closed for a marathon on Sunday, it's not likely we're going to be out of the house much at all.

I did touch base with a friend who I hadn't heard from in a few years, he and his family are doing OK,
though struggling with some issues that are pretty far outside my area of expertise. Not much I can do but make sympathetic noises. Not that we don't have our own challenges, but they seem a little smaller these days.

I go to the ophthalmologist for a checkup on Wednesday, on Saturday the 13th I go to the dentist, we get Victoria Day off on the 22nd, and then I get Thurs-Mon off for Anime North. At some point between now and then I hope the rain stops.
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This week's Stupid Comics takes a deep dive into vintage Ontario Hydro safety comics, and for those who don't live in Ontario, "hydro" means "electricity"! Because that's how Ontario rolls!




Stay away from power lines with Mister Kitty's Stupid Comics!

http://misterkitty.org/extras/stupidcovers/stupidcomics531.html
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Batwoman gets super powers and all Superman and Batman can do is worry about shutting her down in this week's super-misogynistic Stupid Comics!!

http://misterkitty.org/extras/stupidcovers/stupidcomics530.html


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Here's what's happening for the rest of the year for us, with a few updates.

April 29 - Anime North Staff Meeting

April 30 - Toronto Comic Book Show http://www.torontocomicbookshow.com/

May 7 - Ancaster Collectorfest http://www.collectorshows.ca/Shows/TOY_2017-05-07.php

May 13-14 - TCAF http://www.torontocomics.com/
This is downtown and free and we might just drop in!

May 22- Anime North Staff Meeting

May 26-28 - Anime North http://www.animenorth.com/live/
Going to be doing Anime Hell and some panels at this one!

June 4 - Ancaster Collectibles Extravanganza http://www.collectorshows.ca/Shows/TOY_2017-06-04.php

June 9-11 - Anime Next http://www.animenext.org/
There's been some talk about us attending this show... but that was last year, and I haven't heard anything subsequently, so I'm not gonna worry about this one.

June 25 - Toronto Comic Book Show http://www.torontocomicbookshow.com/

June 25 - Ancaster Nostalgia Show http://www.collectorshows.ca/Shows/NOS_2017-06-25.php

July ? - Liberty Village Yard Sale
No date announced yet, but this was a fun neighborhood thing we did last summer and hope to do it again this year.

July 4th? At some point around this time period we will be on vacation and it'll involve Atlanta and a beach, probably.

July 28-30 - Con Bravo http://2016.conbravo.com/
We missed this one last year but we might swing by this year. There's a guy doing a panel about making fun of stuff, and he emailed us about being on it with him, so we just might be on a panel!

August 6 - Toronto Comic Book Show http://www.torontocomicbookshow.com/

August ? - Zine Dream http://zinedream.com/
No date announced yet but our intention is to get a table & sell some zines!

Sept. 24 - Toronto Comic Book Show http://www.torontocomicbookshow.com/

Sept 28 - Oct 1 AWA http://awa-con.com/
Gonna be doing Anime Hell and panels at this one too, obvs

Nov. 26 - Toronto Comic Book Show http://www.torontocomicbookshow.com/
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http://www.vulture.com/2017/04/s-town-podcast-visiting-woodstock-alabama.html?mid=twitter_vulture

been reading this article (edited to include link) about the NPR series "S-Town", about Woodstock Alabama and the local eccentric and murder and the claustrophobic trapped nature of small towns, small Southern towns. Most of the citizens aren't happy about being the latest small town being held up to the gaze of the wider world; I don't blame 'em, for the most part. I had to look it up on the map and it's south of Birmingham on I-20, halfway to Tuscaloosa, so it's a town I've been through, at least technically.

I really like that part of the state, it's all piney woods and foothills and rivers. Birmingham is big enough to have interesting people and events, but not so big you can't get across town in ten minutes.

I have a friend that lives out that way that I haven't heard from in a while. He's not on social media, the only email I have for him is connected to a job I don't think he has any more, the last time I phoned nobody answered, I don't know what's going on with him and his family and I wanna get back in touch, but I don't want to, you know, bug somebody unnecessarily just so I can say "hey man, what's up?"

I need to take a month off work and stay at my parents house and just spend a month tooling around the South, seeing old friends, digging through crumbling ruins, sweating like a pig, getting lost on backwoods state roads.
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So a while back - like ten years ago - I wrote a Let's Anime blog post about Gatchaman. Yeah, I've been writing that blog for ten years. Whatever. Anyway, I wrote this really generic bare-bones broad-brush sort of piece about Gatchaman, and then I sort of forgot about it until a week ago.

A week ago I got another one of those emails from Google where they tell me that a blog post has been put into 'draft' because of reported DMCA copyright infringement. The Gatchaman post from '07 was that post. Just like I did with the Space Battleship Yamato post, I filed a counter-claim. Google responded by saying, in essence, "we dunno what you're talking about."

I'm fairly certain these DMCA reports are being generated by a 'bot that a service uses to search the internets for URLs that contain the names of properties, properties owned by the corporations that hired the service. You hire the service, tell it the names of the things you own, it activates its DMCA-bot 9000 and that bot scours the Web looking for illegal streaming sites, Megauploads, and other infringements thereof.

So my counter claim being fruitless, I bit the bullet and edited the post. I changed the title so that it no longer contained the words "science ninja team gatchaman" and I took the opportunity to go into the text and fix links, add some more information, throw in some more images, and generally do the kind of maintenance that most older posts tend to need. That's what I like about blogging as opposed to print; blog posts can be repaired, enhanced, and otherwise changed as necessary.

SO, if you want to read about Battle Of The Planets aka Gatchaman aka G-Force aka Eagle Riders, please enjoy!

http://letsanime.blogspot.com/2017/04/your-bird-ninja-update.html


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Kung Fu? Cultural appropriation? Shark punching? Stupid Comics? Stupid Comics!!

http://misterkitty.org/extras/stupidcovers/stupidcomics529.html


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http://atlanta.curbed.com/2017/4/20/15364780/west-end-atlanta-craftsman-bungalow-for-sale

Just a placeholder to remind myself to send the URL to family later. My grandparents had a Craftsman a few blocks from this place that was in the family until the '90s, at which point it was in terrible shape and was sold. We spent a weekend clearing the place out and it was hoarded up, holes in the floor and ceiling, cats coming in and out of the place, neighbors stealing electricity, drug deals happening on the corner, one house on the block getting gentrified and the rest waiting for their chance.

The house in the link, at least the upper floors, really resembles my family's place in layout. However, you can see that it's been remodeled and well kept up. And there's a basement to the linked listing, my family's place did not have a basement that I recall.

I can remember as a young adult thinking how cool it would be to move back into the city and be an urban pioneer. If I was living in Atlanta and was younger and had more handyman expertise, more resources, and more time, maybe I'd do that. But the reality of living in a marginal neighborhood is, well, it's a full time job, leaving no time for things like Japanese cartoon conventions.

Anyway, it's nice to see the neighborhood coming back in a big, nice home, real-estate investment sort of way. Only took, what, fifty years?
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I marked the calendar "A3" and couldn't remember why, and now I remembered .

So this Sunday is the last day the Kickstarter for Digital Manga's Wonder Three is open. The project got funded and it's going to happen, and so if I want some Wonder Three comics and also some Ambassador Magma comics, then I need to throw them some money before Sunday.

The problem is that I want Wonder Three comics and Ambassador Magma comics, but I don't want to support Digital Manga's business model, which is to use Kickstarter as a pre-order service. I understand why they're operating like this - they get a chunk of capital up front and they can pay their bills and deliver a product. What I dislike is that Tezuka's manga library is essentially pieced out a bit at a time in varying degrees of availability and cost, by a company that apparently intends to release every single thing Tezuka ever drew, to a readership increasingly tired of the endless promotions and emails and exhortations to spread the word. We just want to buy the comics.

They made one attempt to release W3 previously, as part of a big package of titles, in a KS campaign that failed. This current attempt is a much less ambitious package, and was financed relatively quickly.

Back when DM first started crowd-funding their Tezuka projects, there was a lot of goodwill among the classic anime nerds I know on Twitter and elsewhere, and their projects got a lot of buzz and discussion. But when EVERY project DM started wound up being a crowd-funding plea, when they started failing to deliver extras and goal rewards, and when their loudest social media backers started getting huffy and defensive, that's when I backed off supporting DM, and I haven't seen the same kind of signal boosting lately that their earlier projects got. In fact this latest one has been met with silence from people that normally would be mocking DM, and I suspect it's because this latest project is just the right size to actually get people to fund it, but they feel embarrassed supporting DM's Kickstarters. And it's OK, I understand. I've thrown my fair share of shade at DM and yet I'm really tempted by this one myself.

The package that would get me both the W3 and the Ambassador Magma print editions will cost me $66 US - that's $89 Canadian, which is a lot of money to lay out for two books. In fact, it's too much money for me right now. Ethical quandary solved. If they ever get released retail, maybe I'll pick them up. If not, I'll live. I like Wonder Three and Ambassador Magma, but I don't like them enough to spend $45 each for black and white softcover books.
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I had Friday off so we got the bikes out and did some riding, and then Saturday it didn't rain as much as it said it was going to, so we got the bikes out and did some riding, and Sunday we, yes, got the bikes out and did some riding. I moved the shift over a little, and oiled it, and put some chain lube on the chain. Shain had to get a tire patched. We went down the Lakeshore trail to the bridge and back on Friday, Saturday the other direction to Queens Quay, and Sunday we went down King to Roncesvalles and had lunch at Cardinal Rule, and then through alleys back up Queen, over to home, back again down King and over to Trinity-Bellwoods Park to watch the dogs. I'm feeling it in my butt, because my seat isn't as padded as it maybe could be, and my thumbs are feeling the three days of gripping handlebars, and my legs are getting that "oh, you've been bike riding" feeling.

The bike-riding muscle memory is coming back, and I wasn't sure how well I'd be dealing with coaster brakes after years of handlebar brakes, but I haven't crashed into anything yet, so I guess it's OK. I need to get a basket for the bike and maybe some more reflectors, and maybe a water bottle holder? But if I get a basket, I could put my water, like, IN the basket, right? I might go full beater and put a milk crate on the bike, see how that works out.

When not bike riding, we have been watching the new MST3K - we're four in and it seems to be getting up to speed nicely, though it's very "Joel" in some ways, not all of them in the service of laughs, but darned if he won't keep doing something he thinks is amusing long after anyone else finds it amusing or even explicable. Also: Attack On Titan season 2. Also; drawing comics and putting Anime Hell together. It was a pleasant long weekend. More like that please.
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claw your way back to some semblance of mental health with the help of Blondie, Dagwood, and their legion of identical puppies this week at Mister Kitty's Stupid Comics!

http://misterkitty.org/extras/stupidcovers/stupidcomics528.html





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http://www.pretty-terrible.com/odyssey-con-fucks-up-but-good/

The gist is that predatory harassers in Wisconsin fandom have made a name for themselves, more or less. That dude who got permanently banned from WisCon? Don't make him your guest relations director. That's a no-brainer. And when you do, and your guests start saying, hey, wait a minute, don't double down on the no-braining.

We're seeing a fascinating time in fandom as these cranky old beardos get elbowed out of the way by the the less willing to put up with nonsense & more willing to say "this is unacceptable" in a way that doesn't let fandom hide in the 'fans are slans' cave away from the scary mundanes and their sportsballs.

I've been lucky in that the harasser situations I was personally involved with were dealing with harassers who weren't entrenched in the convention power structure. We could boot their butts to the curb and the facility would issue a criminal trespass warning and that would be it. Dealing with this situation when it involves upper level staff is a whole different beast. Glad I never had to deal with it.

Sad part is that this is the first I've ever heard of "Odysseycon", which is going into its tenth year of being a thing that happens. Not the way you want people to hear about your con, guys.
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still some snow on the ground!
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I know that it's 2017 and making fun of furries is sooooo 1998. But come on.

goofy Twitter talk about "punching Nazis" irritates a gang of alt-right Sovereign Citizen furbabies, led by a registered sex offender, leading to a hilariously fake "cease and desist" letter and, oh, all kinds of fandumb.

http://dogpatch.press/2017/04/10/rocky-mountain-fur-con-threat/

It's not happening in 1998, it's happening now! Outstanding.
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Thanks to the participation of Steve Harrison, who dug these schedules out of his archives, the new Let's Anime is all about the C/FO's anime room at the 1984 Worldcon, "L.A. Con II", and how its impact continues to resonate with the field.




It's a trip back in time complete with Tomino in Mickey Mouse ears, all at Let's Anime! http://letsanime.blogspot.ca/2017/04/worldcon-84-anime-room-experience.html

and yes

Apr. 7th, 2017 05:06 pm
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Yes, last weekend we drove over to Rochester. The border crossing was super easy, barely any lineup, showed our passports, said where we lived and what we were crossing the border for. I think the magic words are "antique mall", that tells the border guys that we are boring middle aged people.

The Rochester mall is OK. Lots of showcases. I honestly think the Salamanca store is larger, so that's one on them. I bought a big stack of comics in one lot, some of which are Stupid Comics fodder and some of which aren't. Bartertown Collectibles has some neat stuff, got a replacement Gordian "Garbin" robot. We went to Hammergirl Anime, which serves the large RIT anime fan community with what's basically an anime con in a strip mall - manga, DVDs, figures, kits, and tables for card gaming. The place was jumping. Got a new coffee table and did some Target shopping and took the long way home along the lakeshore. Nearly got smacked by a deer and got home pretty late. Not a lot of late night dining options on the QEW.

Rochester is an interesting town, the Eastman Kodak plant is still there and is huge, seems like it's off in its own little pocket of America. It really isn't on the way to anywhere else, you're there because you want to be there, I guess.

This weekend we haven't got any plans other than get outside, maybe ride bikes. I've got lots of AN prep work to do. There's a "weird club" video thing at a bar Sunday night we might hit. Monday is Passover and I took the day off to go do the Seder with Shain's relatives. Friday's Good Friday so it's a short week.
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This week's Stupid Comics takes an enchanted journey through a mystical land where dreams of dragons and unicorns come to life!




Yes, it's fantasyland in thrilling black and white, this week at Mister Kitty's Stupid Comics!

http://misterkitty.org/extras/stupidcovers/stupidcomics527.html
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They keep making Hollywood adaptations of Japanese animation properties, and these adaptations keep underperforming.

Astro Boy (2009) Opening Weekend: $6,702,923, lifetime worldwide $39,886,986

Speed Racer (2008) Opening Weekend: $18,561,337, lifetime worldwide $93,945,766

Dragonball Evolution (2009) Opening Weekend: $4,756,488, lifetime worldwide $57,497,699

Ghost in the Shell (2017) Opening Weekend: $18,676,033, worldwide so far: $72,544,875

Dragonball was a major bomb, the best you can say about Speed Racer is that it might actually achieve 'cult' status, Astro Boy tanked so hard it took down its studio, and Ghost in The Shell may limp to 100 million, but that's a big maybe.

In the pipeline: Akira, Star Blazers, Robotech, Battle Angel Alita, Beyblade, Naruto, Bleach... some of these have been in the works for years, some will never get made, some might actually reach the finish line, and the question still remains "why?" None of these films have done anywhere near the business of even a mid-tier superhero movie (Ant-Man, $500 million, Dr. Strange, $677 million, Man Of Steel, $668 million). This Hollywood anime thing is a fad that stubbornly resists every attempt to bring it forth into life. It's not gonna happen. Stop already.

Meanwhile, the Buena Vista release of "Spirited Away", an actual Japanese animated film, its lifetime gross? $274,925,095. That's three Speed Racers. Just release the Japanese films and have done with it, guys. Save everybody the effort.
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It's goose breeding season and that means that there is a breeding pair that picked my workplace parking lot as their territory, and that means when I passed Mr Goose pulling into the lot today, he got up, he put his head down, and he came straight at my car like he meant business. That's a first for me.
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If you're reading this then you are more than welcome to check out the Classic Anime community - https://classic-anime.dreamwidth.org/ - I'm porting over the LJ Classic-Anime group and having to do it manually because the auto function isn't working for some reason. Anyway, if you like classic anime then that is the place for you at DW! Unless there's another classic anime community at DW I don't know about.

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