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Emerald City 2013!

Posted in comic books with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 11, 2013 by vagabondsaint

Yes, I went to Emerald City Comic Convention (ECCC) this year.  Due to time and budget constraints, I could only go for one day, Sunday, but it was still a pretty good day!  These are my pictures from the day:

Magneto and Mystique, from the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants Whose Codenames Start With 'M'

Magneto and Mystique, from the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants Whose Codenames Start With ‘M’

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HawkgirL, who you’d really think would be cosplayed more often but isn’t. . .

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I confess to this now: I totally love Flo from the Progressive commercials. She can sell me insurance anytime!

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Catwoman, stuck on rocks. . .I guess climbing trees got old?

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Gaze upon his works, ye mighty, and despair! Or just admire his Ozymandias costume, whatever.

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This is actually just one guy, wearing the best (and possibly only) Denny O’Neil/Gerry Conway costume EVER.

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In retrospect, pinching Batgirl’s bum as she walked by was a BAD idea. . .

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Lady Comedian and. . .her accountant? I dunno what they guy in the tie was going for there.

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In retrospect, pinching Batgirl’s bum while she walked by and was within radio range of Batman was a TERRIFICALLY BAD idea. . .

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Matt Wagner drew a neat little sketch on my Batman/Grendel cover!

Matt Wagner again, on the inside cover of my Grendel: Devil by the Deed hardcover!  He was AWESOME!

Matt Wagner again, on the inside cover of my Grendel: Devil by the Deed hardcover! He was AWESOME!

Those are my pics!  I also got stuff signed by Darick Robertson, Garth Ennis, Howard Chaykin, and numerous others!

See you soon!

VS  – 3.11.13

 

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LiveBlogging A Comic Book Convention

Posted in comic books, politics, randoma, war with tags , , on January 28, 2009 by vagabondsaint

Last Saturday, I worked for my friend G at a comic-book convention.  For some reason as yet unknown to me, possibly sleep-deprivation, I decided it would be interesting to live-blog the con.  Unfortunately, I had no internet access from there, so I did the next best thing:  I took notes.  Come join the fun!

8:30 – 10:00 AM – Setting up for the show.  Somehow G mishears my suggestion to bring Febreeze in case of stinky fanboys as a suggestion that we bring it for the crotch of a Buffy the Vampire Slayer statue.  The series of jokes resulting from said misunderstanding eventually lead to the concept of Schroedinger’s Crotch, i.e., all crotches are simultaneously stank and not stank, and there’s no way to know for sure which until it’s too late to back out gracefully.  (I suppose the female equivalent would be Schroedinger’s Penis, which is simultaneously perfect and woefully inadequate, with, again, no way of knowing for sure which it is until it’s too late to back out gracefully.)  Also, venue smells like a school cafeteria.  Further investigation reveals that the venue is, in fact, a school cafeteria.  Will be interesting to see if cafeteria smell overrides fanboy funk.

10 AM – Convention doors open to the public.  Remind myself to get something for daughter.  Remind myself to fight urge to get bunch of stuff for myself.

10:20 AM – Greatest non-“Schroedinger’s Crotch” line of the day thus far: “Let’s put the Iron Fist in the box.”  (It was a day for juvenile humour, okay?)

11:30 AM – Got a bunch of stuff for myself.

11:58 AM – Valuable lesson learned: do not eat Spicy Thai chips on an empty stomach.

12:15 PM – Noticed there has actually been a fair number of attractive women here.  Did they get lost on their way to someplace that attractive women go on Saturdays?

12:27 PM – Best out-of-context line: “It’s old and furry.”

1:15 PM – Sleeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeepy.

1:45 PM – Asked 7- or 8-year-old if they liked the Powerpuff Girls.  “I’m a boy!” the soft-voiced, long-haired child replied.  Then get a bloody haircut, hippie child, I thought.  Trust me, that kid looked like a girl.

1:58 PM – Second-best out-of-context quote:  “You gotta go with the big package.”

2:06 PM – Four hours in and no sign of an adult of ambiguous gender.  Starting to wonder if I was on my way to a comic-con and got lost in someplace cool.  (I maintain that that kid really looked like a girl.)

2:30 PM – Bought stuff for daughter and for ladylove.  Bought more stuff for self.

3:00 PM – Bored.  One hour left in convention; crowds dwindling and some vendors have already left.  Decided to start making shit up to finish blog.

3:10 PM – A large group of fanboys in long coats have thrown off their coats to reveal a number of cybernetic implants and chests that lack hair and resemble raw chicken breasts.  They declare that they are the D&D Bandits (Deadly & Dangerous) and they’ve come to loot the convention and sell everything on Ebay.  Due to their large number of apparently homemade implants, they are the first fanboys I’ve ever seen with a valid excuse for not showering.

3:12 PM – The D&D Bandits’ attempts to rip off the convention are interrupted by a group of very very attractive women in stiletto hells, fishnets, and PVC outfits that barely hold back large bosoms.  Wielding whips, nunchuks, paddles, and floggers, and calling themselves Hot-Ass Women Tired of Male Assholes and Makking Acceptable Slaves (HAWT MAMAS), they declare their intention to take every male in the building away to be sex slaves in their lair.  While nearly every other man in the room attempts to surrender to the, the remaining members of The D&D Bandits whose crotches did not explode in a shower of sparks at the sudden proximity of hot women attempt to fight the HAWT MAMAS away from their loot.

3:15 PM – As the two groups battle it out for the fate of the convention-goers, the GOP shows up and joins the fray, calling the Bandits “depraved barely-closeted homosexual freaks” and the MAMAS “uppity women who need to get back in the kitchen.”  In an amusing bit of irony, House Minority Whip Eric Cantor of Kentucky was whipped by a HAWT MAMA.  Later, Cantor would say to reporters that the experience “was not unlike talking with Dick Cheney.”

3:20 PM – SWAT team shows up.  Their first order of business is to destroy what little remains of the school, yelling words to the effect that if anyone is going to destroy Seattle, it’ll be Mayor Greg Nickels.

3:25 PM – The immense battle, now coverin several city blocks, is brought to a brief pause by the sudden appearance of Sarah Palin in a Supergirl costume.  Super-Palin, claiming she could “see the battle from her house in Alaska,” inadvertantly cripples the GOP combatants, whose crotches explode in a shower of sparks at the sudden proximity of her.

3:28 PM – John McCain arrives in a stealth bomber and immediately crashes into the last undamaged building in the neighbourhood.  Though he attempts to blame the crash on “liberal engine-making policies,” witnesses recount that the engine stalled when he tried to fly the plane at 20 miles an hour and had the left blinker on all the way up from Arizona.

3:30 PM – Superman, aided by fellow Krypton survivor Barack Obama, finally puts an end to the melee and repairs the neighbourhood at super-speed.  Most of the criminals/malefactors are taken to jail, though 3 of the HAWT MAMAS are missing and G insists on loading his SUV alone.

4:00 PM – The convention ends, and so does this blog.

VS – 01.27.09

Tears From Gas, Balls Of Brass, Hypocrisy: It’s The RNC! (While I Was Sleeping, Part Three)

Posted in brilliance, economics, politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 15, 2008 by vagabondsaint

I had actually planned to cover the RNC night-by-night in several separate posts, because there was just so much inherent wrongness in the proceedings that it would have taken several blog posts to cover it all.

However, due to time constraints and my own impatience to cover more current events, I’m just going to sum it up day-by-day and move on to all the stuff that’s happened since I started playing catch-up.

Suspension of disbelief is required. . .you won’t believe the things they said and somehow got away with.

Ready, Republicans?  On your mark. . .get set. . .go viciously and hypocritically attack your opponents without proposing solutions to or even discussing the major issues affecting Americans today!

Monday, September First

Monday was a bit of a slow day for the RNC, since Republican leaders were busy either being in Louisiana for Hurrican Gustav or busy talking about Hurricane Gustav on TV.  The poor delegates were left at the XCel Center, clueless and leaderless, because, as one delegate put it, “some people are getting rained on.”  Believe it or not, that was one of the most compassionate statements heard all week from the Convention.

Adding to the distractions from the Convention: Sarah Palin’s possible ethics violation in trying to get her ex-brother-in-law fired and the revelation that her 17-year-old daughter is pregnant.  Does it strike anyone else as slightly hypocritical that the party that brought us abstinence-only education, whether we wanted it or not, is rallying behind someone for whom it failed miserably?

(By the way, in that Troopergate article, mention is made that Palin has “has a proven record championing transparency in government”.  What bullshit.  Even as mayor of Wasilla, she ordered city employees not to talk to the press, our best apparatus for ensuring a transparent government.  As governor of Alaska, she used, and encouraged her cohorts to use, private email accounts for state business, in an attempt to prevent those communications from being subpoenaed.  Think I’m making that up?  Click here.)

The best action was the protests around the convention, where, due the lack of major activity at the convention, police were forced to make their own fun by tear-gassing and pepper-spraying protesters, including Brendan Kiley, a reporter for Seattle weekly news magazine The Stranger.  I’m sure that both his pepper-spray shower and the $1.9 million that St. Paul police spent on tear gas and pepper spray for the RNC were well-deserved.

So, as I said, a quiet first night for the convention. . .well, except for the lobbyist parties.  I’m glad that the lobbyists and delegates listened to McCain’s request and kept things toned down.  Jerks.

And if you’re like me, and wondered why the GOP picked St. Paul for the convention, well, wonder no more:  The Daily Show knows why.

Tuesday, September Second

RNC Theme For The Night:  John McCain, The Complete Sellout He Is and The S.O.B. That Barack Obama Is

The night began with a speech by current president and nominal leader of the Republican Party, George W. Bush (in case you’ve forgotten who he is, as the RNC seems to be trying to do).  I am a bit, um, befuddled by Bush’s speaking at the convention.  After all, isn’t all he what the McCain campaign is rallying about changing from?  When they talk about the bad governing of the past eight years, isn’t he the person who was in charge of it?  So they’re having him speak in favor of McCain?  The only way that this could make sense is if someone came up with a way to blame someone other than Bush and his Republican-controlled Congress (until 2006) for the problems of this country.  But you’d have to be a complete bullshit artist to do that.

Of great interest is this part of Bush’s speech: “When he takes office next January, John will have an outstanding leader at his side. America will have a strong and principled vice president in the Governor of the great state of Alaska, Sarah Palin.”  Ummm, what?  McCain’s going for President here; isn’t he supposed to be the “outstanding leader” of the two?  And I believe Bush when he says that Sarah Palin is an outstanding leader as much a I believed him when he said there were WMDs in Iraq.

We (as in me and the people who read this blog regularly) all know that I love The Daily Show. But they really, really outdid themselves with the comparison of Tuesday’s RNC speakers, Fred “If I’d Won, Sam Waterston Would Have Run Against Me” Thompson and and Joe “Backstabbing Without Even So Much As A Reacharound” Lieberman to cartoon characters Foghorn Leghorn and Droopy Dog, respectfully.  It’s a Moment of Satirical Brilliance, truly.

So what did Senator Leghorn actually say, I said, say?  Well, I just linked you to the speech right there, so you can read it in its entirety, if you want.  As for me, I’m just going to briefly touch on its most prominent lie, with some help from FactCheck.org:

Thompson repeated misleading claims about Obama’s tax program, saying it would bring “one of the largest tax increases in American history.” But as increases go, Obama’s package is hardly a history-maker. It would raise taxes for families with incomes above $250,000. Most people would see a cut.

That Obama is certainly out to fool us!  How dare he propose the majority of Americans take a tax cut while slightly increasing capital gains and dividend taxes and closing the loopholes that allow corporations to get away with paying barely any taxes at all!  He must think we’re stupid, if he thinks we’re just going to let him waltz into the White House and leave us with more money in our pocket!

And Senator Droopy?  Surely, as  former Democrat, he wouldn’t have taken part in the partisan lying and mudslinging, right?

WRONG! Oh, so, so wrong!

Droopy Lieberman (which sounds like something that a man should see a urologist about) took his brush, dipped it in GOP-approved slime, and happily slathered Barack Obama with a healthy coating of crap.

Lieberman said Obama hadn’t “reached across party lines” to accomplish “anything significant,” though Obama has teamed with GOP Sens. Tom Coburn and Richard Lugar to pass laws enhancing government transparency and curtailing the proliferation of nuclear and conventional weapons.

Hey, I thought government transparency was Palin’s department. . .

Lieberman also accused Obama of “voting to cut off funding for our American troops on the battlefield.” But Obama’s only vote against a war-funding bill came after Bush vetoed a version of the bill Obama had supported – and McCain urged the veto.

Sigh.  Oh, Droopy, when you get back into the Senate, the Democrats are gonna treat you like shit, and your own legislative director will quit, and you’ll deserve it. . .but will you even hear it over the jingling pieces of silver in your pocket?

One more thing I want to share:  Karl Rove, Bill O’Reilly, pundit Dick “My First Name Says It All” Morris, McCain’s senior policy adviser Nancy Pfotenhauer, and Sarah Palin herself starring in a gender-card hypocrisy parade, courtesy of The Daily Show.  Seriously, can someone please, for the love of God, tell me why the “real” news sources don’t use clips like these when they actually talk to these people?  Why don’t they make them confront their own hypocrisy? Why?

And where is Dick Cheney?

Wednesday, September Third

RNC Theme For The Night:  Save Us, Sarah Palin, Save Us!

Well, several people spoke that night; all but one were losers in this year’s Republican primaries (or, as Jon Stewart called them, “ghosts of candidates past“).  You’d think that would have made for a much more interesting night than actually happened, wouldn’t you?  You would. . and you’d be wrong!

Former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee, who is, in my eyes, the most personally likeable of the Republican candidates (and yes, I’ve met him personally), delivered a. . .well, a pretty blah speech, really.  It was almost like he didn’t want to give the speech, somehow.  In addition to his speaking woes, he’s also bad at math:

Huckabee told conventioneers and TV viewers that Palin got more votes when she ran for mayor of Wasilla than Biden did running for president. Not even close. The tally: Biden, 79,754, despite withdrawing from the race after the Iowa caucuses. Palin, 909 in her 1999 race, 651 in 1996.

Then there’s Mitt Romney, who I am convinced is actually a robot.  His hair absolutely never moves, his teeth are entirely too perfect, and his voice never changes.  I fully expected him to step outside of the XCel Center, start mowing down protesters with his laser eye-beams, and eventually have to be stopped by Superman.  He scares me.  Moving on.

Next up, former NYC mayor and Republican presidential hopeful “9/11” Rudy “9/11” Giuliani “9/11” gave his “9/11” speech.  If you’ve “911” made it this far “9/11” into this paragraph, then “9/11” you know what a typical “9/11” Giuliani speech is “9/11” like.  However, he managed to restrain “9/11” himself that night, holding out for an entire 13 minutes and 57 seconds into his speech before mentioning 9/11.  (However, I firmly believe his legs, hidden by the podium, were trembling from 9/11 withdrawal.)  He didn’t screw up too badly, though; he did call John McCain a fighter pilot when he, in fact, flew bombers, and distorted Obama’s reaction to the events in Georgia to make them seem different from McCain, when in fact both of them called for the UN Security Council to step in, as did the White House.  As far as speeches for that convention went, it was one of the more honest ones.

And then it was time for Sarah Palin to speak.

She was late for her speech; she’d been busy outside shooting protestors from a helicopter and then dragging their bodies inside to field-dress them, but once she got cleaned up, she came in and gave a speech that would be inspiring, encouraging, heartwarming, and persuasive to anyone with less than three functional brain cells.  To the rest of us, it sounded like this: niceties, joke, joke, lie, lie, joke, lie, joke, family, lie, blatant hypocrisy, partisan attack, lie, denigration of community organizers, lie, partisan attack, attack, lie, praise McCain, joke, lie, lie.  FactCheck.org had a field day with her speech; I’m just going to hit the low notes:

  1. Lied about her flip-flop on the Bridge to Nowhere (again)
  2. Lied about Barack Obama’s record on ethics reform; she dismissed legislation he cosponsored as not being “major law or even reform” though it led to major changes in how lobbyists can legally operate in Washington
  3. Misrepresented Obama’s tax plans as increasing income taxes for everyone when they would actually cut taxes for 81.3% of Americans (but she didn’t misrepresent as badly as McCain, who outright lied)
  4. Lied in saying Obama is against producing more energy; he isn’t and isn’t even against increased drilling, within limits
  5. Mocked Obama for being willing to meet with the heads of “terrorist nations” without preconditions, something that even the Bush Administration is now embracing (presumably they’ve learned that aggressive saber-rattling and pre-emptive invasions only get you hated more)
  6. Lied in saying that Barack Obama is worried that suspected terrorists won’t be read their rights; in fact, he hasn’t said anything to that effect but has supported the rights of detainees to challenge their incarceration in federal court, a decision that the Supreme Court made earlier this year.
  7. Lied about building a gas pipeline in Alaska, which the oil companies opposed due to its prohibitive expense, and used that difference to back her claim of “opposing Big Oil.”  The pipeline she wants built isn’t past even the planning stages yet, and it’s not a certain deal yet.  Meanwhile, the oil companies actually do want a pipeline, and Conoco and BP have started work on plans to compete with hers, but she wanted one big enough for the oil companies that are already there plus room for new companies to come in.  Not so much a matter of disagreement as it is the oil companies wanting to keep their monopoly and Sarah Palin wanting to bring in more companies for more revenue.
  8. Lied about standing up to oil companies.  Other than the disagreement over the pipeline, they’ve been in alignment on every other issue, including offshore drilling and opening up the Arctic National Widlife Reserve for drilling.
  9. Mocked Obama’s experience as a community organizer. . .which, aside from being ignorant as to what community organizers do (they have responsibilities, you know), is also hypocritical, given that one of the themes of the Convention itself was Service, and that is what Obama did as an organizer:  he served his community.

My bullshit meter just exploded.  And now I have outrage fatigue.

Sarah Palin’s speech was of course met with many cheers and howls of applause from the moronic idiotic conservative crowd in attendance, as if they were either too stupid to know that she’d just lied her ass off or so desperate to stay in power that they’d follow her off a cliff.  (Hint:  it’s desperation.)

Which finally, finally, brings us to. . .

Thursday, September Fourth

Theme For The Night:  If You Missed Last Night, You Missed All The Good Stuff

Look, Cindy McCain spoke, then John McCain spoke.  If you want to know what he said, click here.  If you want to know what lies he told, click here.  I can sum it up like this:

  • All the same lies he’s told before.
  • None of the excitement of Sarah Palin’s speech.
  • Some idiot made the mistake of scheduling McCain’s speech on same night as the opening night of the regular football season. . .it’s like they wanted nobody to watch this speech.
  • Reminded us that “POW” is to “McCain” as “9/11” is to “Giuliani.”
  • Railed against “constant partisan rancor.”  Hey, John, did you actually watch the preceding three days of your own convention?  It was full of the partisan rancor and mudslinging you’re talking about in your speech!  If I may make a suggestion:  start getting rid of partisan rancor by taping Palin’s mouth shut.
  • Ended his speech by urging all Americans to “stand up to defend our countries from its enemies.”  Well, Mr. McCain, I’ll be doing exactly that when I vote for Barack Obama, instead of the party that’s ruined America over the past 8 years.

Man, I’m just tired now. . .but that’s the RNC, covered, over, and, thank God, done.

Next time. . .oh, who knows.  I’m like two weeks behind on news right now.  I’ll think of something.

VS – 09.15.08