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He Is a Master Baiter October 8, 2012

Posted by J. in Genius.
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Geoduck wants to know which is worse: My Little Pony or the Star Wars remastered special editions.

Geoduck is also baiting me.

I said I wouldn’t discuss My Little Pony, and yet, here we are. He’s waiting to see if I’ll take the bait. And he sweetened it by including Star Wars in the question. He’s dangling a big old worm out there for me.

Yeah, buddy. I see what you did there. I AM SO ONTO YOU.

But then last week I came out of the closet as a writer and talked about religion as well, so what the fuck. In for a penny, in for a pound, as they say. What do I think is the greater abomination?

Well, the truth is, I don’t dislike the ponies much more than I dislike any other children’s programming. Now, I know what you’re thinking.

No, I haven’t gone over to the Dark Side. I see My Little Pony for what it is. It’s a children’s cartoon that puts stuff in that appeals to grownups. Bugs Bunny did it famously. Spongebob does it. The Animaniacs is another one that brought it to new heights.

That video clip right there? It’s a joke about fudge-knuckling a pop star. And I really should own the collector’s edition of all the Animaniacs ever made because that show was fucking awesome. I watched it as an adult all the time. If you say to me, “Are you pondering what I’m pondering?” I will come back with a reply.

But essentially, what makes a cartoon watchable as an adult is the annoyance factor. I have three kids and have spent a lot of time over the last 12 years listening to and watching children’s programming. There are shows I can hear or see that don’t bother me. Super Why is on right now and I barely notice it in the background. They’re asking questions and every now and again I can hear Dave play along and shout out the letters they’re asking for.

Now, you put the Fairly Oddparents on in the next room and my hackles go up. That is a collection of the most annoying voices on television, hands down. I hear Timmy Turner start to speak and it’s like nails on a chalkboard. I’m the same way with Dora the Explorer. WHY IS THAT CHILD ALWAYS SHOUTING AT ME? Kick it back a notch, chica. We’re not deaf. Not all of us.

The ponies has the same effect. Honestly, with the sound turned off, I don’t get stabby. It’s ponies. Weird-ass looking ponies, but I’ve seen worse. It’s the SOUND, man. I can’t take the voices, or the music. And if my kids wanted to watch it, if they kept the sound down, I don’t care. They’re children.

I do not understand Bronies.

I can’t understand how a grown person could subject themselves to that mindless crap for hours on end, on purpose. I guess I just don’t find it witty or clever, or the songs particularly engaging. And the voices. *shudders* Just awful.

Then again, my kids have discovered reruns of Full House and I’ve never understood the appeal of that show either but it ran for-fucking-ever. It’s painfully unfunny.

But I digress.


As usual.

Is My Little Pony a greater abomination than the remastered Star Wars special editions?

Oh, George Lucas. Let me tell you what I told a friend of mine years ago as he planned to do a back flip off of a 6 foot set piece: just because you can do something doesn’t mean you should.

I understand his frustration, honestly. It’s well-documented that when George made the original Star Wars he was limited by budget and technological constraints, and he always felt he could have done it better if he hadn’t had those kind of imposed limits on his creativity. I mean, I can see that. It sucks to have to work on the cheap, or to have an idea in your head and not be able to realize it because the way to make it happen hasn’t been invented yet.

Not for nothing, but those limits are what pushed him to and other filmmakers like him to grow and invent and create and take movie making places it had only imagined. And that is amazing.

But part of the charm of the original Star Wars in its original format was that there was a bit of cheesiness about it. It was reminiscent of the old Saturday afternoon movie serials. The effects were simple, but it let the story shine through. And as confined as he felt he was, he still managed to make a movie that was like nothing we’d ever seen. There’s a reason it was the top-grossing movie of all time for so long. Simply put, it was amazing.

When I watch Star Wars, Episode IV, A New Hope, I want to watch it in the original format.

But there are things I like about the enhanced version. Some of the effects, like the Death Star explosion are much cooler now. And I kind of like Mos Eisley fleshed out a bit. And honestly, I really prefer the ending of Return of the Jedi where they show the celebrations on all the distant worlds of the Empire with new music that’s not that stupid Ewok song. Though I’m not sure why Hayden Christiensen shows up at the end.  I mean, we see Old Yoda and Old Obi-Wan, but young Anakin.  Why? Old Anakin makes more sense. Seems like a cheap tie-in to the prequels.

Which, I hate to say it, sucked. The prequels were just bad movies. EXCEPT. Except for the last ten or so minutes of the third one, when Anakin becomes Darth Vader and he gets his helmet and you see the panic in his eyes. And seeing Luke and Leia go to their separate families and destinies. I got goosebumps. The rest of that horrid lead-up was worth it to get to that precious, well-done bit of screen time.

Goosebumps, man.

I like how they torture him when they’re getting him in his Vader suit. I mean, they can make a robot man, but they hadn’t invented the spinal block or even a good sedative? God is in the details, George. And how did he go from being average Haydn height to 7 feet tall in the original movies? And why?


Curiously enough, back in the day, I was obsessed by Star Wars. I can quote every line of dialogue from A New Hope verbatim, and most of the second two. I was the Star Wars equivalent of a Brony, I guess. I still am. I just watched YouTube clips of Star Wars all morning while I was writing this.

Of course, ponies are stupid and Star Wars kicks ass, even if George Lucas fucked around with it too much.

So I guess to answer Geoduck’s master baiting question, I think My Little Pony is the greater abomination, because at the end of the day, I have to force myself to watch even a clip of those god-forsaken ponies, but I will sit here and watch clips of both the original and remastered Star Wars trilogy all day if given a chance. And since the girls have gone to the fair today and it’s just me and Dave, and I have a lot of knitting to do, I might do just that.

Then again, I’m thinking it’s a good day to pop in the original letterbox version and let it wash over me.

Because movies formatted to fit a TV screen are an abomination. Letterbox format for life, man.


WIP Wednesday: Release the Kraken September 26, 2012

Posted by J. in Sticks and String.
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I know what you’re thinking: what happened to the green sweater? Answer: it’s been shelved for awhile. It’s too late in the year for a summer sweater now, so I’ll pick it up again this winter and hopefully have it ready for Spring. Custom work has been taking up most of my time and I’m not even really into holiday knitting yet.

Currently on the needles is a squid hat. Or an octopus. Perhaps a kraken. The jury is still out. My friend Mary of Dead Pony Hat fame has commissioned another chapeau for herself, this one of a squid. Or an octopus. Could be Admiral Ackbar.

The eye will be knit as well and stitched on, and if you see the bottom of the hood–the part touching the desk–that’s where the scarf will attach. The scarf will be tentacles, of course. I’ll begin casting on for that today. I’m trying to decide between octopus and squid. I’m leaning towards octopus at this point.

Or Admiral Ackbar. IT’S A TRAP.

Mary’s also got me working on a couple of other things, but because they’re secret squirrel gifties, they shan’t be discussed.

But we can talk about the ponies.

I have just finished and mailed the worst pony yet. Worse than Inverted Pony.  Did I show you that? I don’t think I did…

I said, “An inside-out rectally inverted pony is impossible, both anatomically and in the context of the medium.” I was WRONG.

My friend Bill–not St. Joseph Bill, a different, sicker, more twisted Bill–said he wanted to see a pony that had had its head pulled out of its ass.

I said it couldn’t be done.

He said, “Just DO IT.”

I sighed and got my hook out but I was dubious that it would work. I was three-quarters of the way through it still doubting it was going to work. Then, I needle felted the inside of the eyes, and I knew it was going to work. And it was going to be the grossest thing I’d ever created.

You ever needle-felted an optic nerve? I have.

And it was the grossest thing. Until someone said the words “centipede pony” and I heard a sound in my head like a needle being pulled off an LP.

If you’re not familiar with the movie The Human Centipede, I was going to say Google it, but then I realized if those words don’t bring a mental image to mind, you’re lucky. What has been seen cannot be unseen. You can follow the link if you want a visual of what I was compelled to make, but for the faint of heart (and how did you sneak in here if you’re faint of heart?) know that it’s a horror movie in which three people get surgically joined rectum to mouth.

I know. I told you not to look.

And the friend of mine who bought the original Decapitated Pony placed her order for Centipede Pony.

Now feeeeeeeeeeed her…

I wish I could say I don’t feel good about this, but this tickled me pink to make. It has been suggested that I could use a bit of therapy if creating such truly disgusting things is fun for me, but I say PFFFFFFTTTTT. It’s cheaper than therapy.

Oh, and I finished the snowflake mittens I was showing off last week.

Wool of the Andes in Coal and Wool of the Andes Tonal in Gypsy, my own pattern.

Okay, that’s all that’s cooking and hooking over here this week. Now, I must return to my creature of the deep hood/scarf hat thing. Octopus? Squid? Cthulhu?

I probably should decide pretty soon…

My Own Commercial! September 4, 2012

Posted by J. in Genius, Other People's Genius, Sticks and String.
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*sings* “Cause you got to have frieeeee–ends…”

My friend Ann made this for me. She was burning DVD’s of My Little Pony episodes for a mutual friend of ours and decided on a whim to make a commercial for my shop and include it on the discs.

I love having friends who are evil geniuses. This made my ENTIRE day. Ann, you are a rock star. And you totes get a *brohoof* for this. I’m blown away. ENJOY THIS! It’s awesome!

The Only Good Pony Is A Dead Pony August 29, 2012

Posted by J. in Genius, Sticks and String.
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I like to think of myself as a tolerant person. Live and let live, I always say. I have friends of many races and nationalities. I name as my friends confessors of every creed and keepers of every covenant you can imagine. But never, in my wildest imagination, did I think I’d live to see the day when I found my tolerance tested by a Brony.

For the uninitiated, a Brony is a grown man who likes My Little Pony. No…scratch that. He doesn’t like My Little Pony. He LOOOOOOOOOVES My Little Pony. His female counterpart is the Pegasister, and you’ll know if you have stumbled across one by their use of the words “cutie mark” in casual conversation. They may offer you a “brohoof”.

Whatever you do, don’t accept it.

They want to make you one of them.

We simply must resist. The ponies, you see, are evil and must die.

One day, I was cutie-marked a step too far. I’d see one too many pastel ponies come across my computer monitor and I admit it: I snapped under the torture. I had been forced to endure all the profile pictures and embedded videos, and I finally decided enough was enough. I would not give into my captors. I might have to see their insipid, smiling pony faces, but I don’t have to take it.


I have a crochet hook and a twisted sense of humor, and I set to work decimating the ponies one by one. The first to die was Pink Pony. She lost her head.

And with a decapitated pink pony, the Etsy shop Four Lights was born.

I have to admit, killing her felt good. Real good. Like leave-your-hands-shaking good. But not as good as seeing her sell almost as soon as I had her listed. I was not alone! Others like me needed to see ponies meet their doom! So I killed another one.

Click the picture to join the resistance and take the dopey disemboweled pony home with you.

God, it felt so good. Seeing the crocheted entrails spilling out on the ground. Sweet mother of Picard, it was good.  Too good, almost.

A friend took me aside. “Poops,” he said. “There are four lights.”

“I know, man. Always.”

“You know what I’d like to see?”

“What’s that?”

“I’d like to see one get her face eaten off by a cat.”

“Which one?” He smiled at me.

“The rainbow one,” we said in unison.

Click the picture to make her your own.

The resistance caught on. More requests. More ponies destined to die. The blood lust was going to my head and I hooked faster and faster, honing my skills as more ponies fell before me.

The picture takes you to her final resting place. Click it. You know you want to.

“Oh, my God. She’s just a baby.” The Bronies and Pegasisters were horrified. But I don’t see age. I don’t see color. I don’t see cutie marks. I see pure evil and I crush it like you would a nest of baby rats.

But not that horrified. I asked my small cadre, my band of resistance fighters how the next pony should die, and from the crowd, I heard, “Dismembered with a chainsaw.”

It was a Pegasister. I had to oblige.

The latest pony to join my shop. Click the picture to make all his parts your own.

I admit that the killing spree has gone to my head. I’ve ordered more yarn and roving. My favorite Brony friend wants to see a purple pony die in a pool of vomit from alcohol poisoning, and another member of the resistance force has come up with a pony whose death is so diabolical I can’t even begin to describe it.

Keep coming back. Keep fighting the good fight. Because the only good pony is a dead pony.