I did some research, and apparently the terms “sticky bun,” “cinnamon roll,” and “caramel roll” are all interchangeable. But to me, (and this may not be a South Dakota thing but a uniquely Mary-thing), a pastry doesn’t qualify as a sticky bun unless it is dripping in gooey caramel.
Steve’s website is apparently down, and has been for the better part of a month, so it’s unclear where Weldon will live-stream (apart from YouTube, I guess?) but January’s Cave-In is set to go on as scheduled with special guest Lou Ferrigno!
Okay, so here’s the thing: I’ve had a migraine for two days, so I’m playing catch-up with work. Therefore, I don’t have time now to tell you why I think this is so great (besides the obvious). When I have time, I’ll come back later and tell you why the Hulk is special to me, but I just wanted to be sure to let you know that, one way or another, the show is going on.
I only have one friend who ever gives me Muppet-related presents: my best friend Julie (the newlywed), who gave me my Wembley Funko Pop for my birthday last year (by which I mean 2018 because I still haven’t made the mental adjustment). For Christmas 2019, she gave me the Jim Henson Funko Pop holding Kermit.
Hi, all! Happy New Year. Sorry I’ve been a bit quiet lately. Life is crazy. I’ve got a lot to say, and a lot of it is kind of cranky, and I don’t know when I will have time to get it all out of my system.
But in the meantime, I wanted to start off with something positive, and I’ve got something cool to show you. Remember last year when I went to OCon and I met Steve in the midst of his CF3 Podcast interview, and they recorded part of it? Well, they put that episode up on YouTube:
And because it is on YouTube, I can link specifically to certain parts of it, so here’s the start of Steve’s interview, and then about 30-35 seconds after that you can hear me getting all nervous and giggly. And then here’s the part where they ask him specifically about The Dark Crystal.
I want to say a thank you to Ethan, aka Captain Vegetable, who got in contact with me to tell me that this was on YouTube. I actually knew it already because I follow CF3 on Twitter, but I’m always, ALWAYS grateful for tips, so thank you so much for that.
Episode 5 of Cave-In went up on YouTube yesterday:
At the risk of sounding a bit pathetic, I’ve been watching it almost nonstop ever since. I don’t want to say that I’m enamored with the sound of my own voice (it may be true; I just don’t want to say it), but given the choice, I would much rather listen to myself than watch myself.
Boy, did I discover an unexpected Christmas gift today! I was on YouTube, and one of the videos recommended to me was a Q&A from GalaxyCon Louisville back in November featuring Steve Whitmire and Kirk Thatcher:
It’s so great and entertaining and informative just in general, but here is what I particularly like about it:
Okay, so you want to know how much of a nerd I am? I was so fixated on the fact that the Mountain Time Zone shading in South Dakota doesn’t extend far enough east that at first I didn’t even notice that some of the states are labeled with the entirely wrong name, including some that don’t actually exist.
Oh, that Weldon! Wreaking mayhem by making up fake state names!🤣
There hasn’t been an announcement on Instagram regarding the next Cave-In, but Weldon did leave a message on Discord saying that it would be on 12/27 at 12:27 A.M. “Do the math,” he added, which makes me wonder if he knows that math is my personal kryptonite.
I think what that means, if I understand correctly, is if you live in the Central time zone like I do, it’s going to be at 11:27 P.M. on 12/26. But I make no guarantees that that is correct.
(Although I’m only finishing and publishing this now, I started drafting it well before the sad tidings of Caroll Spinney’s death. So if it seems inappropriately light-hearted in tone, that’s why.)
George Takei’s Q&A finished at about 1:00, and my brother Michael suggested that we find something to eat (“forage for food” were his exact words). I had been just about to make the same suggestion.
Like the Mid-America Center where OCon had been held, the Minneapolis Convention Center doesn’t allow outside food. Since it was cold and snowy, and since we had parked several blocks away, and since I didn’t have an extra $5 to check my coat again, there was nothing for it but to purchase overpriced lunch items from one of the several concession stands spread throughout the center. In addition to his wrap, Michael purchased a cookie and offered me half, and it reminded me of my favorite Cookie Monster sketch on Sesame Street:
After we finished eating lunch, Michael wanted to look around the vendors’ area, so we did, and I found that the vendors, though equally polite, weren’t as aggressive as they had been at OCon, meaning that we could pause by their tables without having to listen to pitches, which was a relief.
As we were walking around, we ran into three people that Michael knows in short succession. The first was a guy named Bruce (I think) who made a joke about Michael “dragging” me along to GalaxyCon, or words to that effect. I suppose I should have been annoyed by the implication that “gurls” don’t like nerdy stuff, but I just laughed and informed him, truthfully, that coming to GalaxyCon had been my idea in the first place. Michael tried to say that I was in a fandom, but at first he said that I had a fandom, and I wondered if that might actually be true from a certain point of view. I ultimately decided that it would be most accurate to say that I am in a fandom and within that fandom, I have a following. (And thanks for that, by the way!)
I’m sorry that I haven’t finished my account of GalaxyCon Minneapolis. Things are crazy, particularly with the Thanksgiving holiday. But to tide you over, I found this brief interview that happened there. I think this occurred on Saturday, the day before I attended.
The Kermit that’s there on the table is a photo puppet that they used for photo ops and also to draw attention to the table. When I was there, someone asked Steve if it was the “real” Kermit, and he said no, it was a photo puppet that was a lot smaller.
I didn’t notice the photo puppet’s arms shaking so much while I was there, but boy, they sure do shake a lot on this video. By the way, the display rack (or whatever you would call it) holds the puppet up but doesn’t secure it in place, so it tended to fall over whenever anybody tried to move it.
It’s always fun to look at something like this and say, “Hey, I was there!” even though in this case I wasn’t there on the actual day.
Tonight is a new episode of Cave-In, and I’m so excited I decided to make up a song parody about it:
This is Steve’s Q&A from GalaxyCon Minneapolis, but I wasn’t there that day so I only saw it for the first time yesterday.
On November 10th, I attended GalaxyCon Minneapolis and met up with Steve again. The only reason I was able to do that is because of my brother Michael. He lives in Minneapolis and allowed me to stay with him while I was in town. If I had had to pay the price of admission plus accommodations, I would never have been able to go. I also would have paid for parking because I wouldn’t have known there was another option.
When I initially planned to go to GalaxyCon, I thought that I would simply ask Michael if I could stay with him while I was in town. But then I thought about it, and I realized that although he’s not obsessive about Muppets the way I am, he still likes them. Not only that, but he’s an enormous Star Trek fan, and there were a bunch of Star Trek actors appearing. So I thought he might enjoy coming along, and that it might be more fun if he was there, so I invited him, and I was right on both counts. Not only that, but I don’t think I would have even made it into the exhibition hall to see Steve if Michael hadn’t been there to interpret the maps of the convention center for me and lead me in the right direction.
My point is that I have Michael to thank for the entire GalaxyCon experience, and if you enjoy what I have to say about it, then you owe him your gratitude as well. (If you don’t enjoy it, well, then leave him out of it because he had nothing to do with that.)
In case you missed it, last weekend I attended GalaxyCon Minneapolis and had another conversation with Steve. It was sort of a two-part conversation, actually, because I talked to him in the morning and then again in the afternoon. Thus, I thought I would write about it in two blog posts as well.
I’m in the process of writing those now, and the first part, detailing our conversation of the morning, is nearing completion. However, the thought occurred to me that I might not be able to publish the second part, detailing our conversation of the afternoon, until after the next episode of Cave-In occurs. Since our conversation of the afternoon included intel on what is coming in future episodes, I thought I would provide a brief preview now.
Today is the 50th anniversary of Sesame Street! HBO, where it airs primarily now (and has for several years), put together a video in which an interviewer asks the Sesame Street Muppets about their favorite memories. It’s quite cute and clever:
Couple of things I noticed about it:
- Elmo does not appear in this video at all. And granted, I’m a grumpy Gen X-er who doesn’t have much use for Elmo in the first place, but I find that I didn’t miss him in the slightest or even notice his absence at first.
- There are only three characters in this video still performed by their original puppeteers: Abby, Rudy, and Rosita. That’s just an observation, not a value judgment of any kind.
- Whatever my mixed feelings may be about Peter Linz playing Ernie, I have to say that whoever’s writing Bert and Ernie’s banter nowadays is spot-on. Absolutely brilliant and perfect.
- High definition hasn’t done Big Bird any favors in one important respect. The monofilament that connects his arms used to be all but invisible, but now it’s plain as day. It’s a shame, because it makes Big Bird seem slightly less magical as a result.
- However, I love that they revisited the idea of Big Bird being an artist.
- At first it seemed too easy to have Abby’s favorite Sesame Street memory be the day she moved there, but the payoff was worth it.
- Oscar’s interactions with Slimey have always been one of my favorite things about Sesame Street.
- I don’t watch Sesame Street regularly, so I haven’t seen much with Rudy, but from what I have seen of him, I like him very much.
- I love that some of the Muppets are wearing microphones during their interviews. That’s one of my favorite Muppet gags ever.
At first I wondered why Steve didn’t post his “Stranger Things” parody online before the episode in which it premiered. Apparently, it was so that Weldon could have a conversation with some of the young actors from the show itself in conjunction with the parody.
I don’t watch the show because I don’t have Netflix, so I don’t know anything about the kids, but they seem perfectly pleasant, and it’s really cool to see Weldon sharing the screen with the people that he’s interacting with.
Like I said, I don’t watch the show, so what I know about it, I’ve learned through cultural osmosis. But I think “Stronger Thongs” is really good wordplay. That could have been the whole parody for me, and I would have been satisfied. But then the Demi-gorgonzola shows up, which is not only good wordplay but a really cool-ass puppet to boot.
Anyway, apparently today is “#StrangerThingsDay,” so I thought I would post this since I’ve been meaning to do so anyway.
Oh, one thing I forgot to mention is that the text at the end doesn’t match what Weldon is actually saying, which is hilarious. That gives everyone an idea of what it’s like to edit speech recognition documents, so thanks for that, Weldon!