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So. It’s been a while since this poor little blog has been updated. A short break turned into a year and a half.

Ooops. My bad.

It isn’t as though I’ve had nothing to blog about, I just let it slide. You know what they say about the conservation of momentum. If you don’t know, take physics 101.

Anyway, a lot has changed since my last foray into the blogoshere. I’m in my second year of grad school at my ol’ alma mater Wheaton studying the History of Christianity. Why, you ask? Because. Not the greatest answer, but I’m not really in the mood to elaborate at the moment. I have my reasons for sinking a significant amount of time, money, and aggravation into this endeavor and I’m sure that I’ll relay them at some point, but not now. On the book front, Mercator number two is written and sitting in editing limbo with a release date yet to be determined. I’d say it’s coming soon, however I’ve been saying that for more than a year now so I’ll just say it’s coming sometime and I think it’s better than the first. But don’t take my word for it. πŸ™‚

Better get back to the Reformation…

In the mean time, a little something awesome from my childhood.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-FD1K8OvVCs (Stupid thing doesn’t want to embed. It’s a Reading Rainbow remix which is pretty awesome.)

Sooo. I’m not coming through on my blogging like I should. What’s new? Three posts one week, one the next. At least I’m consistently inconsistant.

Do I have an excuse? Naw I don’t believe in those. It just slipped my mind. I’ve had other things to distract me. Like finishing the second book of Mercator. (It’s not done by the way. Close but not quite.) It’s really getting to the good part now. Too bad I won’t get to finish it for a couple of weeks. You see, I have this thing in Pennsylvania that I’m going to be at with 10,000+ of my nerd brethren.

I’m going to Pennsic, baby.

Now, most of you mundanes probably don’t have a clue what that means. Well listen up because I’m about to blow your little minds with sheer awesome.

So, Pennsic is the biggest SCA war in the world.

“And I should care, why?” you ask.

Imma just gon’ put this here:

This is what I’m doing next week. How about you?

To get ready I had to polish my ridiculously rusty helmet. (Which I riveted myself…)

And embroider the hems of my new dress. (Only in the SCA do I infrequently wear a dress. Because they’re super comfy.)

This is going to rock.

At this very moment the Amorphophallus titanium (Wikipedia) at the university of Illinois is beginning to bloom for the first time in 100 years. That’s right, this plant is older than you great grandfather and is named after the dead. I’ve heard it called the Corpse Flower because it smells like rotting flesh. Check it out! The flowers only last a couple of days. LINK TO LIVE WEB CAM. OOOoooo.

And in the other corner a iphone video taken from the inside of a dude’s guitar. Check out how each string wave form has a different rate and vibration that corresponds to the note.

Ooh science? or MAD science?

That was the sound of my girlish excitement escaping in the form of an imitated balloon squeal.

If you like either or both of these Great Brits then you have got to watch the interview. You Have Got To.

Just in case you’re left in the dark… *le gasp!* … I don’t know you, heathen.

My favorite Gaiman book? Stardust

My favorite Ferguson Sketch? This one. (skip to 1:06 to see why)

Unless you’ve been living on Io (one of Jupiter’s 16 moons) since 2003, pirates are super cool right now. At least they have been ever since Johnny Depp donned on a wig and swagger (I like this word right now) and climbed aboard ship. As freakishly awesome as Jack Sparrow is, my first pirate love was Guybrush Threepwood. And as awesome as the Pirates of the Caribbean movies are, there is another pirate movie I’d rather spend my gold on.

Muppet Treasure Island is in my opinion the best pirate movie ever made.

Why?

Well, I’m very glad you ask.

First we start with an awesome theme song. Possibly one of the pirate songs ever produced for film. It’s right up there with Yo Ho.

As long as we’re on the subject of songs, all the songs are pretty awesome, but none more hilariously amazing than Cabin Fever.
I feel like this sometimes. πŸ˜›

And in case anyone noticed, Hanz Zimmer wrote the score for Muppet Treasure Island some 7 years before he penned the score for Pirates of the Caribbean. Sweet, huh?

But what about star power? How could its cast compare to Johnny Depp, Orlando Bloom, and Kiera Knightly? I’m pretty sure the Muppets alone are not only bigger stars, they’ll still be around when Orlando Bloom is back in diapers. But if it’s human star power you need, how about Tim Curry, Billy Connolly, and Jennifer Saunders? What? Not convinced you say. Their names might not be as recognizable, but their talent surely is. Then by all means check out these clips.

Tim Curry – Awesome, and that’s all I have to say about that. If you don’t know Curry, your life could use some spice. (Lame pun)

Billy Connolly – Couldn’t find the death scene πŸ™ But this scene will still make your sides hurt … from laughter.

Jennifer Saunders – One of my favorite comedians at the top of her game. Brilliantly funny.

Ok. Ok enough with all the video posts.

The point is, I love this movie. Everyone I know who has seen this movie loves it. Growing up on Seseme Street and Muppet Babies, I can’t help but love those furry puppets. Gonzo was my man, just like he’s Jim Hawkins’ man… er… whatever. Muppet Treasure Island is a pirate romp you can show to any kid without having to worry about there really being any of the downsides to piracy. If you haven’t laughed until tears seep out of your eyes by ten minutes in, there must be something wrong with you. I’ve got nothing against Pirates of the Caribbean movies, I’m a fan, but I only need to see those once, I’ll watch Muppet Treasure Island a hundred times. In my opinion that’s the mark of a great movie.

Maybe Muppets aren’t your thing. But if you like funny, and you like Pirates, you’ll loooove Muppet treasure island.

 

I was saving all of these for the new blog I’m working on for the Mercator Mapmaker website, but I’m getting tiered of all the open tabs in my browser. I have a tendency to keep “important” webpages in open tabs for months at a time, time for a bit of clean up, and as a bonus my boring little blog gets new content! Yay!

First we have a fantastic BBC Series The Beauty of Maps. It’s brilliant, check it out and see for your self the awesome power and beauty of maps!

Here are the rest of the episodes conveniently organized on a single webpage over at visualnews.com

Next is a little time-lapse video of making a map of the London Underground out of string. As with nearly everything on Vimeo, it’s beautiful and creative. Perhaps I’ll play with the idea myself someday mapping the movements of all my characters across Threa.

String map from fsm vpggru on Vimeo.

And finally a couple of super cool posters. Words and maps together at last…er…again! Thanks to Bookshelves of Doom for this one!

You can buy them here along with other cool literary themed posters.

Well, that’s it for now. I’m still working on all that video from Mount Ayr and StarFest, my computer is getting old and cantankerous and my patience is limited. Hopefully I can wrangle it into spitting out what I want soon. πŸ™‚