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Spring Vacation 

I’ve been playing hostess to guests since last Thursday.  Will get back to regular scheduled programming soon.  Hope your holiday was a good one.

Interlude LII: Sign Me

Michelle Forbes and Richard Armitage appear to promote “Berlin Station” during the AOL BUILD Series at AOL HQ in New York City, New York on October 10, 2016.

I’ve been pulling blanks on topics here forcing me to dive into my bag of goodies because I know what you come here for.  Ah, here is one.  I think this photo showcases well his physique at this angle. 

In the meantime, feel free to suggest topics for me in the comments.  I’m desperate here.

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Interlude LI: Mr. Rogers

Richard Armitage rocking a Mr. Rogers look. Wouldn’t have minded staying in his neighborhood.

So I drank a margarita made with little alcohol (or so I requested) and it still knocked me on my ass.  I need to crawl to bed.  In the meantime, I’ll leave one of my favorite pictures of Mr. Rogers – I mean Richard Armitage.

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Fellow bloggers Herba, Servetus, Perry, and Guylty have been posting about today through the history of their blogs.  (Let’s pretend I’m not a day late.)  So I took a look in my archives and discovered I’m not a good April blogger.  In some years I didn’t blog at all following meager posts in March.  I think the strain of stoically marking off another birthday in April contributed to the silence.  The years also reflect the trajectory of my fangurling, slowly starting out, steadily building to a flurry of writing, then leveling off to an intermittent trickle.  Such has been my life in any fandom.

2011 oversaw a steady increase in posts.  April 9th was a Saturday which meant the usual Surreal Saturday posts dedicated to the weird, the usual and the downright scary.  That day I showcased the parody group Lonely Island and their dance video The Creep.

2012 was my heyday in fandom with posts galore.  Oddly, April 9th showed a blank spot on that date between The Four Tops singing Reach Out on Serene Sunday feature and a popular Foolish Friday entry My Gal Marian.

2013 showed my fascination starting to ebb with nothing written in April between some March and May posts.  2014 to 2016 had very few posts with due to ongoing personal issues coming to the forefront.   Had I bottomed out?  I don’t know.  But I continue to post. 

Confessions of a Watcher marches on.

 

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Nothing can get as strange and weird as Japanese media.  If you want to take sexism to the wall, check the Japanese media. If you want a weird sexist game, yeah, check out Japanese media.

Here is a real game where you can dash and dodge in high speed battles – with panties.

I have no words.

 

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Richard Armitage getting the gauzy treatment.

Hello class.  Hope your week has treated you well.  Me, I was alternately placid and annoyed but that a topic for another.   Today is all about the objectification.  Let’s hit it.

Here is Richard Armitage news program picture from a 2014 interview circuit.   This is a low resolution photo causing artifacts and blurring but the effect reminds me of a soft focus camera setting. The gauzy light makes him appear to have discovered the fountain of youth.  Notice the return of soft radiant youthfulness, the smooth skin and perfect hair curling at the perfect longer length.  (Personally, this is the perfect style for him at this age.  It softens his angular features, balances the high forehead, and covers the elven ears.)    Even the early stubble looks touchable.  While I’m not a fan of dark shirts other than black, the brown does complement his hair.  Overall, it’s a pretty damn good bad picture.  Ah, the misty water colored memories of the way he was.  Sigh.

What do you think?  Do you prefer the old RA or the newer RA?

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Recap Thursday: Fetish

Because a certain segment of the fandom really enjoys The Beard, I wrote this story for the The Man in June 2013.  This was quite the stretch for me since I’m in the Anti-Beard Brigade.  Enjoy.

*****

The man knew it was wrong the moment he saw the three women, but he couldn’t help it.  He’d spotted them as he left the studio, tired from a long day on the set.  From the sudden intense whispering and shy smiles his way, he knew they were fans.  Ordinarily, he felt pleased and a little gratified to meet fans, making small talk, scrawling autographs and posing for pictures.  But this promised something more – naughty. A thrill of anticipation rushed through him as he approached.

He scanned their faces, judging who could be The One.  The slight blonde, standing behind the two older women, didn’t seem a likely prospect.  She smiled and eyed him in a polite detached manner, lacking the “fan” aura.   She likely accompanied her friends to the studio just to observe.  The youngest of the trio looked ready to burst with excitement, shoulders scrunched in tension, hands clasped in front of her tightly, and the widest smile he’d ever seen.  He would have been able to see her shining eyes but she could barely look him in the eye. No, she wasn’t “it.”

As he turned to the oldest of the trio, his heart sped up.  The tall brunette stood nearly eye to eye with him. She regarded him in a more subdued fashion with a crooked uncertain grin and cocked head.  The eyes gave her away: they darted from his and away. Ordinarily, he’d think she was stealing sneaky glimpses of his mouth, but he knew that wasn’t it.  It was the BEARD.

He reached up reflexively to touch it.  This was the beard’s second stretch for his character.  After four weeks, it had grown in but hadn’t reached it’s full potential.  Commentators on Alia’s blog called it “the baby beard.”  He smirked.  When the itchiness of the growth subsided, he quite liked the surprising silkiness of it.  He also liked another thing: the fans touching it.  That discovery occurred when a fan had asked to touch it on a dare.  He’d posed in amusement for the photo but had been secretly shocked by one thing; the frisson of tension he’d felt the second her fingers stroked his face.  It was as if another part of himself had leaned forward figuratively to luxuriate in her touch.  It had felt so – sensual.  He hadn’t regarded himself as a particular tactile person in this touchy-feely business, so he’d been caught out by the fleeting intense surge of pleasure.  Friends did not produce the same effect; the touch of a fan seemed somehow thrilling and – forbidden, yes, deliciously forbidden.

His hand’s motion quickly drew her eyes.  Her top lip sucked at the bottom.   Surely news of the earlier fan had gotten out; she wanted to touch his beard too.  Her eyes darted back to his questioningly.  His smile widened as that naughty part of him tempted her by leaning forward.  She took the bait.

“Would you like to?” He leaned tantalizingly close, marveling how he could invade her personal space like this.  Who was he and what was he doing?

“May I?”  She didn’t seem to mind.

Her hand seemed to move in slow motion as it rose from her side. The anticipation stretched as she came closer and closer and then – just the barest, lightest touch. His eyes fluttered closed as her fingers left a trail of subtle sensation across his cheek and along the jawline.  He slowly exhaled breath he’d not realized he’d been holding and he shuddered lightly.  Delicious.  Simply delicious. The hand fell away suddenly.  His eyes opened.  Good grief, had she noticed?  She smiled, thanked him, and glanced in amazement at her friends.  No, she’d probably remembered she’d been stroking the beard of a stranger.  She’d been too enthralled in her own experience do notice his.   He collected himself and posed for the group photo, pretty sure that his eyes possessed a bit more twinkle.  He sent them off with a nod and smile.

He turned away, heading for his bike. Tonight, he would relive the moment over and over.  Maybe Alia would write a post about it – beard stroking by strangers as pleasure.  He reached the bike and stopped in his tracks.  Good grief. What was fandom doing to him?

He had a fetish.

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I haven’t figured out how to embed Keke Palmer’s dumb tweet and Richard Armitage’s dumber retweet of it into my blog.  But then I’m too annoyed to work on it.  If you really want to see it, look here and here.   Here’s my imaginary message to his retweet:

Dear Rich,

What in the hell is wrong with you?  I know defenders will say “but he’s British!” and therefore doesn’t know but you’ve been in this country long enough.  Keke Palmer might think she’s hip and edgy using the N word but being black doesn’t make it any more acceptable.  It’s a derogatory term and no supposed “re-appropriating” of the word makes it any more palatable no matter the spelling.  It’s still a derogatory racist slave epithet and will always be one.  This is an ongoing big bone of contention in the African American community.  Personally I think it’s a hallmark of colossal ignorance.

And you, my white friend, don’t get to use it, retweet it or anything else.  Don’t add to the confusion and perpetuate the ignorance.

No Love,

Judiang

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Still recovering from my birthday festivities (I’m old!) but I wanted to say thank you all so much for the good wishes. They are really appreciated.

I know what you guys come here for so here’s a little something for your efforts.

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My Name is Geek

Pong, the first video game I ever saw. It was captivating.

Yes, I’m a geek from way back.  It started with a fascination of all things electronic beginning with my oldest brother’s reel to reel tape recorder. (Yes, I’m really dating myself.)   We all crowded around the first cassette tape deck recording silly voices and bad but funny singing.  No more bulky unspooling reels.

The golden age of arcades began.  It’s funny now but Pong was captivating back in the day.  Games changed to blazing color with the advent of color televisions.  Pac-Man debuted in 1980.  Video games entered its first golden age.  Soon I heard about the astonishing idea of playing games on monitors – at home instead of arcades! 

With breakthroughs in technology, these games entered my home and rested on a table next to a small television that we bought just for gaming.  Two televisions in the house!  That was incredible.  I could now play Bowling and Golf on a relatively compact home console (we sadly opted for Intellivision instead of Atari 2600 in the gaming wars.  However we chose VHS over Betamax in the videotape format war, so we scored there.)   Gaming continued to evolve as I grew up and away from it.  Life got in the way. 

Legend of Zelda. This was state of the art console gaming circa 1990.

Around 1991, my older brother introduced me to a new home console, the Nintendo NES and an amazing new game, The Legend of Zelda.  Instead of performing inane tasks like like chasing balls across a screen, I could follow a high-fantasy adventure story-line and solve puzzles in addition to fighting the usual baddies.  But I didn’t rush out and buy a Nintendo console. I’d fallen head over heels for another emerging high tech – personal computing.  In 1984, my parents gave me an IBM PCjr. (Yes, I again backed the wrong horse; others had gone over to Radio Shack’s TRS-80.)  In college, it was still the day of Fortran, punch cards and mainframes that were perpetually “down” and I was unable to complete my computing assignments.  This dissuaded me from a career in computer science.  The idea that I could now sit down and finagle programs on my own time blew my mind.  But I quickly learned that the PCjr wasn’t a “real” computer (by today’s standards), and cast it aside.  More adulting happened.   But Dear Reader, you know what happened next.  It was the early 1990’s.  I discovered THE INTERNET.  The World Wide Web opened to the public and I wanted in it.  

Thus began one of the most expensive hobbies outside of car collecting.

The PC that started it all for me – the Packard Bell 386.

Developers released software for word processing, data-basing, rudimentary graphics, as well as access to the internet through Compuserve, Prodigy, and AOL.  I ran out and purchased a Packard Bell 386 (fondly known as Packard Hell) with a 120MB hard drive and 2MB RAM, and a 5.25 and 3.5 floppy drives.   I cruised the internet at a snail’s pace on a 24 baud modem. It was heaven.  When the 386 reached the end of it’s usefulness, I chucked it for the faster 486.  It too reached it’s upgrade cap (which occurred roughly every two years) so out it went.  Because it cost less to buy the parts than buy a complete computer, I started building my own.  On and on the cycle went of upgrading components and building or buying new computers.  I’ve happily remained on this wheel for over 25 years.  Since manufacturers have miniaturized chips so much and the speed of components have far exceeded the needs of the average user other than a gamer, graphics artist or architect, the turnover time for new computers is much longer. 

But I told you I was a gamer, right? 

The Nintendo Switch Zelda: BotW Edition. Because you can never spend too much money.

For the last month I’ve become enamored over a home console again, the brand spanking new Nintendo Switch and it’s pilot game, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild.  Yes, I’ve come full circle.  No, I don’t own it yet.  I’ve been watching other gamers play it on TwitchTV.  Yes, a gamer watching other people game is a thing.  Don’t laugh.  This looks awesome.  You can play it on a television then “switch” instantly to a portable hand held device without missing a step in the game.  Its manufacturer suggested price is $300 but retailers have hiked the price to over $400.  The game is $70.  So this new wave in gaming high tech is expensive which gives me pause. 

But it’s still my latest shiney.

The geek in me is still strong.

 

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