Tag Archives: nerd

Trailer Breakdown for Avengers: Age of Ultron

23 Oct

Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to your dreams.

The official trailer for Avengers: Age of Ultron swept the internet off its feet last night, and it’s been trending everywhere since. I may have watched it one or two or fourteen times myself. However, if you have managed to not be run over by a screaming fanboy or fangirl trying to get you to watch the trailer with them, then click that link, for now is the time. 

And what a time to be alive, my friend.


“I’m gonna show you something beautiful.

Oh I know

“Everyone screaming.

Oh nvmaou_3

note: Quicksilver’s hair is dark. Something in this movie turns it white. carry on.aou_4

“For mercy.aou_5

The Captain has joined the trailer, ready to sock ol’ Hitler Ultron on the jaw.

“You want to protect the world,

Hawkeye, I’ve missed you gracing our screens with strangely angelic shots.aou_7

Thor, baby, on the bright side, no one in your family is even indirectly at fault this time.

“But you don’t want it to change.aou_9

(Visibly uncomfortable with the word “change”)aou_10

“You’re all puppets –


Breaking news: Thor is wearing normal clothes. It’s a good day. That is all. (I appreciate that he took a page out of Captain Hook’s book, entitled Wait I’ve Been Wearing This Outfit for Upwards of a Hundred Years)

Now is a good time to point out that in every shot Hawkeye appears in in this trailer, his face could be saying, “What did I miss?”aou_13

“Tangled in strings.aou_15

Remember when we thought the Winter Soldier and Loki were the best villains the MCU were going to conceive?


Such sweet, summer children.


*Nightmare version of “No Strings” from Pinocchio starts to play*

It’s okay, I was never able to watch Pinocchio without being mildly terrified anyway.


Honey, is that another new suit? How many tailors are you wearing out?

Do you get it? aou_22

Wearing out.

It’s a clothing pun.aou_25

Bruce, I have not seen you in a shot yet that didn’t make me want to bundle you up and feed you a warm meal. Please stop this. You’re breaking me.

And Natasha, it’s okay. They’ll give you your own movie someday. aou_27

Whooaaa, whoa whoa, the twins and Ultron? Is Ultron to the Maximoffs as Magneto was to the Maximoffs in their first comics appearance?

(By the way, I mean in the sense of the Maximoffs being his indentured servants, not of them being his illegitimate children)aou_28

(But on that topic, if Pietro or Wanda gave daddy dearest a call, he could clean this mess up real quick. That’s a lot of metal.)aou_29aou_30

They’re like bugs. Like ants. Like ant-men.

Nah, that’s silly.

See? Look at Clint’s face. LOOK AT IT.

“What did I miss?”aou_32

What a glorious, glorious month.aou_33

“It’s the end.aou_34

“The end of the path I started us on.”

Ehhh, don’t flatter yourself. It was mostly Loki and Captain America.aou_35

And this guy, of course. By the way, don’t bother wondering about how you saw him burn that eye patch in favor of sunglasses in CA: The Winter Soldier.

“Nothing lasts forever.”

You’re right. He probably sat on those sunglasses. We’ve all been there, Fury.aou_37

Hey, look, it’s the classic Scarlet-Witch-is-going-bonkers pose!aou_38

Hey look, it’s me watching this trailer for the first time!aou_39

Wait. I saw concept art for this scene.

Oh my gosh yes it’s coming Hulkbuster yes




*On her way to get her own movie*aou_45

My only hope for this character is that they make him nearly as cool as Fox’s Quicksilver. That’s all I hope for anyone, really.

But for serious, I am so excited to see these two in action. They’re perfect.aou_47

This is a mighty meaningful and important stare for a character who was listed on imdb as a nameless “Asguardian god.” Speculation, please.


Are these uncomfortably chest-heavy shots of Thor going to be a regular thing in Marvel movies now? Is this like a subtle satire of how women have been treated in every superhero movie ever, or is it just fanservice?

I mean, I’m not complaining. Just confused.aou_50

*Nightmare Pinocchio music stops, replaced with nightmare Tarzan music*

♪I wanna know/Can you show me/I wanna know about these strangers like me/♬

Okay, back to nightmare realm Pinocchio.aou_51

Straight ahead, you’ll see our subtle reminder that this takes place in Russia.

If you look within your memories, you’ll remember that a certain wintery soldier was in Russia for quite some time between now and 1945.

If you search your heart for a strong sense of hope, you may see what I’m getting at.



Aw man, it’ll be good to have this champ in a movie again. Been too long.

“No, mother doth NOT know I weareth her drapes,aou_55


I know, right, Natasha? I cried.aou_57







Brofist, buddy. Bring it in.aou_61

That was the last vibranium on the planet, Steve, please be more carefulaou_62

“There are no strings on me.”aou_63

I have waited three years.


*To Be Read in River Song’s Voice*

22 Nov


Long before the word “spoilers” conjured up a mental image of one of my favorite time-traveling companions, it meant what is has always meant – foreknowledge of a subject that, as indicated, spoils it.

I’ve had far too much experience with this particular delight.

A lot of it was my fault, like the time I begged my sister to tell me why she was so depressed at the end of Mockingjay, or when I knowingly watched “Turn Left” from series four of Doctor Who before I even started season three.

Of course, spoiling has also just been due to unfortunate happenstances, such as when my sister and I tripped over some Doctor Who series seven plot points the day of the season premiere, and that one time when I accidentally did anything on the internet before reading The Fault in our Stars.


I still haven’t gotten around to reading that book, but, somehow, I can quote it for days.

All this to say, I don’t usually do enough to stay away from spoilers, what with the internet existing, and my priorities being all out of order. But a problem has arisen that requires me to play a little game I like to call “The Internet is Lava.”

If you had a childhood, you can probably guess how this game is played. Just for reference, it’s just ever so slightly less enticing than its eponymous schoolyard counterpart.

In any case, the problem that made this game necessary is as follows: I’m going to miss the Doctor Who 50th Anniversary episode. Now it’s not quite as bad as all that, I am still seeing it, as a theater in my town has graciously made it possible for me to see it three days later on Monday night.

I will be dressing up as Eleven and attending with my gorgeous friends Wasp and Invisible Woman, and my lovely [and tenaciously patient] mother. You could say I’m kind of excited.

I’m stupid excited.

But the fact remains that that is three days after every other fanboy and girl with BBC or BBCAmerica has seen it, reviewed it, gif-ed it, story-boarded it, and fanfic-ed it.

And for me, the internet, until that third day, will be a yawning pit of seductively available foreknowledge.

Dangerous thing, foreknowledge.

So between Saturday and Tuesday, I’m going radio silent as far as internet is concerned.

And when I get back, if the past is any indicator, you’ll know me from the all-caps declaration of how many times I died during the episode.

What about you all? Are viewing parties in the works, or is anyone else planning to play the internet is lava with me?

Trailer Breakdown for The Day of the Doctor

19 Oct

The Day of the Doctor.

The 50-year anniversary of the classic sci-fi show, Doctor Who.

It’s fair to say every DW fan who didn’t go to this year’s Comic-Con has been [very impatiently] awaiting this trailer since July.

And now that it’s finally here? Obviously, the next logical stage is to watch it until the very mention of it sickens you, correct? Click here to begin that particular journey, and then swing back around here to freak the heck out share in an insightful dialogue about it.

Or something.

(TARDIS noises)



Also, Doctor. That’s important too.

Is this whole trailer going to be in black and white? Because I appreciate a nod to original, colorless 1960’s television as much as the next guy, but I also really like the shade blue on that box over there.



(And Doctor, too.)

Ah, the first and fabulous. Look at that spectacular iceberg of a head of hair.

“I’ve been running all my lives,”



but I’m actually kind of happy to see you so hey there man


This is probably the first time that I’ve seen that skeleton-through-the-skin graphic and not scoffed loudly.

Well done, BBC.

“Through time and space,”

I have this theory that every time Matt Smith says the words “time and space,” a baby smiles for the first time. No way to prove it, but the point still stands.

Well, hello there, Doctor Two. You and your bowl cut look exceptional today.dw_10

“Every second of every minute of every day for over nine hundred years.”

Mm, yes. I would know The internet at large would know that scarf anywhere.


“I fought for peace in a universe at war.”

that expression

them jelly babies

I believe I’ve been compromised

Okay, let’s talk about this enigmatic, hastily-shot graffiti.

No more what? No more fighting for peace in a universe at war? No more Doctors? No more jelly babies? No more explanation?



But seriously, no more what?





“Now, the time has come to face the choices I made in the name of the Doctor.”

You  know, I think fencing in a fancy suit was one of your better decisions.


Why, Clara, my adorable, hardcore, little baby barn owl. Welcome home.dw_17

“Our future depends on one single moment, on one impossible day;”

wUT *loses mind because perfect scene*






“The day I’ve been running from all my life…”



AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAoh hey I’m sorry that was obnoxious.dw_23


… And you know it’s about to get real.


“The day of the Doctor.”



Please, darling, I don’t speak European.


(All of America, in unison) “Ohhh!” 

Everybody, that’s really soon. I feel a countdown coming on.

Thirty-five days starting… NOW.

*dons bowtie and grabs screwdriver*

I’m gonna need a pot of coffee, twelve jammy dodgers, and a fez.


Time for Some Thrilling Heroics

27 Aug

Heroes stand up for what is right.

They respect themselves.

They respect others.

They respect the law.

They even respect the lawmakers (occasionally).

However, if your personality makes these things less than convenient for you (i.e., you’re a bit of a dirtbag), then there are other options.

At the present time, it is socially acceptable to be a borderline scummy superhero. Many mainstream heroes have given us very comprehensive tutorials for balancing your desire to help others with your desire to sass the entire population of earth.

Take Tony Stark, for example. If you are a young person (preferably a genius) who has a lot to offer, you can easily make sure no one forgets you. And when I say you “have a lot to offer,” I mean that you “have a lot.” That’s right. If you’re filthy stinking rich, the whole ballgame gets a lot more simple (also shown by Batman).

Being rich, entitled, and impervious to good influences also frees you up to feed your diva tendencies. Do something your underlings would expect rich entitled people to do, like build an enormous building with your name on it, or purchase expensive, massive stuffed animals for your loved ones (or loved one, as the case may be).

Admittedly, those ideas are a little overboard, but you catch my drift.

I understand that not everyone is a billionaire, so another hero you can take a cue from is Wolverine. He went from being an irritable assassin with alcohol and authority problems to an irritable X-man with alcohol and authority problems. The only change he really had to make at the beginning of his career was to kill a couple fewer people per day than normal.

If you don’t have the homicidal urges necessary to be a convincing Wolverine, nor the finances to be an Iron Man, you might want to look into the Thing. In this unique bracket, you can be the standard, upstanding hero, with the slight difference that you’re perpetually grumpy, kind of hate everything, and your given dialogue seems to be largely written by a seven-year-old boy with questionable examples of masculinity in his life.

But maybe being a dual dirtbag/superhero is not for you?

If you would rather be a terrible person before you go about your heroics, to get it all out of your system, you’re not alone. Many heroes have done it this way.

Thor Odinson is a good case to look at.

This shining example of a hero very nearly started a war between his kingdom and that of Jotunheim before he realized he was being a moronic egomaniac.

So can you!

You could even pull a Sylar and spend three and a half seasons years giving gory head lacerations to everyone within reach and then suddenly and inexplicably turn into someone you’d invite to your daughter’s baptism.

You have options.

See, In fiction, we do love our damaged superheroes, but as our world is currently non-fiction, we have a surplus of damage and a less-than-optimal amount of superheroes.  What’s up with that?



 a person who is admired or idealized for courage, outstanding achievements, or noble qualities.

This description is in no way exclusive to people with psychopathic tendencies, so please don’t be discouraged if you aren’t as much of a jerk as the heroes I’ve listed in this post.

After all, the world needs more heroes, and far, far fewer dirtbags.


10 Aug

If you’ve even tossed a sideways glance at my blog, you can probably tell I’m a fangirl. Whether your first clue was my casual declarations of love for people who don’t know I’m alive, or whether you just read the title of my blog, you know.

I’m an open book about this. A graphic novel, probably.

But I digress.

I’m a fangirl, yes. You may be one too, or a fanboy, if you’re reading this. (or maybe you just know me in real life, so you think you’re bound by contract to look at this thing)

But that is not our beginning and end, is it? There’s more to us.

A person could be a baby-sitting, music-writing, wildlife-enthusiast who loves to skateboard, and we would just call this person a “skater” and leave it at that.

That, my friends, is the magic of labels!

Labels have a definite negative connotation, but they don’t always feel like a bad thing. I’ve grown so accustomed to the label “nerd” that I’ve changed from detesting it to preferring it.  I feel as if I would be almost unrecognizable without that sticker on my forehead.

Labels are comfortable. If you’re given a label, it feels like you’ve been categorized. You know where you belong. You find people with the same label and make easy friends. But as much as labels are capable of bringing people together, we can’t forget that the entire purpose of labeling is to keep like items in the same place, and to separate them from other objects.

Obviously, that is no perfect metaphor. If I, as a fangirl, spend a day with a hipster, some all-powerful, OCD-driven dude doesn’t reach out of the sky and stuff me back in my room with my laptop open to tumblr. I do that by myself What I’m trying to say, is that if one of your traits, hobbies, or interests earns you a label, that label does not define you. That label was created for a people who are similar to you, but are in no way, shape, or form, you.

Labels not only provide you with a name, they lay expectations on you. You are suddenly supposed to be the prime example of your kind. You’re not expected to exhibit any traits that are incongruent with your label.

And no matter what label you’ve been assigned, or what label you’ve chosen to identify with, you will fail. Plain and simple.

I’ve been called “geek,” “nerd,” and “fangirl,” all of which I tend to agree with, but I don’t watch My Little Pony, and I have no clue what Homestuck is. I’m not a straight-A student, I don’t enjoy science and I’m not good at math. I really enjoyed Iron Man 2 and 3. Do these things mean that my nerd card is going to be revoked?

Are the geek police going to burn down my house tonight?

[Please don’t.]

I am a Christian, and that word can sometimes be used as a label too. Not a bad label – I don’t regret my decision to be one – and I think that “Christian” is different from other labels because it cannot be assigned to you unless you assign it to yourself. But it still can function as a label, because it’s another title that I fail in. The Bible says that all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.

Well now, that was quick.

See, I’ve failed in every label I’ve taken on, and I will continue to do just that.

No label is a perfect label, because labels do not work on us. 

(Unless you are an office supply)

Humans are not boxes of items to be neatly categorized. We are crazy, beautiful, and far too messy to be labelled in any cohesive fashion.

We’re just… so changeable.

I think we can all agree that we should not stuff something as important as our identities into a neat little box. Your identity is important. Don’t base it in anything more temporary than eternal, or anything more constricting than infinite.

So next time someone labels you, or you label yourself, or you label somebody else (It’ll happen. We’re human. We name stuff.), just remember that people are not office supplies; no human organization technique is one-size-fits-all.

You are the only you.

Own it.

Another Very Whovian Post

7 Aug

Last Sunday, an announcement of inestimable importance was made to the geek world.

As you already have internet access, chances are you’ve heard this news. You may have already drawn up fan art and written fanfics and spammed internet forums with your opinion.

However, I’m going to re-announce it, because news this massive has to be taken in doses. Let’s take it back to Sunday.

Last Sunday, we learned who the Twelfth Doctor was.

Last Sunday, we learned who’s still not ginger.

Number Nine does, as ever, speak the truth.

Ladies, gentlemen, and variations thereupon, meet Peter Capaldi, the Twelfth Doctor.


Or, as the Whovian internet community has come to know him, Alpacapaldi.


That’s correct. We’ve only acknowledged his existence for four days, and we’ve already pasted his face onto a fluffy quadruped. Welcome to the family, Peter.

When the news broke, I was in my church nursery, trying to follow someone’s live-blogging of the program. (For the record, hiding an emotional crisis is even harder when you’re surrounded by adults who don’t care and nine-month-olds who aren’t even aware that they’re missing out on something)

When the Twelfth Doctor’s name was announced, I pulled up Internet Movie Database as fast as possible and searched for Peter Capaldi’s bio.

And then proceeded to stare at the page blankly.

I’m not sure what I was expecting.

But it’s safe to say that fifty-five-year-old Capaldi was not it.

It was like seeing someone I’ve known and loved for years suddenly turn into someone I just don’t.

So, basically… regeneration.

I went through the normal stages of acceptance. Caring soul that I am, of course I made sure half my church knew about this Gallifrey-tinted revelation. Shipper that I am, I carried on to mourn the loss of my young Doctor and the sudden creepiness of Whouffle (the Clara/Doctor ship). But then, fan that I am, I remembered: The Doctor is over 1200 years old.


Fifty-five is fabulous.

If you’re over a hundred years old and you’re still in charge of your bodily functions, it’s impressive. So being over a thousand years old and looking fifty-five – you’re doing pretty darn well, friend.

And as far as casting goes, it makes sense. If you’re like me and spend far too much brain power empathizing with fictional characters, you’ve probably noticed Eleven’s I’m-At-Least-Four-Hundred-Years-Too-Old-For-This look.

(If you’ve bothered to stick around this long in the post, I’m going to assume you do spend an inordinate amount of brain power on fiction. You’re not alone here.)

In most of his recent episodes, Eleven has a moment where every single one of his 1200 years shows on his face. He spends so much time trying to be an adolescent; I’m sure his repressed tired old man is screaming to get out.

I don’t think that Twelve will, in fact, be a “tired old man,” but I think he will serve as a reminder that the Doctor has been around the block a few times, and has most certainly been hurt and hardened by it.

So, while I’m sure that I won’t like to see my Doctor sign off, I am intrigued by the impending next few seasons. I am also pretty certain that Capaldi will soon be added to the list of men whom I shouldn’t be attracted to, but am anyway.  I look forward to the adventures that always accompany the last Time Lord.

The Twelfth Doctor

So, dear Twelve:

Ain’t No Party Like Comic-Con

22 Jul

A little while back, I was mindlessly scrolling through tumblr, when I stumbled upon a strange image.

It was a young man with a bar stool on his head. In one hand, he held a whisk, and in the other, a plunger.

The caption read “My cosplay.”

You know how he looks to normal people?


This dude looks stark raving mad.

But to those of us in the know – well, he still looks stark raving mad, but we know he’s dressing up as the Doctor’s most hated enemy, the Dalek. (Daleks have no concept of elegance)

Now picture this type of person, fully insane and loving it, and multiply it by (give or take) 130,000. Just for kicks, give them all money to burn and take away any semblance of will power they thought they had. Got it? Good. Now put all of them in the same convention center in a little town called San Diego. Hello, Comic-Con.

The 2013 San Diego Comic-Con ended last Sunday after four days of fangirls and fanboys cosplaying, trailer-watching, panel-visiting, line-standing, and a gloriously unhealthy amount of screaming. I did not attend, but I was as present as I could be without utilizing money and gas to be “there” in the physical sense. From my remote location, I learned a few things about this year’s SDCC.

  • At the X-Men: Days of Future Past panel, attendees asked all the right questions: “With the expanding Marvel universe… Is Deadpool possible?”
  • … And got all the wrong answers: “Anything’s possible.

So… no? Just say no. Stop allowing my hopes to exist.

There would have been a Catching Fire trailer breakdown post, but there’s already been one trailer released, and as my breakdown dialogue would have been made up of all-caps declarations of love for this film and its characters, it would have gotten real weird real fast. And my posts are never weird.

  • The Doctor Who 50th Anniversary trailer was shown exclusively to the comic-con audience.
  • Said trailer was then denied internet release for a few weeks. Or months. 

Remember, these are the same people who still haven’t given you season three of Sherlock.

  • Season four of Sherlock was confirmed. 

Cool, guys. I’ll just pencil that in for 2021.

  • Loki of Asgard gate-crashed the Thor: The Dark World panel and raised his army from a seemingly innocent crowd of by-standers.

And every Hiddlestoner there died instantaneously. I’m only kind of exaggerating. Watch the way-too-easy take-over here.

  • The title of Avengers 2 was made public. The year 2015 will see the release of The Avengers: Age of Ultron.

I know what you’re thinking. And by that, I mean, “I know what I was thinking.”

“Yes! Finally, an intro for Henry Pym (Ant-Man/Giant Man/Goliath/Yellowjacket/The dude who created Ultron) and Janet Van Dyne (Wasp), who, by the way, should have shown up a while ago, but who cares? No one can leave them out of the story now!”

  • Joss Whedon confirmed that Henry Pym would not be part of Ultron’s origin story.

Not cool.

These are just a few highlights from the biggest nerd party in the country. I didn’t attend, and maybe you didn’t either. That’s fine! It’s nothing to be ashamed of, and hey, you can get most of the details on the internet anyway.

We didn’t make it this time. That’s okay.

But let’s not make it a habit.

See you next year, fanpeople.

How I Almost Went to the Dark Side

12 Jul

Opinions are important.

If you take the time and initiative to form one, it shows that you are thinking, and that is the sign of a healthy mind, and one that is not content to be passive in every issue. I respect that.

By the way: today’s message comes to you from the girl who shouted angry verbal abuse at her email inbox for an inordinate amount of time after receiving a correspondence from someone with a different point of view from hers.

Wait though, before you start judging me, know that she insulted my favorite book.

So, see? It’s hardly an overreaction that I’ve worked up enough hostility to expect Emperor Palpatine to walk through the door any second and invite me to join the Dark Side.

If you’re a book lover, chances are you’ve felt my pain. In fact, if you’ve ever passionately enjoyed any medium of entertainment, you’ve probably felt it.

You’re having a conversation with someone, and everything is going just fine until the topic of literature, music, or television comes up. You ask the person how they feel about a certain novel or band or show, or whatever it is – you make sure to leave out the bit about how much irrational love you have for it. You are testing the waters to see if they share your clearly impeccable taste.

And then they say it. They have an opinion. And heaven forbid – it is not yours.

There are nice ones, who present their bad experience in a less-than-overly-critical way.

And then there are the ones like I read in an email a couple days ago. The ones that are meant to pick apart the subject matter, but instead are received like personal attacks. I read the message and, although the offending individual was only insulting A Wrinkle in Time, I felt as though she were calling my newborn daughter[nonexistent] an ugly, disgusting piece of trash.

In a case like mine, one is left with only three options:

  • Respond with an all-caps email that informs the person that they have a horrific lack of taste and that you hope they “STEP ON A LEGO EVERY DAY FOR AN ENTIRE WEEK”
  • Respond with a kind email that points out the parts of the book that had a profound effect on you and ask whether the person would consider going over them again
  • Stew angrily and not reply at all; avoid eye contact in future run-ins; never mention subject matter again

Guess which one I chose.

No, not the first one, who do you think I am? Wow, guys.

I’m very possessive of the things I love, and in a lot of cases, that’s perfectly fine, even beneficial. But when it comes to something like this, I need to let it go.

Chances are, in my line of interests, this is going to happen to me again, and it will likely happen to you as well. The Sith Lord of fandom-fury will reach out to us again.

“The hate is swelling in you now… Give in to your anger. With each passing moment you make yourself more my servant.”

When this happens, we need to step back, raise our  light sabers, and say, “No.” No, we will control our anger, not be controlled by it. We will love what we love but not hate others for it not loving it. And, actually, while we’re at it, we should probably invest in light sabers.

Thus ends today’s rant. Let me know if something like this has happened to you before, and whether you dealt with it better than I did.

If you need me, I’ll be re-reading A Wrinkle in Time so I can console her and remind her how beautiful she is.

Glue Some Gears On It

9 Jul

The first time I was exposed to steampunk, I didn’t even recognize what was happening. I just remember thinking, “I would like a top hat.”

And that was the end of it. I literally believed that the definition of steampunk was the combination of top hats and goggles.

Pretty darn simple, really!

That’s why I’m so confused when I look at my desk and see my homemade steampunk goggles sitting there, doing nothing but daring me to try to explain why I made them.

I can’t, guys. I really can’t.

    “Are you talking to goggles?”

Oh, there you are, grown-up self. Now shut up.

Eventually, I went to all the trouble of looking “Steampunk” up on urbandictionary. Yeah, that’s right, this girl goes all out.

That particular well of information informed me:

Steampunk is a subgenre of speculative fiction, usually set in an anachronistic Victorian or quasi-Victorian alternate history setting. It could be described by the slogan “What the past would look like if the future had happened sooner.” It includes fiction with science fiction, fantasy or horror themes.

I would love an explanation of the goggles, but okay. I can handle this. Still though, this was an easy nerd topic to sweep under the rug.

The day it stopped being easy to ignore was a day I was hanging out with my dear friend and fellow blogger, the lovely Kire. She told me about a steampunk musical group. I blinked. Those words didn’t go together, did they? That was like describing a band as young adult dystopian fiction, wasn’t it? Regardless of my confusion, Kire let me know that the band she was introducing to me was called “Steam Powered Giraffe.”

If I was skeptical before, you can safely assume that I was mystified by now.

And then she told me, “The lead singers were trained as mimes.”

If anyone else had been telling me about this, right about now would be when I would overturn the table we were leaning on and run away in the midst of the confusion. But it was not. It was Kire. So I looked up a music video.

[Excuse me while I interrupt myself. How to describe Steam Powered Giraffe… Do you like music with hauntingly beautiful harmonies? Cheesy jokes and vaudevillian storytelling? Pantomime? Robots? Steampunk? How about feeling slightly creeped out? Then you are perfect for the SPG fanmily. Click here to love it with me.]

After this giraffe-flavored revelation was when I made the afore-mentioned goggles. Free time does weird things to me. But I still felt like I was pretending to understand something I did not.

Then I heard a lovely song called, “Just Glue Some Gears On It (And Call It Steampunk).”

I found a blog post that informed me that I’ve seen and enjoyed some steampunk films.

I saw a hilarious spread on Regretsy entitled “Things That Are Not Steampunk.”

So then, after far more research than I’d go through for any school project I’m actually supposed to do, I finally feel as though I get it. To quote “Just Glue Some Gears On It,”

“Steampunk refers to a type of science fiction about alternate pasts, not future prediction. Often set in Victorian Britain, but the history of technology has been rewritten… Retro-futuristic is a good explanation; blend antique reality with imagination.”

And now, now that I no longer feel like a poser when I like a steampunk pin on Pinterest, and now that I feel I could properly describe it to someone who is confused about it, now that I’ve accepted that steampunk music exists…

Even now.

I still don’t really know why the goggles are a thing.

But good heavens, they look dapper.


3 Jul

Greetings, friends, family, and fangirls. I just returned from a trip to Washington DC a couple days ago.


Anyone want to go back with me?

I’m only kind of kidding.

As I said in a post from a couple weeks ago, I was selected, along with 46 other kids, to go to Washington DC to learn more about America’s history and government, give speeches, talk about the constitution, and go places where National Treasure was filmed (those were not the exact words the briefing included). So thus began the first extended trip and the first flight I’ve ever experienced without my parents. And a long one. A really long one.

On the first flight there, I sat next to the other DC-bound Oregon tribute (there’s probably a word that sounds less Hunger Games-esque, but I can’t think of it), whom I’d met a couple weeks earlier at the state competition. No nerdy tendencies, but a very quality, fun-to-talk-to guy. And then on the second flight, I sat between a frighteningly silent woman and a bald dude who brought and watched that one movie where people get shot at and Bruce Willis stands sideways to the camera and looks worried a lot.

You know, that movie.

And when I arrived, I started to have minor heart attacks.

I’m a bit of an introvert, so when I first imagined going to Washington DC knowing a grand total of zero people, I can’t say that I had much confidence that I wouldn’t spend the entire week sitting in a corner with my iPod scrolling the River Song tag on tumblr. And, if you remember, the state competition, as awesome as it was, contained no people with which I could have a decently nerdy conversation.

Even without that particular anxiety of being the only person to get my references, I was fully aware that I was not quite as prepared as I should have been. Going into the program, I knew that my default setting was going to be “find someone who looks like they know what they’re doing.” I was pretty sure the week was going to be stuffed to the brim with more-qualified-than-thou people looking down at me and going:

I am pleased to announce that every negative expectation I had evaporated when I arrived.

I met awesome people and went to awesome places and did awesome things. That vague? Yes. I did far too much to cover in one semi-readable post. But in the midst of all the awesome, I can’t say I contained my excitement as well as I could have. Hey, who was I to deny the pillars of the Lincoln Memorial the hugs they so desperately needed?

And when it came to my desperate need to make obscure geeky references? I was at the breakfast table the third morning with five other people, and we were discussing bowties. “Bowties are cool,” I muttered.


But I was not to be fully sequestered from my fan-brethren.

One young man, whom I already knew to be a nerd (a Wholockian! What are the odds?) due to a recent conversation, was speaking to a couple of the girls in front of me. I recognized the struggle he was having as he turned to one of them and said, “Well, have you read Ender’s Game?”


“What?!” He turned to the other girl. “Have you read Ender’s Game?”

She shook her head. “No?”

I smiled at the familiarity of the situation and, out of sympathy, stepped forward. Excuse me ladies. Someone is finally speaking my language. “Are you excited for the movie?” I asked him, pretending I had actually been invited to this conversation. Judging by his strong fanboy reaction to the affirmative, I don’t think he minded the interruption far too much.

There’s just a radar for this sort of thing, and I am not one to ignore its sirens. The trip did not conclude before I found two additional lady Whovians and a Marvel movie fangirl.

There are few things more encouraging than finding that you have things in common with complete strangers who live all across the country. And even beyond those wonderful geeky discoveries, I was blessed with two fabulous ladies for roommates (shout-out to the three musketeers), and dozens of other ladies and gentlemen and athletes who were entirely spectacular for the whole trip.

There were mass sing-alongs on the tour bus, firefly-catching at the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial, squealing at the Lincoln Memorial, dancing at the Supreme Court, and more than a fair amount of pretending I was Ben Gates from National Treasure.

It was amazing.

When I first began to meet the other 45 kids on the first day there, I realized that most of us had one thing in common: we weren’t entirely sure what we were in for. Many of us shared the thought that the week might be full of uncomfortable moments and less than ideal companions. So basically, we built on that foundation of unfamiliarity, and by the end of the seven days, going back home with the knowledge that we may never see each other again was far harder than we had thought it would be. I miss them all.

As we all went around friending each other on facebook the day after we went our separate ways, I felt like it was just our elusive way of saying, “We’re never going to hang out again, but let’s pretend we might.”

As sad as I am that I  got so close to these people only to go home and be several hours away and sometimes several states away from every one of them, I am ecstatic that I had this opportunity to meet them.

As disenchanting as it was to go on this fantastic adventure and then return home and remember that I have responsibilities, I am ecstatic that the adventure happened.

And I’m just as ecstatic for all the future adventures that we have in store.

But seriously, who’s coming with me next time?