23rd May2013

Thrift Justice – Hell Naw! Are You For Real?

by Will

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Do we really need an intro. Y’all know what this is all about. These are things I find in thrift stores. Usually, I write about the things that I buy. Every now and then, however, I focus on things that I simply HAD to leave behind. This is one of those posts. These are recent items that I just couldn’t believe I found, but felt would make great conversation pieces. So, away we go!

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Sure, Jakks eventually figured out how to make a decent wrestling figure, but those earliest offerings were hideous. This hails from the “Attitude Era” that I missed in its entirety, so I know next to nothing about Sable OR Shotgun Saturday Night. From what I can tell from this figure, Sable was just a wrestling groupie, right? She wasn’t a “Diva”, was she? Please tell me she wasn’t a Diva. She looks like someone’s slutty mom. She needs to take that chair packaged with her, and go sit down somewhere.

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Hehe. And notice that the seal is unbroken on this CD…

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I’m sorry, but no one has ever said “Man, I could really watch 26 hours of The Price Is Right today!” If they did, they’re probably a stoner, and can’t remember where they left this box set. I mean, really? I would watch a compilation of every episode where Barker did something sleazy to spokesmodels and women contestants, but just random-ass episodes? No, thank you!

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I’m amazed this thing actually exists. For those not in the know, this is Harry from Harry and the Hendersons. I’ve never seen the movie in its entirety,  but I was really into the Saturday afternoon syndicated show. The dad was the evil senator from the X-Men movies. That’s all I really remember about it. Well, that and that it aired along with What A Dummy! and Tiny Toon Adventures (before it was repurposed as a kids show).

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This saddens me, as I wonder how it ended up being donated. It’s such a personal thing, and not something that would really sell to anyone other than its original recipient. As you can see, it’s some sort of CD to commemorate Mothers Day 9 years ago. Did Mom die? Did the family get a divorce? Did she finally get to the age where she started throwing away all the homemade gifts the kids made her over the years? I’m always curious when I see such personalized items being resold.

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California Dreidels?! Can’t black people have anything to themselves?! First Elvis came along, then Eminem, and now this?!!

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OK, read this slowly, as it gets kinda good. When you get cards from a questionable source, always inspect ya deck! I saw this in a batch of Yu-Gi-Oh! cards I got, and noticed that it looked…janky. Look at the edges and borders. I don’t think this card is real. So, I grab a corner and start peeling…

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WTF?! It’s like finding Narnia! What’s under this nefarious cover?

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An entirely different card! There’s some kinda card shark on the Yu-Gi-Oh! scene! How does a tween turn to such a life of crime? Who taught him to do this? Has he already been shot in the face following a Chinatown game gone wrong? Why?! WHY?!!!

Welp, that wraps it up for this installment. I gotta Google “Chinatown Yu-Gi-Oh! shootout”. Come back tomorrow, ’cause it’s Friday, and you know what happens around here on Fridays…

02nd May2013

Thrift Justice – That Figures

by Will

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I’m an action figure guy. That really shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone, but just in case you’re new here, I thought I’d let you in on that little tidbit. So, when thrifting, the main thing I’m looking for is some sort of cool action figure – usually to fill holes in my many odd collections. Here are a few I’ve found recently.

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Everyone remembers the various Playmates Star Trek lines, but the earlier Galoob TNG series gets no love.  Released in 1988, these 4-ish inch figures depicted all of the bridge crew (except Counselor Troi). There was even a role play Phaser and a shuttlecraft playset. When the line first came out, my mom bought my Riker and the Phaser from People’s Drug (it was the precursor to CVS in the DC area). I loved that Phaser, but it went through HELL. I still have it, but it doesn’t have a prayer of working, and I lost ever part that could be lost on it. Anyway, due to a time rift, Riker traveled back in time to fight alongside the G.I. Joes. Later on, I got Picard from a friend, and he joined Riker in his 20th century adventures. So, when I saw Worf (in his rare Lt. JG colors), I had to snatch him up. The odd thing about these figures was that their Phasers were molded into their hands. This is fine for Away Team missions, as they’re always at the ready. In bridge scenarios, however, it’s like everyone’s expecting a Shakespearean ending to things.

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This is probably the only Wonder Woman villain who matters. Get away from me, The Mary Sue! You know it’s true. Anyway, I bought the “classic” Cheetah, as she’s the one who resonated with me from the old Secret Society of Supervillains comic. I really had no desire to buy this one, but I found her for a dollar, so why not?

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I’ve mentioned it a ton of time, but The Undertaker is my favorite WWE character. A lot of people are over him, but that’s exactly why I love him: his gimmick has no idea still “working” in the current WWE climate. It’s like when kids are way too old to still believe in Santa, yet their parents still go along with it (I was that kid, btw). The current WWE Universe is comprised of stars who USE THEIR REAL NAMES! If I were a wrestler, I’d probably be Bruce Williams or some shit like that. Yet, in the midst of all of these steroid case prettyboys, there’s a dude who we’re still supposed to believe comes from Hell, has a mangled brother, gets his power from an urn, and continues to return from the dead more times that Jesus, Jean Grey, and Wolverine combined! Anyway, the larger figure hails from the late Jakks era, after Taker married Sara, hence the neck tattoo. I’ve said it a thousand times, but my favorite Undertaker quote comes from the WWE Unscripted coffee table book. They ask him, “Given the success rate of wrestling marriages, what happens if you break up?” Even though it’s in print, you can still hear his voice saying it: “I guess I’ll have to find another girl named Sara.” Well, they did break up, but his next girl was named Michelle, and he had the tattoo removed. Next to him is a mini Taker who came from one of those little playsets. I just like him ’cause his tiny tongue is hanging out like a puppy.

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I never really collected a ton of Batman: The Animated Series toys while they were out. There were too many overlapping toylines, so I was still busy with the Batman Returns line when B:TAS debuted, and then I moved on to Power Rangers. Still, today’s kids have got no love for the show, as there have been 2 other animated Batman incarnations since then. So, these are kinda plentiful in thrift stores today. Usually, it’s just a bunch of beat up Jokers, but every now and then you can find a Scarecrow, or a Man Bat, or even a Catwoman. So, I’m currently fortifying my villains. I already had Riddler, Joker, and Two-Face from the old days, but I’ve since picked up Man Bat, Catwoman, Penguin, and this guy right here.

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I like Iron Man armors. I wasn’t always that way. Like most comic fans, I didn’t give a shit about Tony Stark until those movies started coming out. Then, I went back and read the “iconic” Iron Man stories (which reminds me – I really need to start doing Adventures West Coast again!), and realized I had been wrong. So, I’ve found myself buying up all the various armor figures I find. I think I have all of the 4″ Iron Man 2 Comic Series figures, and I’ve snatched up an cheap Marvel Legends I can find. I kinda hate that Rhodey’s missing his mask, but it’s still a cool figure.

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MEGO! I got this thing for $2. I was so shocked when I saw him, and snatched him off the peg. I couldn’t believe I’d gotten an authentic Mego, in pretty good shape for such a low price. I couldn’t wait to get on Twitter and boast to all of my followers about him. Until I got him home. You see, his left knee is busted, but you could really tell outside of the suit. So, he casually sits around, hoping that trouble comes to him. Still, he’s a good looking figure!

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I recently said that I secretly collect Marvel Legends movie figures, but that wasn’t the whole story – I also collect ML X-Men. As long as they’re not retail, I’ll pretty much buy anyone who’s even tangentially related to the X-Men franchise. This Storm has some stray marker streaks on her, but she knew what to expect when she left home wearing white after Labor Day!

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Yay! Power Rangers! ‘Cause we don’t talk about them nearly enough on this site. Anyway, I hate the price point of the 4″ figures, so I only buy them used or in gift sets. That explains Super Samurai Green, Dekker, and Samurai Yellow. As for RPM Red, there’s another weird collection I have. Ya see, I used to buy each season’s team, but I got to an age where I didn’t care as much and fell behind. Still, the key ranger in ANY team is the red one. So, if I come across the Red Ranger for a series I don’t already have, I buy him. One day, I may continue to fill out that team, but Red’s really the only one who matters. And the big Lost Galaxy Red is a Super Legends figure, with the same articulation as the MMPR Red figure that’s currently hard to find in stores. He’s got some play wear, but if you’ve ever watched that season, the “battle damage” is on par with what Leo put that suit through.

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Finally, we’ve got the 6″ Flame On Human Torch from the FF movie line. Again, this is Marvel Legends compatible, and he was $1. So I had to get him, and now my FF team is complete!

So, there ya have it. What figures do y’all collect? Be sure to share that in the comments!

26th Apr2013

West Week Ever – 4/26/13

by Will

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I wanna start things off with a grammar lesson. Actually, it’s more of a grammar pet peeve, but I hate the phrase “pet peeve” – what the fuck is a “peeve”? Sounds like a lady problem. Anyway, I try to stay away from grammatical issues, as I think everyone has a blind spot. Lord knows I don’t always have the period within the quotation marks, nor do I say everything properly. Still, this is an epidemic that MUST be stopped: the improper use of and I.

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Back in the late 90s, and I wasn’t being used properly. In fact, it really wasn’t being used much at all. Everyone was using and me. Suddenly, a bumper crop of Grammar Nazis appeared. Whenever someone would say, “Kelly and me are going to the mall”, a Grammar Nazi would pop up and, in a condescending tone, say “Kelly and I are going to the mall.” The original speaker would usually roll her eyes, and respond with a curt “Whatever.” Pretty soon, it seemed like the Grammar Nazis had a recruitment drive, as the began to pop up everywhere. They were in coffee shops, PTA meetings, even at the bank! Eventually, the Grammar Nazis won, but that victory came at a price.

You see, once it was ingrained in people’s heads that and I was sometimes the suitable choice, these people began to use it ALL the time. It’s like and me no longer existed, as they were scared of the Grammar Nazis, even though they had already moved on to other things, like correcting there/their/they’re on the Internet. Soon, it became common to hear someone say something like, “Grandma gave $20 to Timmy and I.” Or “She was speaking to Christy and I.” NO! This is wrong. You see, here’s something to keep in mind: how would you say it if there was no other person involved in the situation? You wouldn’t say “Grandma gave $20 to I”, nor would you say “She was speaking to I.” In both cases, you would use ME. So, when someone else is added to the mix, YOU WOULD STILL USE ME! “Grandma gave $20 to me/Grandma gave $20 to Timmy and me”. It’s that simple. Just take a second to think about it before you say it, and eventually it’ll happen without you even needing to think about it. And by NO MEANS, should you ever say and I’s. I’ve actually heard things, like “My wife and I’s commute is usually 3 hours.” NO! This one is a bit more tricky. It should be “My wife’s and my commute…” Got it? Good.

So, who’s ready for some pop culture?

I rarely have to do this, but I need to issue a correction about something I wrote earlier this week. You see, I said that Psych-Out was my first G.I. Joe figure, but that’s not entirely true. There’s a caveat to that: he’s my first G.I. Joe to survive. Let me take you back a little.

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I’ve said it before, but I wasn’t exactly a G.I.Joe kid growing up – at least not as much as my friends on Twitter. I think it’s because most of them are about 4-5 years older than me, so it was more prominent in their formative years. I, actually, grew up on the much-derided DiC era of Joe (Got! To get! Tough! Yo! Joe!). Sometimes, I’d rent the older episodes from Erol’s Video (this was pre-Blockbuster, in the DC area), but I know more about Metal Head and Ski Weekend Snake Eyes than I do about the MASS Device and the USS Flagg. My formative Joe years were around the ages of 10 and 11, while they were more 5-8 for other folks. So, when the earlier toys were on shelves, I didn’t exactly have a frame of reference, and didn’t go near them.

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Around the late 80s, my cousin came from Mississippi to live with us, as she thought it would be easier to get a job in DC. When she’d go off on business trips, I’d always beg her to bring me something back. I meant a souvenir, but I think she just stopped at a KMart before getting on the bus. So, one time she came back, and she had brought me the L.C.V. Recon Sled. I didn’t know anything about G.I. Joe at the time (I was about 5 at this time, and didn’t watch a lot of cartoons), but it looked cool. The only problem was that I didn’t have any figures to drive it. Looking at the box, it appeared to be driven by a guy wearing a baseball jersey. In my mind, that meant that the Recon Sled must have been his personal vehicle. So, I told my mom I had to have that particular guy. Luckily, toy distribution was better at that time, as the next time we went to Toys “R” Us, there he was, and his name was “Bazooka”. Now, my mom had a really strict stance on toy guns at that time, which I’ll probably write about at some point. The main thing here was that he was shown shooting on the package, but I used my 5 year old mojo to convince her that “It’s not a gun. It’s a bazooka.” Seeing as how she’d never been to war, that seemed to work. I still think I agreed not to play with the bazooka, ya know, with the guy fucking named Bazooka.

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So, we get home, and I finally have the driver for my sled. All was right with the world. Since I’d never had a Joe before, I was fascinated by all of its joints – especially the fact that he could do a cycle spin if you twisted him enough at the waist. Do you see where this is going? Yeah, one turn too many, and POP! Bazooka go down de hole. I cried and cried, and showed him to my mom. She was going to take him back to the store (my mom would, and still will, take back anything), and I assumed get me a new one. Well, she took him back, but I never got another Bazooka. I don’t think he was on the pegs anymore when she went back. And, since I was still new to the world of action figures, I didn’t think any other figure would work. Only Bazooka could drive the Recon Sled! Over time, the sled got battered, as I ran it, driverless, into walls and shit. About a year later, I would get Psych-Out, and having learned my lesson, he wouldn’t be doing any cyclone punching. Eventually, I got another Bazooka, but my Recon Sled had left this world. Years later, it was finding a newer edition of Bazooka that ushered me into collection the G.I. Joe 25th anniversary line.

Recently at work, I’ve taken to streaming stand-up specials from YouTube to listen to in the background. Yesterday, I came across this bit from Steve Harvey’s final stand-up show. The funny thing about it is that Lindsay and I watched this exact episode of Family Feud last week, and she swore that they had to have been the dumbest family in the history of the show. It turns out she was right.

Links I Loved:

Agony, Ecstasy, Irony: The Fight For The Soul Of College A Cappella (NPR)

Administrators Gotta Administrate! The 20 Best Fictional Administrative Professionals (UnderScoopFire!)

King Kong World Tour — York, Pennsylvania (Cool and Collected)

22 Unbelievable Places that are Hard to Believe Really Exist (Bored Panda)

This Week’s Posts:
Mail Call Monday – Batman, Empowered, Joes and More!

Pitch Perfect and the True Story of Collegiate A Cappella

10 Superheroes Whose Current Costume Design Will Never Appear in a Movie

WWE Divas to Star in New E! Reality Series + 10 More WWE Superstars and the Reality Shows They’d Be Perfect For

Thrift Justice – The One With All The DVDs

And the 90s TV Sitcom podcast I told you about was posted over at Nerd Lunch

So, one of them drunkenly cussed out a cop, while the other saved rock and roll. One’s begging for fan money, while the other is “the world’s most beautiful woman”. Only one them, however, had the West Week Ever.

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I love the Hell out of Fall Out Boy. I discovered them when their third album, Infinity on High, was released – an album that was perfect from beginning to end. I went back and listened to their second album, From Under The Cork Tree, and hated it. I was starting to think they were a one hit wonder until I heard their Welcome to the New Administration mixtape , which I blogged about years ago. Needless to say, I loved that. Seeing as how it was a primer for their upcoming album, Folie A Deux, I expected good things from that album. Unfortunately, it was a “folly of DON’T”. They broke up shortly afterwards, and that wasn’t the note on which I wanted them to go out. Their hiatus was shortlived, though – especially after Patrick Stump’s solo album bombed, and they released Save Rock And Roll last week, which entered the Billboard charts as their second #1 album. Having listened to it, I’m not sure if they saved rock, but it’s certainly good to have them back. Just like Trek movies, it seems that every other FOB album is “the good one”, and luckily this fell in the right place in that sequence. For this, Fall Out Boy has the West Week Ever.

21st Mar2013

My (Alternate) Reality

by Will

I’m not always a happy person. Sure, I crack jokes and everything on Twitter, but I guess you could say I’m “faking it until I make it”. Let’s just say it really hits home when a nurse asks you, “Can you remember when you were last happy?” and your answer is “I was probably 12.” Man, this is a downer intro to a post! Anyway, at times, I’ve clung to the idea of alternate realities. Hell, anything’s possible and it’s not like you can disprove the possibility (Ha! Take THAT, condescending Web Atheists!). Maybe there’s a Will out there who’s bouncing off the walls, and people describe him in terms like “effervescent”. If there are other realities out there, just think of the craziness that could be going on. Or let me do the thinking for you!

As our music industry celebrated the release of Justin Timberlake’s single, “Suit & Tie”, this week, in other reality former Backstreet Boy Nick Carter just released “Blazer & Bolo”.

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And apparently he’s a motorboating enthusiast!

Meanwhile, things are getting dicey on the late night talk show scene. After 20 years on the air, UPN has announced that Nick Cannon will be replacing Arsenio Hall as the host of What Up, Moon? Industry experts aren’t sure how to react, as it was only two years ago that Hall reclaimed his show from Damon Wayans, Jr. After touring the country with Skee Lo and Bobcat Goldthwait, Wayans finally landed at NBC, but there are still hard feelings.

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Some third world country is about to get a shitload of Woof shirts airdropped into it

Speaking of Skee Lo, he and his wife, megastar Kelly Rowlands, are expecting their 3rd child. Fans were hoping Kelly would take time off to reunite with Destiny’s Child, but the group has been on hiatus since member Beyonce Knowles was arrested on drug charges back in 2003. She later appeared on the 5th season of Celebrity Rehab, where she proceeded to insult both Rowlands and the DC fans. Needless to say, Kelly won’t be saying Beyonce’s name anytime soon!

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Skee Lo’s “I Wish” is the highest selling record to date

Talks are heating up that Michael Jackson will be taking the judge’s chair vacated by Bobby Brown on The Voice. As everyone knows by now, Brown was recently named the Exec VP of Artist Development for Arista Records, and Jackson is coming off the recent cancellation of his children’s show, Jacko’s World.

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In the book world, bestselling author James Frey is four books into his Little Pieces Saga. He’s been doing the talk show circuit promoting the next installment, A Million Pieces More. Tonight, he’s going to be on Bob Barker’s CNN show and Soledad O’Brien’s show on Playboy Radio. Tomorrow morning, he’ll wake up bright and early to be a guest on Let’s Get It Started With Fergie.

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Even in an alternate reality, douchebags still look like this

In the world of professional sports, NFL commissioner Vincent McMahon has announced that Brock Lesnar’s contract has been renegotiated with the Washington Coloreds. McMahon refused to acknowledge questions concerning the team’s racist moniker. The last time he addressed it was during an interview with Tabitha Soren, where he remarked, “What? Isn’t that what we’re supposed to call them?”

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“The NFL is committed to diversity – unless you’re a minority, bald, and/or have a goatee. Then, you’re clearly a villain.”

In the world of politics, President Clinton just announced, “I did not have sexual relations with that woman…in her butt. Lord knows I tried.” This is the 12th sex scandal for the long-seated president. It was just last year that he uttered the similar words, “I did not have sexual relations with that woman…in her mouth.” Needless to say, there’s no end in sight for the War on Orifices. Pundits are saying that there should have been some sort of provision for removing Clinton from office, but it seems that no one knows the current whereabouts of the Constitution. At present, most US laws are tweeted from China, while forged copies of the fabled document occasionally show up in pawn shops, according to the Pawn Stars Channel.

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“My fellow Americans, tell me you don’t just wanna bite dat ass.

Continental War V rages on, as Germany just fell to invading forces from Poland. The US has been hesitant to enter the fray, however Germany is our leading source for electronics, so something will need to be decided before the Tivo production season kicks into high gear. This has caused China’s statehood talks to stall. If you’ll remember, the US traded the Puerto Rico Territory to Emperor Hirohito in 1952, thus acquiring the China Territory and gaining a US presence in the East.

Meanwhile, plans are underway to commemorate the anniversary of the tragic events of May 4th, 1999. It has been 14 years since the state of Hawaii was vaporized by a militant sect of Jedi disciples, in what is now referred to as Operation: Phantom Menace. This led to the widespread persecution of Jedi, with many leaving the fold due to risk of being charged for treason. The “religion” is currently prohibited on American soil.

Photo courtesy of bystander, who decided an Instagram filter should be applied

Photo courtesy of bystander, who decided an Instagram filter should be applied

In the business world, DisMart announced that they’re planning to open a kiosk on the International Space Station. A mere 10 years ago, this would’ve been something out of science fiction. However, after Sir Richard Branson mysteriously disappeared, DisMart submitted a bid for the Virgin Corporation. Pretty soon, Mickey Mouse and Wally the Wallflower will be heading to space!

Well, I think you’ve learned enough about this alternate reality. Perhaps you should count your blessings. I mean, I’ve heard great things about The Diagram 2, but do you really want 14 Skee Lo albums on your mPod? What? Oh, that’s what they’re called here. Ya know, ’cause Microsoft makes them. I’m always drifting off to this world, though, as I have quite the imagination. So, just let me know if you ever want an update on how things are going over there.

04th Mar2013

Thrift Justice – Injustice For All

by Will

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Every now and then, I get requests to point out some of my Thrift Fails. Contrary to how the posts come across, my success rate varies. For instance, a lot of my thrift stores recently did floorplan resets, which I HATE. This happens every 2 years or so, and it just kind of ruins the flow of things. Not only are product quantities at low levels, but it takes awhile for everyone to get used to the new location of certain aisles. As a result, I haven’t really bought anything in about a month from that particular chain. The last time, though, was the fault of management. This is going to come off as “Will’s being a whiny bitch”, but whatever – it’s MY site. Still, if there’s one thing I hate, it’s inconsistency in rules, and this is a prime example of that.

Last Wednesday, I stopped by a thrift store near home, and noticed  they’d gone through the dreaded aisle reset. They had a few “quirky” things, but nothing really awesome. That was, however, until I got to the VHS aisle. Only recently have I even started paying attention to tapes, as everything good is on DVD now, right? Right? Wrong. A lot of stuff has yet to be transferred to DVD, while certain things in the format have skyrocketed in value (like WWF tapes with the old logo). Well, on an endcap of children’s movies, I found this:

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Not actual pic. I stole this from some site.

An unopened, non-special edition boxed set of the Original Star Wars Trilogy from 1992. Just look at how beautiful that box is! The best part, however, was that it was still shrinkwrapped. Whenever I see tapes, I wondered how battered they are from being shoved in and out of old VCRs, but these tapes wouldn’t have that problem. They were virgins! This store sells VHS tapes for 3 for $1, so this was a great score. Or so I thought. When I got to the register, the cashier tried to pull the “there’s no price on this” routine. Let me back up a minute. I’m not sure if this is common for all stores, but this particular chain has a policy where they can’t sell anything that doesn’t have a price listed on it. This is a far cry from the “No Price? Finders keepers” policy of the local Goodwill! Anyway, this “rule” is some bullshit because it’s been broken MANY, MANY times. They look at it, they appraise it (usually at about $2-3 dollars), and we both go on our merry way. Not this time. She called over the Latina manager (this is important, because I’m going to play a race card soon). She turns it around in her hand, and goes “No…I cannot sell. No price.” I proceed to tell her that I got it over at the tapes. Tapes are usually 3/$1, as she knows, so why is this any different? It’s 3 tapes. Then, she looks at it some more, and tries a tactic that I know and hate: trying to side with me in how unfair the rules are. I know this game because I’ve played it. I worked retail, too, hon. She says, “I soory. Be can’t sale without the price. It’s reely a domb rool, but I canno sale.” I told her, Hell, I’d even pay $3 dollars if it was that big of a deal – that’s 9 tapes! Surely, she wouldn’t get in trouble over that. Then, remember that race card I mentioned? Well, I told her “The white manager usually assigns a price.”

There are many different managers at this store. One of them, seemingly the queen of them all, is this mean old white lady. She lords over her staff of Ecuadoreans. While it’s true that she had made some cash register verdicts on prices, she’s sometimes the real hardliner when it comes to the rule. Still, I was banking on exploiting this manager’s fear of her in order to get my way. It’s really kinda sad the person I’ve become since I started this whole racket. Anyway, IT WORKED! She sighed, and told the cashier to ring it up as the 3 tapes for $1. I was in the clear! Long Live The Man! Until this other dude came up out of nowhere. He was also an employee, and manager chick decided to show it to him. They started talking to each other in Spanish, while pointing at different things on the box. Since I was worldly enough to take French in school, I can only assume they said, “This is Star Wars. This shit’s worth something. Fuck this guy. Viva La Rasa!” What? Most of the Spanish I know was learned from WWE wrestlers after the Attitude Era! She comes back over to me and says, “No, I canno sale.” By this point, they had already rung up some of the stuff you’ll see below, and the cashier asked if it would be credit or debit. I stood there a few seconds, and said, “You know what? Yeah, I don’t think I’ll be taking any of this.” And I walked out. See? I told you I was a petulant little bitch.

I can’t win ’em all. I get that. I just feel like they should be consistent – the same with everyone, all the time. I’ve had that rule broken, and I’ve watched them break it for others. It just seems odd to me that something like this is when they’d decide to go by the book. It makes it look a little fishy on their end, if you ask me. It really kinda pissed me off, mainly because I’m an only child and used to getting my way. It’s a shame I never grew out of that. Anyway, I’ve got high blood pressure now, and this isn’t a hill on which to die, so I went home, smoked a cigar, and recorded the first ep of Classick Team-Up.

To close things out, here are some things I’ve seen recently that, while quaint, just weren’t coming home with me.

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The only reason I didn’t buy this was because I already own it. I’m not a hip-hop head, but I LOVE this album. I also love that awesome Bill Sienkiewicz cover. Bobby, Bobby Bobby, Digi, Digi, Digi!

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Never saw this movie, but I love a good vintage, carded figure. Still, I hate dragons and shit.

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The store had a bunch of ALF puzzles. Ya see, 20 years ago, families used to gather around the “boob tube” every Monday. Before watching the riveting adventures of a middle aged newswoman, they tuned into NBC to watch a show about a cat-eating alien with a cornucopia for a nose. This is his story.

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In my mind, the only people who owned LaserDisc players were Patrick Bateman types. Still, I almost bought this just to frame it.

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I almost bought it, but the die was missing. Kinda regret leaving it behind, come to think of it. C’est la vie…

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I’m ashamed by how much I wanted this. I didn’t want to own it, per se. I just wanted to see it. Were they basically bum fights? Did the crackheads know they were being filmed? Were they authentic crackheads, or were schizophrenics unfairly being thrown into the mix? And it was the New York edition! Does this mean there’s a Real Housewives-esque Crackheadz series covering different cities? I had a lot of questions that needed answers. The second time I saw it, I was prepared to buy it. I needed answers! Sadly, the disc had been stolen from the case…probably by a crackhead…gone wild.

2013-02-27 19.13.30

Finally, this is what I left behind in my huff. You may not be able to tell, but this was a Dolly Parton doll from the 70s. Since the aisle reset, I found myself in the middle of the doll aisle, and noticed the selection looked a bit older. When I saw the face on this one, I thought, “That looks like Dolly!” Checked my phone, and I was right. The funny thing about it is her suit was glued on to her, so you couldn’t strip her nekkid like a Barbie. Not sure if that was in her likeness contract, or if that was a modification made by the previous owner. I was set to buy her, but I was thwarted by PriceGate. So, I can only assume Dolly is at home with Juan or Maria. Yup, that’s the note I’m choosing to end on.

21st Sep2012

Thrift Justice – Operation: Time Dig Part 2

by Will

So, has everyone changed their underwear? Are you sure you’re ready to proceed? OK, so we left off with me posting some of the pics from the website promoting the sale. Now let’s get to my experience digging through TIME!

The sale was to start at 10:30, and I planned to be there as the doors opened, but familial issues prevented that. In any case, I broke the landspeed record to Ellicott City, and got there about 15 minutes after everything started. The booth is located on the 3rd floor of Taylor’s Antique Mall, yet I could hear the sound of shuffling plastic as I walked through the door. I couldn’t tell how many people were there, but I knew I’d have competition. I bounded the stairs to find about 10 people already fast at work in the giant tubs filled with everything. From the pics, I had an idea of the items I’d be looking for, but this was clearly no time for a plan. I jumped right in and started digging in a tub that wasn’t being fanboy molested at the time.

Let’s just say that the “parts sale” description was more than accurate. While you could find some figures here and there, this was Heaven for anyone looking to replace lost figure accessories or restore old Joe vehicles. Two tubs were just G.I. Joe vehicle husks, while one tub was vintage Joe figures and weapons. Everything else was a mix of MOTU parts, Marvel Legends stands, orphaned zords, and anything else you can think of. I came prepared with my own plastic bag, as I really wasn’t sure how things were being priced. The ad mentioned that everything would be “priced to sell/no eBay pricing”, so that was certainly promising. Once I saw other folks with bags, I whipped mine out and started filling it. Since I didn’t really know what the pricing would be, I got greedy. I snatched up anything that seemed semi complete, semi collectible, and, most importantly, wasn’t already claimed by someone else.

Now, here’s the part that I’m ashamed to tell you. Ya see, the original title for this saga was “How I Almost Got Super AIDS”. I guess I was so high on the discovery at hand that I lost a bit of self awareness. As I was digging through a particular tub, I noticed that my hand was wet, but I just kept digging. At one point, I pulled my hand out and noticed my finger was covered in blood. It was my blood. Honestly, I was bleeding pretty badly. At some point, while digging through 30 years of detritus, I managed to cut my finger above the cuticle, and it did not want to stop bleeding. Beside the point that I probably just contaminated the batch, I was also losing out on valuable digging time! I didn’t have a tissue or anything, and while I tried the elementary school first aid of “suck it til it stops”, I just ended up with a mouthful of blood. At that point, I remembered an old receipt that I had in my wallet. I wrapped it around the finger, and kept it moving.

The white stuff is where the receipt fused to the nail. Fun!

I struck up conversations with a few fellow diggers, A) to find out how they’d heard about the sale and B) to somewhat distract them. Yeah, I’m a stinker like that. Once I found out we were looking for different things, I actually helped them out when I ran across something on their list. One guy was looking for vintage Joes, while another had seen some Voltron in the pics and had dragged his little boy down to help him look.

I made sure to hit each tub at least twice, simply because my OCD wouldn’t allow me to leave until I was sure I hadn’t missed anything. Over the course of this time, I struck up a conversation with the booth owner, Todd. It turns out  he’d acquired all of this stuff over the years via various yard sales and whatnot. Instead of throwing away incomplete pieces, he’d just throw them in a tub. Eventually, he had several tubs and his wife wanted him to clear the space before he brought in more. He’s a really cool guy. We discussed Toy Hunter/Collection Intervention (turns out he’d seen neither), I told him about ecrater (he’s tired of eBay being a buyer’s market now), and we discussed the current offerings from LEGO. He also revealed some bad news to me: it turns out, while he was unloading the day before, a guy came up to him and bought 4 of the totes before they even made it inside. Remember all the Transformers stuff you saw in the pics from the last post? Yup, that guy bought basically all of the Transformers stuff, and who knows whatever else was in those totes. Even without the Transformers, I still found some cool stuff, that can be broken down into about six categories:

1) Power Rangers Zord Parts

I actually have a post lined up next week that goes into a bit more detail about why I got this stuff, but the long and short of it is that I tend to buy “orphaned” zords. It’s a pet project of mine to reassemble Megazords by acquiring pieces at a time, on the cheap. When it comes to earlier zords, it doesn’t get much more obscure than this. What you’re looking at it is:

-Thunder Power Turbo Transporter (Ninja Storm): It’s basically just a launching semi.
-Most of the Deluxe Centaurus Megazord (Lost Galaxy): this is one of the zords released when they started not even caring to identify the separate component zords. It debuted near the rushed end of Lost Galaxy and existed merely to be blowed up.

-fist from unknown zord

-Yellow Galactabeast (Lost Galaxy)

-Time Force Megazord micro playset (Time Force): I actually hate micro playsets, and I just grabbed this out of greed

-Senturian Synergizer (Turbo): this was the role play weapon for Ranger ally, The Blue Senturian. Yes, it was spelled that way. Don’t worry, I’m pretty sure he’s dead now.

-Head of the Red Dragon Thunderzord (MMPR season 2): this is one of those parts that was easily lost. You laugh at me now, but watch…

-Astro Megazord Shield (In Space): this is definitely going to come into play in an upcoming post!

-Galaxy Megazord Sword (Lost Galaxy): again, future post

-Firebird Thunderzord leg stand (MMPR season 20: like the Red Dragon head, it’s another easily lost part – especially since it’s removed to form the Thunder Megazord

2) Hasbro

Yeah, I know some of you are disappointed, but this is pretty much all that was left intact! If you were into restorations and picking up accessories, you’d have had a field day. I, on the other hand, just sold off all the G.I. Joe and Transformers stuff that was in my e-store, and I’m in no hurry to start any restorations at the moment. Plus, as far as my own collection, I’m over vintage and focusing mainly on the anniversary stuff. So, here’s what we have:

-OK, I kinda lied about the “not doing restoration” thing. I actually have a box of TF parts, and I recognized this gun when I grabbed it, but for the life of me, I can’t remember who it’s for. Have I ever told you that transformers are not my strong point? The research is the reason it takes me forever to list them on my site. Help me out, Bot fans!

-It looks like a Dollar General Duke, but I’m not convinced that’s what it is. I know it’s the newer body style that I collect, but since I’ve yet to actually see a DG Joe, I’m reserving judgment. What say you, internet?

-Of course you recognize vintage Deep Six! I never had him, but always wanted his immobile ass, so I fixed that. Dreams do come true!

-I honestly don’t care enough about those Transformers to insult you with incorrect info. They’re incomplete anyway. To the parts box!

3) Marvel Bases & Accessories

This pic points out something I’ve always found interesting about thrifting: one day’s finds may not actually “pay off” until down the road. I picked up a 10″ Toy Biz Silver Surfer about 2 months ago, and he’s just been sitting on my site. Besides the fact that the articulation sucks, I feel like he has sat there because I didn’t have his board. I mean, who wants Silver Surfer without his surfboard?! Well, lo and behold, while digging through this completely unrelated tub, I found the board! Not quite sure what I’m going to do with those figure bases yet…

Don’t worry – like we tell today’s youth, it gets better!

4) Playmobil

You can’t tell from the pic, but there’s a veritable shitload of Playmobil here. I have to admit that this stuff I got mainly for my site. When I see Playmobil, I hear cash registers and see dollar signs. Why is that? Well, it’s probably because Playmobil is the official toy of white upper middle-class parents who don’t want their children playing with licensed toys. “No, put down that Spider-Man and play with this shaggy-haired airport worker!” If it didn’t bring back warm memories of Kindergarten, I’d despite Playmobil much like I do anything by Melissa & Doug. Anyways, this stuff don’t come cheap, and these happened to be vintage pieces. One day, I might take better pics of the stuff, but the copyright date on most of the accessories is 1978. Also, I had no clue that Mattel was once the licensed reseller of Playmobil.

The best part of this acquisition, however, is that it allows me to show you the most racist, yet most hilarious Playmobil set I’ve ever seen:

This guy learned the hard way that you do NOT insult the loincloth of the king’s prized monkey!

5) Minicomics & Manuals

I’m a BIG fan of pack-in premiums from old toylines. I’m still collecting Kenner Action Toy Guides, so this stuff was right up my alley. Todd seemed to think these were the best items I’d found, so let’s see if you agree with him.

Yup, vintage Masters of the Universe minicomics. And yes, there are doubles, so I await your tribute.

Precursors to the Action Toy Guides, these are all Star Wars, all the time! Some of them were even woven together instead of stapled. I’m not sure if that’s how they came back then, or if they had been restored. Again, lots of duplicates.

And I couldn’t forget Hasbro, baby! In fact, I even scored a few vintage G.I. Joe blueprints amongst others below!

6) Pop Culturesplosion!

If you follow me on Instagram (and you totally should; williambrucewest), you’ve already seen a version of this picture. I needed a caption for it, so I said something like “My childhood, kicking you in the face!” Of course, the nerd police jumped on me because I have a 200x He-Man and a Sailor Moon in the pic. Haven’t you ever heard of “creative license”?! Anyway, it was really just an excuse to take a pic of everything that was left, yet didn’t really fit into one of the other categories. Yes, you see:

-Rock Lord

-James Bond Jr (who we all knew was one of Bond’s bastard children, even though they claimed he was a “nephew”)

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Krang’s walker

M.A.S.K. Raven (that should get me some Underscoopfire traffic!)

-Mego Pocket Heroes Spider-Man (it’s funny to me that most figures in this line look like they’re masturbating. You can tell me it’s unintentional, but this was a company with a hot tub in the center of its headquarters. From the stories, Mego was like something out of Caligula!)

-Sailor Moon

-200x He-Man and Battle Cat

Knight Rider Key Car (put key into spring loaded hole and launch K.I.T.T.)

Justice League lenticular S-shield (I LOVE holograms and lenticular stuff!)

Stompers-esque truck with A-Team logo

A-Team Face figure

Bravestarr Laser-Fire Backpack

-Mr T trading card

Lazer Tag sensor (sadly, seeing this in the pic on the site was the sole reason I decided to check out the sale. Post to come on all that…)

Rambo bazooka and tripod

-General Lee friction car

So, that pretty much wraps it up. I brought home a lot of crap, but I use “crap” endearingly. I was pleased as punch with what I got, as it certainly beat the junk I probably would’ve found at a yard sale. There are worse ways to spend a Saturday morning, and it’s not every day that you get a chance to go back in time and put your hands on stuff that you’ve either only seen online OR you remember your mom throwing away. Sure, I’ll be out in the streets at yard sales this weekend, but I’m sure I’ll just find the usual Rescue Heroes and broken JAKKS WWE figures. This will probably make me depressed, and make me realize I’m wasting a lot of gas. At those moments, though, I’ll think back to the time dig. There’s more stuff out there, just like this, and it’s waiting to be found. It’s not always on the surface, and sometimes you have to dig for it. I’ll be there, and next time, I’ll wear gloves!

11th Oct2011

Thrift Justice – Strapped For Cash

by Will

I’ve got a great haul from the weekend to share with you, but I’m still writing that up. In the meantime, feast your eyes on some great stuff I’ve picked up recently. Let’s jump right in, shall we?

First up, we’ve got these tabloid-sized specials, know as History of Comics Vols 1 & 2. These were created by fan favorite comic artist Jim Steranko, and they used to be advertised as mail-away items in old comics from the 70s (I guess they were also sold in book stores, but I don’t really know much about the 70s books tore scene). Anyway, from what I’ve ben able to find out, the versions I got are known as Volume 1B and Volume 2B, since they don’t have the title written on the cover. What makes this buy even more special, however, is the fact that my copy of Volume 1 is signed and numbered by renowned Italian filmmaker, Frederico Fellini. You see, he wrote the foreword to the series, as he had been a big fan of Steranko. Now, do I have a certificate of authenticity? No, but I don’t really care. If I need to, I can just take it to Gold & Silver Pawn and have Frankenstein Randy Travis do some handwriting analysis on the signature.

 

I love the Power Rangers. Now that we got that out of the way, I’ve been tracking down old morphers like it’s my job. I’m not even looking for them, but they keep popping up at thrift stores. I stopped buying most PR toys about 15 years ago (which was still too late in the minds of most people), but I used to really be into the Zords and morphers. Hands down, Power Rangers morphers were my favorite role playing toys. These used to retail anywhere from $10-15, but I’ve been finding these for roughly $1 each. Still operational and everything. To top it off, they’re models that came out after I stopped buying, so I’ve been able to restart my collections where I left off. What you see here, from left to right, is the Time Force Morpher, Ninja Storm Wind Morpher, some kinda bootleg Dino Thunder Morpher, and the Overdrive Tracker.

My love of Batman is pretty well-known. I thought I had stumbled upon something awesome with this lunch box, as the date on the decal is 1982. It certainly looked pre-Super Powers, which would place it before 1985. That said, the decal doesn’t jibe with the rest of the package. You see, the latch is incorrect. I stopped getting these lunch boxes in the very early 90s, at which point they were still using a metal latch. The latch on this one is completely plastic, placing it later in the decade. Still, aside from all that Pawn Stars babble you didn’t ask for, it was still a nice find for 99 cents!

This is Max Ray, from the 80s cartoon The Centurions. I’ve been on the lookout for these because, just like Radiohead albums, you never see them at yards sales and thrift stores. This figure was pretty incomplete, as he didn’t come with any of the accessories that fit into the holes situated all over his body. Despite all that, I’m still pretty happy to own this guy, as he always reminded me of Tony Stark.

 

I always told myself that if I ever won the lottery, I’d buy one of those replica wrestling belts that costs $300. I’d wear it to church, court, to the bathroom. Don’t care. Referred to as “The Strap” by the professionals, I’d always have it slung over my shoulder (no one ever wears it as an actual belt!). Well, I’ve yet to win the lottery, so I don’t have one of those belts. I never wanted to pay the $15 for the crappy kids version at retail, but I had no problem paying 99 cents for one! The belt that I chose was the Intercontinental Title, and I did so for a reason. You see, everybody wants to be The Champ. Everyone thinks they’re Triple H, or John Cena or The Rock. I’m honest with myself. If I joined the WWE tomorrow, I’d NEVER get a shot at the WWE Title. I could, however, get the Intercontinental belt. That was the belt you used to get for beating Goldust or The Mountie. That’s more my speed.

I hated leaving these guys behind, as I think I’m probably America’s biggest straight male boyband fan. That said, I didn’t want these at $10 apiece. I’m pretty sure they didn’t cost that much when they were originally offered by Best Buy (they were promo items), and ‘NSYNC merchandise isn’t really on the rise. So, I had to say bye bye bye to them. Yup, I just said that.

 

Thanks for tuning in, and come back on Thursday for a special Thrift Justice surprise!

08th Jul2011

Greatest Haul: Origins

by Will

In Greatest Haul: Prelude, you got a teaser of the spoils. Now, learn the fantastical origin of the treasures you merely glimpsed! I’d cap this off with a “True Believer”, but I don’t want my ass to get sued…

So, as many of my twitter followers can attest, I’ve developed a bit of a thrift store addiction as of late. We have a few really good ones in my area, so I’ve found myself swinging by a couple times a week. That said, like any gateway drug, thrift stores weren’t enough. I soon turned to Craigslist to satisfy my urges. It started out with me buying a couple of Mighty Muggs, and then it just got out of hand. Pretty soon, I found myself scouring the “toys & games” and “collectibles” categories several times a day. Eventually, I made a bigger leap: yard and garage sales.

I’ve been going to estate sales with my mom for the past 15 or so years, but they’re a different animal from yard sales. Estate sales tend to be where the stuff of old/dead folks is sold, so the selection follows accordingly. I got my golf clubs at an estate sale. I got old books at estate sales. You do not, however, tend to find toys at such places. In any case, I had come to look down on yard/garage sales, as estate sales were more “high-end”. A few of my twitter pals, however, have had quite a bit of luck with yard sales lately, and I didn’t want to be left out in the cold.

A few weeks ago I decided to wake up early that Saturday morning and get in on the yard sale action. I’d found a nearby sale that was touting “25 Years of Collectibles”. This was both intriguing and off putting. You see, when people sell what they believe to be “collectibles”, they tend to overcharge. They factor in all the time and money they put into acquiring the item, as well as what they feel it’s worth on the market. The result is typically an asking price that’s both foolish AND too rich for my blood. It was still intriguing, though, as a lot of good crap came out in the last 25 years.

Anyway, the next morning, I woke up earlier than I typically do for work (a part of me is somewhat ashamed of that), and set out on my quest. The ad said the garage door wouldn’t go up until 7, and I was there along with 2 older guys. Within 5 minutes, I knew this hadn’t been worth my time or lost sleep. He was selling loose Toy Biz Marvel figures for $10 each. Not the good Legends stuff, but the crappy Magneto with the magnet in his chest. Or a random VR Trooper. Who’s gonna pay $10 for a loose VR Trooper figure of a present-day soap star? I said my thanks, and went on my way.

Next on the list was a multifamily sale not too far away. I’d seen the listing, and I liked the idea of a multifamily sale, as I could hit several mini sales in one area. Apparently, the sales were along a block, so I could just work my way down the street. Or so I thought. Instead, I ended up spending the bulk of my time at the first house. Before we get to that, though, let’s back up a bit.

After that first “collectibles” sale was a bust, I considered going home. Sitting with my McDonald’s breakfast, I fired up my phone’s browser and decided to see if any new, more promising sales had been listed. At this point, I noticed one that touted “carded action figures”. Well, paint me green and call me Gumby! Plus, it turned out it was part of the multifamily sale that I was already planning to hit! The idea of carded action figures was too great to pass up. Little did I know how great of a find it would be.

So, it turns out that the woman hosting the sale used to work for American Entertainment. If you were collecting comics in the late 90s, then that name will be familiar to you. If you’ve never heard of it, American Entertainment was a mail order comic company that specialized in exclusive covers and products (if you’ve ever shopped at Entertainment Earth, it was a lot like that). If you have a comic from the 90s, there’s probably an AE ad in it. Eventually, they branched out into a few brick and mortar shops, but AE cranked out a TON of Image/Top Cow variants and Buffy exclusives, amongst other things. Now, since I worked at Diamond, I kinda have an idea of the sort of items that cross your desk in that industry. Just as in my situation, she didn’t sell anything while she was with the company, so she just accumulated it without really keeping track of what she had. She decided that she finally needed to clear out space, so she was getting rid of all the swag she’d acquired. And she wasn’t lying about carded figures. Buffy, Starting Lineup, Batman, WWF (yes, before they were forced to “get the F Out”), Toy Biz Marvel figures…and many were just $1-2 each! Most yard sales are just a “One man’s trash…” situation, but she actually had good stuff. It was just too much of it to try to price accordingly and sell, so it was like a collectible fire sale. I was expecting to wake up at any minute. When I call it “The Greatest Haul”, it’s not that I stumbled upon a particular holy grail – it’s that I got a lot of cool stuff for the low, low price! Toys, comics, and cards. So, what did I get? Well, you’ll just have to tune in next time!

04th Jan2010

“The best there is, the best there was, and the best there ever will be.”

by Will

“The best there is, the best there was, and the best there ever will be.”

-I’m still getting used to this whole “not having a job” thing. I think the weirdest part is when I wake up at 10:30 and think, “Oh, shit! I’m late”, and I spend a few seconds trying to think of an excuse to call in, and then I remember. I mutter an “Oh, yeah…fuck ’em!”, roll over, and go back to sleep. I could actually get used to this.

-On the country station’s morning show today, the question asked was “What invention did you think we’d have by 2010 that we don’t have yet?” Of course, the majority of callers said “flying cars”. Yes, The Jetsons lied to us, but I’m fine with it. Flying cars would be a logistical nightmare! You’d essentially need a pilot’s license, you probably wouldn’t be able to get a permit at 16, and if you think drunk driving accidents look bad now, well…

Anyway, I have a different answer to that question: based on the amount of science fiction to which I’ve been exposed, I thought we’d have trippier, more kick ass drugs, with a real high tech delivery system.

People who know me might be surprised by me saying that, since I’ve never touched a drug in my life (yeah, I’m *that* guy- the one you’re scared to smoke around ’cause you think I might narc on you). Anyway, I’ve seen shit where microchips placed on skin got people high, drug lords were huffing shit out of gas masks, there were even futuristic opium dens (it was bound to make a comeback, just like absinthe). But do we have any of this? NO! Instead, drugs went surprisingly low-tech. The biggest scourge is made in Cletus’s bathtub, and the shit makes your teeth fall out. SCIENCE FAIL!

-What a great night of televised wrestling! We got a taste of the Monday Night Wars of the late 90s, as TNA Impact was a live broadcast, going up against WWE RAW. Why were they going head to head like this? Well, Hulk Hogan debuted on TNA, with a promise to shake things up. Honestly, it just looks like he and Eric Bischoff are just gonna turn it into a tired retread of WCW. There was a parade of washed up has-beens, which was exciting for the TNA crowd. Then again, the TNA set is so cheesy, it looks like something you do while waiting for the taping of your episode of Double Dare.

WWE, however, held much more meaning for me, and probably most long-term wrestling fans. After 12 years away from the WWE, former great Bret “The Hitman” Hart made his return, looking like some drugged out old shaman woman, wanting closure for the unfortunate way that he left the company. If you’re not familiar with “The Montreal Screw Job”, wiki it, but it’s a PRETTY big deal to old school wrestling fans. This was back in the day before the “Attitude Era” and the transparency of wrestling. There was major bad blood between Bret Hart, Shawn Michaels, and WWE Chairman, Vince McMahon. Bret and Shawn made amends at the beginning of the show, capped off by the most uncomfortable bro hug you’ve seen since your big brother caught you in that gay bar last Thanksgiving! We were forced to wait until the end of the show for Bret and Vince to finally have their tete a tete. Vince broke character and really had some nice things to say about Bret. He even nominated Bret’s father for induction into the 2010 Hall of Fame class. It appeared that the Pro Wrestling Berlin Wall had finally been torn down. Vince shook Bret’s hand, raised it in victory, and they faced the four sides of the ring. to rousing applause. And just when wrestling fans across America began to wipe that tear from their eye, Vince kicked Bret in the stomach. ‘Cause that’s the kind of bastard Vince is. Look for Bret to show up regularly in the lead up to Wrestlemania. Why? Because that’s just how this stuff works. Damn, I’ve missed wrestling!

16th Jun2008

Apple Bottom Kids & My Problems With Dawson McAllister

by Will

“Good job, Tila. So you can deep throat a pickle. Then again, you probably have 3 mouths, coming from the planet Orbitron or wherever…”

Kinda scatterbrained right now, so no real cohesive thoughts. Just a bunch of random stuff I need to get out:

Dear Management of Union Jacks:
When did you convert your bar into a weekly Bat Mitzvah? I’m not complaining, as I’m kinda going through a Semitic phase right now. I just wish I’d known, as I could’ve brought a gift or something….

– I wonder how The Turtles feel, knowing there’s an entire generation that only knows their seminal hit as “The Golden Grahams Song”.

– I’ve got a friend who’s dabbling in dating sites, and he’s been keeping me abreast of the things he’s encountered. Apparently, there are a lot of fat women on there who state, outright, that they’re not interested in Black guys. Really? But that’s your biggest demographic! That’s like if I had a rice sale, but said “No Asians”…

-Speaking of “fat”, has anyone seen Kimora lately? She’s getting those front neck rolls, like Florida Evans on Good Times.

-Am I the only one who thinks the chick in the Spicy Sweet Chili Doritos commercial looks like a Ferengi?

-I just saw a 7-year-old wearing an Apple Bottoms t-shirt. First of all, how do I know she was 7? She told me – kids in a toy store tend to be quite talkative. Now, first, I was thinking it was pretty fucked up for Nelly to make an Apple Bottoms KiDs! line. Maybe he should’ve been on trial instead of R. Kelly. After some web research, though, I find there is no such clothing line. So, this unfortunate wardrobe choice was the result of some real shitty parenting on someone’s part.

-Speaking of R. Kelly, it’s amazing how many people on the street were transformed into top gun legal analysts as a result of that trial. From the nightclub to the check-cashing/carryout joint, everyone was spouting phrases like “habeus corpus” and “circumstantial evidence”. It was incredible! People who’ve never given a shit about anything judicial in their lives – we’re talking about people who didn’t even go to their own daddies’ trials! I was mega surprised when Jeff took an intense interest in it. Shit, I wouldn’t be surprised if he told me he’d signed up for the LSAT!

-Lately, I’ve come to realize the concept of “stealing a kiss” is nowhere near as cute and romantic as people like to believe. In fact, it’s pretty sad…

The Average American Male has the most depressing ending I’ve read in years. And I think every man should read it.

-I want to kick Dawson McAllister in the balls. If you’re unfamiliar with the man, he runs a pseudo-Christian radio call-in show for teens (HOT 99.5, after midnight, locally). Think of Frasier Crane’s radio show, but instead hosted by his dad – his crotchety, old retired cop of a dad. This guy is SO out of touch with his audience that I have no idea how he’s been doing this since ’91. The shit that comes out of his mouth… One girl called up, and was telling him how much she loved her boyfriend, but she was scared of getting hurt. Dawson replied, “Yeah, there’s no condom for the heart, huh?” Really?!

Then, his million dollar answer to every question is the “wait a year” response. Your dad hates your Black boyfriend? Here’s Dawson’s response: “You see, this is about respect. You love your dad, but you love your boyfriend. I say you go to your dad, and say, ‘Dad, I love and respect you. I’ll wait a year, and not see Tyquan, out of respect for you. However, in a year, I hope you’ll have thought it over, and will feel differently.'” Wanna go to Iraq and fight for your country, yet your parents don’t condone it? Here’s the Dawson response: “You see, this is about respect…” Yup, he tells him to wait a year. That’s when he even has a response. Half the time, he responds, “Man, I don’t know what to tell ya” or “What do you want from me?” How about some advice, asshole! And don’t get me started on his insensitive playlist. It’s the only place where you can hear a 15-year-old cry over her unwanted pregnancy, followed up by “Buttons” by the Pussycat Dolls…

-And now, for the part of the post that probably only Marcus and Jeff will understand: When it comes to relationships, I think I’m ready for my title shot. I’ve jobbed my entire life. I jobbed with Barry Horowitz. I jobbed with Al Snow. I even jobbed with “Hacksaw” Jim Duggan. I think I’ve paid my dues, though. I deserve my title shot. It’s my time to step into the ring with Triple H. It doesn’t mean I’ll win. Hell, I don’t expect to win, but I’ve earned my shot. I’m not even talking about a title shot at Wrestlemania or even The Royal Rumble. Shit, I’ll take No Way Out or even Backlash. When it’s all said and done, though, I don’t want to be a jobber anymore. I want my title shot, and that’s the bottom line….

And with that, folks, I leave you. Hopefully, the next post will make more sense to the casual visitor!