A Lament for My Playstation 3

640-ps3-horzI did not mean to buy my Playstation 3. Eight years ago I was perfectly happy with my Playstation 2. It had followed me from Los Angeles to Ann Arbor to East Lansing, one of the few pieces of “furniture” to follow me along on my wild adventures.

The Playstation 2 was there when I was single and when I fell in love and when I got married and it saw the birth of my first child. So, it may seem crazy to say this, but it felt a little like family. And that remote in my hand, could sometimes feel like an extension of myself.

Then on Christmas Eve my house was broken into. It was our first Christmas as a family with a baby, and we returned home to find all of the presents and electronics gone. I lost on that stolen computer a novel I was working on and a new finished screenplay.

….and I lost my Playstation 2. I cried for it as much as I cried for my writing.

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Why Dan Harmon Being Fired From Community Really, Really Bothers Me

I am a fan of Community. Let’s get that out of the way first, so I can wave my bias flag freely while trying to make one or two incredibly important points (And a few minor little tidbits)… Hell, this is a rant, really.

Community is one of the few shows on TV that can make me laugh out loud… actually, let me correct that- it is one of the few things anywhere that can make me laugh out loud at all. It surprises me, it can be unpredictable, and I cannot think of anything else like it on TV today. And for that point alone, it is refreshing and a highlight of my week.

To catch up, for those that don’t know, the creator of the series was pretty much fired from the show on Friday night, the day after the season finale. Oh, the people in power said he would still consult; but Dan Harmon, the creator, doesn’t see it that way, and vocally shared with the masses his experience being ousted (you can read his post here).

The funny thing is a lot of what I was seeing TV bloggers and the like write about the incident over this weekend (and I read them like drinking water, since I wanted someone to say what I was thinking, which they didn’t) was not about how Harmon was treated and what it says about the culture around writing and creating for TV, but more of a “Gee, will the show seem different with his departure?”

Yes, the show will be different!

What a stupid thing to ponder. Continue reading

Underwhelmed by Pottermore

Maybe it is the Ravenclaw in me, but I was expecting something with a little more creativity and inspirational zing from Pottermore.com.

Pottermore… I remember when I first heard of the Web site. What a great idea! An online experience around Hogwarts that also works as an opportunity for JK Rowling to share new insights into the world of Harry Potter. The last part is what got me the most; see, while as satisfied as I was with the end of Potter (both book and on film), a part of me still missed the universe. It had found a home in my heart next to Middle Earth and a galaxy far, far away (not the prequels), and that is quite an achievement.

Pottermore first opened for Beta testers last year. I did not work to become a beta tester because I assumed it wouldn’t be beta tested for that long. I mean, they just got done making a major announcement that stretched the entire world about the new site! You don’t do that unless you are ready to go. I mean, it is unheard of to do otherwise.

Well, surprising it is heard of! My bad.

The Beta testers “owned” the site from Fall to April of this year (while the main page kept promising its opening in a month that was long gone), as I, and most of the other Potter fans waited and waited… Continue reading