Tuesday, March 31, 2009

surrounded by stormtroopers

last tuesday my good friend tyler phillips asked if i could video an event for him.
this event was a Q & A with the author of a book... forgive me... not just a book, but a book about star wars.

i love star wars just as much as the normal everyday person who doesn't live in their parents basement, but some people take it to the extreme.

tyler is part of the 501st legion.

what does that mean you ask?

it means he dresses up like a stormtrooper and does charity events, book signings, and what ever else a grown man may do in white plastic.

so we arrive at the event and first thing we are pointed towards the "receiving room" (insert jokes here. jokes only please.). then i witness the true nature of a fan. they share stories of the force. what rebel they are hunting at the time. what their armor is made of. very interesting... i leave the room to go look at books.
finally the time comes for me to record this earth shattering event.

tyler and the rest of the stormtroppers escort the author down to the stage.

the crowd is silent.

the sun is setting.

the ones who haven't left their parents basement in years let out a sigh of relief.

the sun no longer can burn their pasty white flesh.

the author begins to speak.

the crowd soaks up his every word.

i wonder what in the world he is talking about.

am i not a true star wars lover?

am i just a wannabe?

i allow my mind to wonder while recording.

i start to make fun of the people around me.

my friend nate is standing beside me. i look to him to laugh. i look to him to help me make fun of the "mole people", but i discover he is also a mole person. maybe not the the extreme as the rest of the crowd, but he is one of them deep down.

i feel out of place.

i feel like the black ball in a bag full of white ones.

i feel very cool.

many of you may read this and think i am being rude, but i am not.

it turns out that i really enjoyed myself.

sure there were some dorks, but who am i to judge. i read comics. i wear superhero underwear.

it was just nice to feel cool for a few hours.

below i am going to paste the article my friend tyler wrote of the 501st. that is all i am going to say about that.

Troop final roster:
Tyler - TK
Justin - TK
Tony - Clone
Darren - Boba
Cadet - TK
Deb - Officer
Mike - Jedi
???? - Rebel Trooper
Angie - Photographer
Betty - Betty
Ben - Angies handler

Early morning trip report:

I got there with a handler (Tommy) around 6:15 and by that time Justin, Cadet, and Mike (Jedi) were already suiting up in an upstairs room. Made contact with the girls runnin the show for us, super sweet ladies who laid out some simple plans.
Tony and his son got there and we started suiting up. The girls from the store brought Aaron in and introduced us. We got some books set back and went ahead and got them signed. Darren showed up about 20 mins before the event started and had a record setting time gettin into his Boba. Then we had a surprise guest show up, Deb came and asked if we needed her to suit up in her Officer, that was a dumb question. It really helped having someone who could hear and see. We also had a last minute rebel like the ones on Tantive IV show up so we had a nice set of targets.

7:05 we roll out escorting Aaron to the fountain area. There was a nice crowd gathered waiting for the Q&A and a pretty nice crowd out in the store waiting for the 501st! We were positioned behind the stage during the the Q&A. They gave us a nice intro then let Aaron talk and he even mentioned us in one of his stories. Then gave Aaron a nice easy to follow escort to his signing table, we stood guard and let him get situated then moved out to mingle with the crowd. As soon as we moved a good portion of the people around the signing area moved with us.

Lots of parents had brought there kids out to see us and they moved away from the line which actually helped people in the line move through faster. We had a good time takin picks and entertaining the kids big and small. We handed out lots of tattoos and cards, it seems like gifts will really open up shy or scared kids to the bad guys.

I think we made contact with some potential recruits and actually had one guy there acting as a handler who is interested in some of Coreys clone armor. There were some really great moments too, I had an excellent moment with a kid that was a little timid of the troopers. We played a game of "copy cat" or what ever you call it where I mocked all his actions and words and he really opened up and had fun and lost his fear of the TK's.
Tony had a great moment with a young fan that he can tell you about. Just around 9:10 we noticed that we had an extra TK who turned out to be TK-Tim who had snuck in on us.

We hung around until everyone had went through the line to get their book signed. The last person was the Pres of the KSWCC and his little kid was standin there singing the Star Wars theme it was pretty cool to hear a little voice belting out "Da Daa Dun, Da Daa Dun, Da Daaaa Dun Dun"

Then Aaron posed with us for the mandatory group shots with buckets on and off. He finished signing store stock and then I gave him a ride to TGI Fridays to eat with us. We kinda overwhelmed them with our big crowd that late but they were awesome and took great care of us. Aaron seemed to have a good time just relaxing and hanging out, he said he really appreciated what the 501st did here and everywhere. We ate, we talked, we laughed, we rolled out around 11:30. TK-Tim assisted in givin Aaron a ride downtown to his hotel. Aside from the wacky troubles that seem to follow me and him on all troops everything went like clockwork.

Excellent troop MSG, wish some of the TN guys could make it but understand that its hard to do a late troop on a weeknight.
Im sure there is more that other people want to add like (Betty and Angie gettin in trouble for talkin) and pics to come.

Tyler Phillips


Monday, March 23, 2009

spring fever

not saying that i become lazy during the winter months, but these past few days i have worked like a crazed manual labor loving man.

it all started when i ordered some shrubs (which i discovered that all shrubs are the same. you have to cut them round or square. i didn't know this until i was ready to order them).

my goal for this spring is to get the yard looking a lot better. i started by uprooting little bushes that were half dead. then i moved on to planting shrubs(20). then i had to purchase landscaping timbers (you have to make things look neat and clean. it also keeps me from running over the mulch with the lawnmower).

i drove to the local hardware store (the one i used to work at) and purchased 5 landscape timbers. the only problem is... i drive a ford focus. so fitting 5 8 foot timbers in the car was a task, but we did it. i just had to drive really slow. if i were to slam on my brakes i would have lost my windshield.

i worked feverishly on the yard. measuring, planting, shoveling, avoiding dog poop, and mulching (not sure that is a word or not).

after working all afternoon on the yard, i decided to switch gears and start working on an old desk my father had given me.

i finished striping off the paint and i actually varnished it all in one day.
i must admit the smell of varnish did get to me a time or two, but i still enjoyed working hard. now i have finished this desk from my father's childhood. as soon as the smell of the varnish goes away, i will bring it into the house and display my manly work.

this scares the poo out of me. i have always been one who claimed they were allergic to manual labor. i used to fake being sick to get out of racking leaves (which never worked. my dad said the sweat would make me feel better. it never did).

why do i now enjoy such tasks? could it be that i am going to become my father and do riley the same way he did me? am i going to trick him into sports only to end up having him hate them...oh wait... i hate sports. what if he hates comic books? what will i do then?

on a more depressing note...

brant killed a huge beetle.

it is a sad day in lee county.

OH YEAH! tomorrow i get to go to a star wars thing with tyler (he dresses like a stormtropper and is part of the 501st). this is going to be a real treat for me. i have never been in a room full of people that will make me feel better about myself unless i am at a family christian bookstore.
of course i can't make fun of tyler... he isn't that big of a nerd. he can actually carry a normal conversation about comic books.. he isn't always star wars talk...

Thursday, March 19, 2009

getting old

it is true.
my back is hurting.
my right shoulder is killing me.
i have silver hair.

what really hit home was when i received "bestlife" magazine. a magazine for aging men. articles telling me how to survive a mid-life crisis, how to handle balding, how to look ten years younger, and a few "adult situation" topics.

when did i become old?
will i stop laughing at fart jokes?
will i stop watching cartoons?
will i actually stop writing notes during church?

the questions and fears that haunt my mind (shudder).

how do you handle getting old?
should i buy a sports car?
play golf?
get a hair piece?

what do i do?

Monday, March 16, 2009

quick question

last night to save time i brushed my teeth while i peed.
angie said it was disgusting.
i thought it was a clever way to do two things at once.
what do you think?
should i be ashamed for even asking such a thing?

Thursday, March 12, 2009

his first time

tomorrow i am taking riley for his check up alone. normally angie and her mother take him since i am normally sitting in court, but tomorrow is a boys day out.
so i figure after he gets his temperature taken and weighed, we will head to my comic book store. it will be a powerful moment. i will have to fight the tears as i look into his big blue eyes and see batman's reflection. as he reaches for an action figure (toys to the layman). as all of the other comic book nerds stare and wonder how come i am not living in my mother's basement, why i wear size 33 pants, and how did i ever get married to a girl that doesn't have a tattoo of the wonder woman symbol on their right butt cheek. that is when they realize.... i am their god (lower case g). i am not bound to the rules that apply to most comic book nerds.

tomorrow will be a glorious day.

Monday, March 09, 2009

do i dare speak?

a few months ago (more like 7) i spoke at my home church about "why i don't like christians". before you start jumping to conclusions, i was included in that list of reasons why. it went over well with most people at my church, but i assumed it sealed my coffin. i would no longer be asked to preach (i have a problem with wanting to shock people).

that really didn't bother me that much. i never looked at myself as the preacher type. even though i did kind of pastor a church for a year and i still am a youth pastor, but i have never felt comfortable in the position to tell people what God's word says behind a huge wooden box.

yet, last weekend my pastor asked me to preach on sunday morning. i was shocked, but i was up to the challenge. all week long my mind tried to figure out what i would speak about. so around saturday night it finally came to me (or i thought i did). i was going to talk about "coming to terms with salvation".

i have never been a fan of the pray after me prayer and i believed there was more to my salvation than a quick prayer. i don't believe that salvation can be understood over night or within a year.

it was going to be a message showing how we grow into salvation.

now i am not saying that i was not saved when i said my prayer. i just don't believe i understood it. it was not as easily explained as i had been told in the past or as i was trained to do (many nights i would wrestle with the way things were done in the name of God while in the ministry).

sunday morning while "teaching" my sunday school class, one of the students suggested that i change the title of the message to "evolution of my faith".

speaking at a small country church and throwing the word evolution into the mix could always be considered dangerous, but i knew my church family would listen even if they didn't agree.

needless to say i was very nervous, but it went over well. i confessed my fear and questioning of the Bible. how i have a hard time with the apostle paul's writings, and struggle with coming to terms with being a father.

but when riley was born i fell in love with him and i also started to finally understand the sacrifice God made. 27 years and i still don't understand it completely, but slowly getting there.

i was also able to make fun of southland Bible institute. point out the insane ways they controlled young christians to form to their screwed up view of faith (you always need to make people laugh).
thank God i realized they were full of IT. :)

after the service some people said some really nice things to me, but the person i wanted the approval from the most loved it (angie would honestly tell me if it sucked or not, but not in those words).

on a side note:
i went to see watchmen last night in lexington with tyler and nate. awesome movie. awkward moments.

Thursday, March 05, 2009

girl scout cookies are from hell

you read that right. the girl scouts work for satan. only he could make cookies so good...yet so wrong. as i sit here and write i eat a cookie. a sweet short bread cookie.. slowly dipping it into milk. letting it slowly slip between my lips. milk runs down my chin and falls ever so lightly on my chest. oh great... now i am writing cookie porn... this cookies are baked in hell's flames.

Sunday, March 01, 2009

paintball pain

i just want to know who shot me in the butt?!?