Tag Archives: Nathan Fillion

Just another day in Geek Homeschool

Standard
Howard Wolowitz

Howard Wolowitz (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Oh I do love having these conversations with my awesomely geeky daughter! I think we’re going to have to work on a script!

Me: Don’t you think it would be cool if Howard dressed up as “Moist” for Halloween?

K: That would be so cool ! They could ALL go to the comic book store dressed as Dr. Horrible characters!

Me: Ya, ’cause you know they’ve already done the Justice League stuff. Who would be Dr Horrible? Sheldon probably!

K: YA! And Penny could be …. Penny!  Who would be Captain Hammer?

Penny (The Big Bang Theory)

Penny (The Big Bang Theory) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

 

Me: Penny’s ex-boyfriend, what’s his name?

K: Zack! Ya that would be good. But who could the others be?

Me: Well, Raj could be Bad Horse!

K: LOL! Ya! He’d be all “I don’t wanna be Bad Horse! That’s as bad as Aquaman!”

K: Then Amy and Bernadette and Leonard can be the fan club!

Leonard Hofstadter

Me: You know Leonard is going to want to be Captain Hammer!

Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog

Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog (Photo credit: stevegarfield)

K: Ya! I know right! That would be so funny! And then! Then they can all go to the comic book store! And Nathan Fillion can be the guest star and he can be gaming at the Comic Book store! That would be so cool!

 

Geek Homeschool really rocks!

Nathan Fillion at the 2005 Serenity "flan...

Nathan Fillion at the 2005 Serenity “flanvention”. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

Who Would Like to See a Modern Version of “The Muppet Show”? I Know I Would!

Standard

The Muppets

The Muppet Show

The Muppet Show (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Last weekend my family sat down for some good ‘ol fashioned wholesome entertainment, we watched “The Muppets”. “The Muppets” was released in 2011 and was the first Muppet release in 12 years. As a huge fan of the Muppets and growing up waiting weekly for the “The Muppet Show” I loved this film! Not only did it bring back a lot of warm memories, but the humor and music was updated very successfully by Bret McKenzie with his very distinctive “Flight of the Conchords” sound. (My husband recognized his style immediately!) Mr. McKenzie won an academy award for his song “Man or Muppet”, which is a first for any Muppet film.

The story, written by and starring Jason Segal, centers around reuniting the gang for a telethon in order to save the old Muppet Theatre from oil tycoon Tex Richman (Chris Cooper) who wants to tear it down to drill for oil underneath. The most engaging part of the story for me however, is the idea that no matter how different things are today, Jim Henson’s wonderful creations still have a place in our hearts and COULD still have a very relevant place in the modern entertainment industry. This got me thinking. Wouldn’t it be great if Disney ACTUALLY DID bring back the Muppet Show in weekly installment? What would it look like? I actually started compiling a list of modern celebrities who would be engaging guests in a modern version of the classic. These are my 10 top favorites.

 

10. Mary Murphy (Telling Sam the Eagle that he’s a “Hot Tomale”?

 

9.  Lady Gaga (Singing with Wayne and Wanda?)

 

8.  Bret and Jermaine (Flight of the Conchords) (Jamming with Dr. Teeth )

Flight of the Conchords

Flight of the Conchords (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

7.  Jane Lynch (insulting Miss Piggy?)

 

6. Julia Louis Dreyfus(Doing an “Elaine” dance in the ballroom?)

Julia Louis-Dreyfus

Julia Louis-Dreyfus (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

5.  Jerry Seinfeld (Heckled by Waldorf and Statler?)

 

4.  Neil Patrick Harris (Giving Kermit a run for his money as host?)

 

3. Simon Cowell (Heckling from the Balcony?)

 

2.  Steve Tyler

Tyler,_Steven

(…..do I really NEED to say more?)

 

Come on Disney! You’d have celebrities lining up outside Muppet Theatre doors waiting to get their turn! In a disenchanted, cynical world like we have today, maybe we NEED more Muppets!

 

… And I bet there isn’t a Browncoat alive who wouldn’t LOVE to see:

 

1. Nathan Fillion as “Captain Tight Pants” in “Pigs in Space”!

 

An example of the Wild West influenced clothin...

An example of the Wild West influenced clothing and weaponry in Firefly and Serenity. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Now I am curious…. Any more celebrity suggestions out there?

Browncoats Rule, Prevent Bullying in School

Standard

When my daughter was three she could sing the entire “Red Dwarf” theme song. She quotes “Monty Python” skits on a regular basis, she dressed as “Firefly’s” Kaylee at our “Firefly Fundraiser” party and she thinks Abed on “Community” is the coolest guy on TV. When she was six, she didn’t want to dress as a princess for Halloween, she went as Count Olaf as played by Jim Carry in “A Series of Unfortunate Events“… eye tattoo on the ankle, side burns and everything! At ten, she has serious conversations about God and the sanctity of all life. Her social studies project this year is “How Hunger Games Could Become a Reality”. Other kids are doing their projects on dolphins and lions. Pretty cool huh? We think so. Apparently however, the kids at school do not.

My little K is ostracized, excluded and bullied because she’s “weird”. Kids are mean, we all know that. My now 14-year-old son went through very similar difficulties at the same age. He really was the proverbial square peg in the round hole. Eventually he became so severely depressed I quit my job and homeschooled him for two years. This was NOT easy let me tell you! He was angry, depressed, with extremely low self-esteem and he was just plain sick of schooling in any form. It took some real perseverance and creativity to help free him from that negative place.

When I started homeschooling it was so stressful that I needed a doctor visit to help me figure out how to cope with the situation. I explained my situation to the nurse. She sat me down and listened, then told her own story. Her son was much like mine, commit suicide when he was 13. She wished that she had the resources to quit her job and take care of him the way I was able to do so with my son. A week after my visit I discovered a letter from this nurse in my mailbox. It was a copy of a poem she’d written after her son’s death

Just Believe

Believe in yourself, you have so much to offer.

God sure knew what he was doing, when he

first opened your eyes.

He makes no mistakes. he’s got your heart in His hands, that started beating with your very first cry.

You’re an original, there’s no one in the world even like you

no matter how hard you try to be part of the crowd.

So just believe in yourself, and the rest

will surely follow. Believe in God,

He can see through those clouds.

Sometimes life can be so hard to understand.

People aren’t’ always what they seem to be.

Be proud of who you are, God will take you by the hand.

Be for real, don’t give in, just believe.

MV

That poem, printed on blue sky, cloudy paper and now faded, is still hanging from my desk beside my computer where I look at it every day.

Today my son is going on 15, he’s tall, has long blond hair in community of short haired kids and he’s comfortable enough in his own skin that he calls himself a “Brony” .”Bronies” are a fringe community of young men who are fans of the television show “My Little Pony, Friendship is Magic”. It’s true! Google it! C has the confidence to wear a girls large “My Little Pony 20% cooler” T-shirt to school and I am so proud! I firmly believe that the time I was able to spend with him homeschooling and building his esteem away from the school environment was the turning point in his life. Before this he had the fast pass to Juvie. Lets just say that the police department knew who he was and where he lived.

We are blessed. Most parents don’t have the option of quitting their jobs to pull their kids out of a toxic situation. Most parents have to send their kids on the bus every day and worry how they are getting along all day until they come home off the bus withdrawn or in tears. Most parents have to watch as their kid dissolves into a puddle of loneliness, depression, anger, and self-loathing and they don’t have the resources to pull them back out again. Bullying, ostracizing, and exclusivity kills the spirit and leads to violence that kids make either against themselves in such forms as “cutting”, and suicide, or against others with guns, knives and murder.

Last week I had the privilege to meet with Denise Gary from the organization “Kids Need to Read” program. Other Browncoats out there may recognize this as the reading charity sponsored and supported by our Big Damn Hero, Nathan Fillion. “Kids Need to Read” supplies books and reading programs to disadvantaged schools all over the U.S. One of those reading programs is called “Peace Packages” . The aim of the Peace Packages is to help our children develop problem solving skills, teach them peaceful conflict resolution, and help teach them that there are alternatives to aggression. Bullying isn’t natural behavior in children, it’s learned. If kids can be taught to be intolerant, exclusive and aggressive, then they can also be taught to be tolerant, inclusive and peaceful problem solvers.

I am an online, Amazon merchant. I started this small business as a homeschooling project with my son, but now that he’s back in the public school system I’ve decided to stick with it and build it into a “real” business. I’ve decided to donate a portion of my sales income to Kids Need to Read and I’ve specifically asked that my donations are put towards providing schools with Peace Packages. My goal is to be able to provide one peace package a month.

Also, our community has several Browncoats that like to meet at our house regularly for “Firefly” showings. I plan to discuss with them putting out a “Gorram cuss pot”. Maybe every time one of the characters swears in Chinese we can drop a quarter into the pot and donate it towards a Kids Need to Read, Peace Package. They don’t know about this idea yet, but I’m sure they will say “Shiny!”

“A Little Less Douche” Lessons from the “Daly Show”

Standard

I thought my life would seem more interesting with a musical score and a laugh track.
Bill Watterson

If there’s one thing I really enjoy, it’s people who can laugh at themselves.

The Daly show, a Web show created and written by Ben Shelton and starring Tim Daly (Private Practice) and his son, Sam Daly (Red Tails) is a satirical look at a father and son relationship within the context of living the celebrity / sex symbol lifestyle.  Not only does Tim instruct his son in the fine arts of both acting and manhood, he shows him how to do it with just a “little less douch” baggery.  And what is the result of these lessons in life? Well, in all comedic irony, MORE douche baggery!

This web show opens that window of opportunity for Tim Daly (Wings) to return to the genre in which he really shines; comedy. Sam Daly, is equally funny dealing with his eccentric father on a day to day basis, his father never fails to shock him and his perpetual look of stunned incredulity is brilliant.

The Daly Show has attracted various big name celebrity guest stars that I applaud for pokiing fun at themselves and being just “a little less douche”. These stars include: Taye Diggs, Amy Brenneman, Nathan Fillion, and most recently, Whoopie Goldberg.

Just as an aside, here is my comprehensive, yet not entirely exhaustive, list of people who could really benefit from watching and learning from the Daly’s.   Feel free to add to the list in the comments section.

 People who need to be “a little less douche.”

Rick Perry

Rick Santorum

Mitt Romney

Newt Gingrich

Rush Limbaugh

Pat Robertson

 “Maybe we need a very small nuke thrown off on Foggy Bottom to shake things up” –Pat Robertson, on nuking the State Department

Donald Trump

Geraldo Rivera

Ann Coulter

Crazy Ann Coulter

”Liberals hate America, they hate flag-wavers, they hate abortion opponents, they hate all religions except Islam, post 9/11. Even Islamic terrorists don’t hate America like liberals do. They don’t have the energy. If they had that much energy, they’d have indoor plumbing by now.”

—Ann Coulter, in her book ”Slander”

How Facebook, Bob Newhart, Twitter and Nathan Fillion helped me kick Zoloft

Standard

Life is tough.  There are times when it’s just the biggest effort to get out of bed in the morning to get the kids off to school, to  go to work,  or even just brush your teeth and make the coffee. It doesn’t matter how often you can tell yourself that your pain is nothing compared to some of the pain you see others go through every day, pain is pain and you can’t compare yours to someone else’s because if it hurts, it hurts.

Twice in my life I’ve been on Zoloft to help me function and get through the day. The first time, I was on Zoloft for two years. After a time, I felt I’d broken the cycle  and I weaned myself off. The second time a few years later, I felt myself declining and decided I needed to go back on the meds.

I spent about two more years dealing with side effects such as dizziness, ear ringing, hot flashes , night sweats, and worst of all, that general numbness. There was that horrible inability to actually FEEL anything either positive or negative.  I decided enough was enough. I wanted to be myself again and began for the second time to wean myself off.

If you’ve ever been on mood altering medication, you will understand how very difficult it is to come off this stuff.  It’s very physically addictive. It has to be done very slowly or you could end up hospitalized. I found this process even more difficult to do the second time around. Bit by bit I would cut my pill into smaller and smaller pieces. I knew I’d cut back too quickly if my ears started ringing and I had dizzy spells. That meant my blood pressure was soaring out of control and I needed to up the dose again.

For me, I realized that if I want to stay off of this toxic stuff, I would need to make some major lifestyle changes. First, I changed my diet. I’ve almost completely eliminated sugar and junk food (besides the occasional indulgence in a small piece of dark chocolate).  I make absolutely certain I get regular exercise and fresh air, I force  myself  do it whether I want to or not.  It’s a catch 22 because when you are depressed the last thing you want to do is go out and be active, but I know it helps to kick in those endorphins that make you feel good.  I also follow a semi regular spiritual routine. The Toltec Wisdom books have been an excellent resource for me. Having that feeling of connectedness to the life source is important to my sense of purpose and wellbeing.  Also, I can’t forget the support of a loving family and network of wonderful friends.  When you are depressed, again the last thing you want to do is go out and socialize. It’s an effort but I make myself go and I am always glad that I did. My friends always make me laugh and that brings me to the central point of this article.

For me, the number one thing that catapulted me out of that pit of despair was HUMOR.  Multiple studies have shown the benefits of laughter on the human body.

http://www.helpguide.org/life/humor_laughter_health.htm

http://www.chrisdunmire.com/articles/humor.depression.shtml

So much of what happens in our bodies is controlled by the brain. I won’t go into it in depth here, but a good book to research this mind / brain/ body connection is “Women’s Bodies, Women’s Wisdom” by Dr. Christine Northrup. By controlling what we THINK, we control the chemicals produced in the brain, and depression is a chemical imbalance. By controlling our thoughts, we control how we feel and that can have a very powerful influence over our health both mentally and physically. Laughter releases chemicals that helps you relax. Laughter reduces pain, increases blood to the heart, and kicks the immune system into gear.

It may sound simplistic and possibly just a little crazy, but I have to give credit to a certain you tube video that a friend posted to my Facebook page about a year ago.  It was the Mad TV Bob Newhart skit “Just Stop It”.  I know it’s just a spoof on quick therapies, but I find a certain kernel of truth in it. My depression is directly linked to a feeling of helplessness brought on by worry,  and anxiety over life situations as well as an OCD tendency to perseverate on incidences that other people would classify as “nothing”.  This skit by Bob Newhart helped me  realize that worrying and perseverating over “things that can’t be helped” or “things that happened in the past” or “things that haven’t even happened”  is not only “silly” but a waste of precious life and I decided to just “STOP IT”. Cross my heart, when I get into that downward spiral “mode” I think of Dr. Bob.

Having a good laugh, or even a low chuckle or snide titter, I’ve realized is vitally important to me in maintaining that healthy life perspective. Again, it may sound simplistic, but another thing that has helped me to maintain a good sense of humor was to sign up for a Twitter account. I only Twitter follow accounts that I find inspirational or funny.  I’d heard that John Cleese and Eddie Izzard were regular users of Twitter and I think they are two of the funniest men on the planet. Honestly though I have to say I was disappointed, Especially with Eddie. All he tweets about is places he’s visiting. (Maybe he figures he should be getting paid to be funny?) I adore his work though so I keep following him regardless. This routine here is my absolute favorite:

Another person I follow is Nathan Fillion. My favorite tweet : “At Disney’s Haunted Mansion, I let out a blood curdling scream in the parlor, and some kid always cries. Everybody wins.” Nathan Fillion

How can you possibly be depressed while watching two grown men in tights and masks banking left on a double bed? (The Daly Show)

These are some of the accounts I like to follow for inspiration or belly laughs:, Alan Tudyk, Rainn Wilson, @shitmydadsays,  @Unvirtousabbey, @thetweetofgod, @godthemother, @TinaFey, Joel McHale and Tim Daly.  Thanks all y’all for giving me my “Daly dose “of funny!

Saving Terra Nova and its Implications for Power of the People

Standard

 

I’ve been pondering again. Contemplating that discord I experience within myself between my geek like tendencies and my guilt that perhaps my interests and fascinations only add to the frivolity of our North American culture.

I Twitter follow Jason O’ Mara of the science fiction television series “Terra Nova”. “Terra Nova” has finished its first and possibly last season. It’s a great apocalyptic story of a group of settlers and military going back 85 million years in time to save the human race from its self-destruction.  While there is some violence (I don’t think you can get away from violence when there are dinosaurs involved) it’s a series which many families can enjoy together.  I know my family certainly does and considering the fact I’ve a teenage son, and preteen daughter, there are not many programs that interest all of us enough to sit down and watch them together.

Over the last several weeks, it was brought to the attention of the Twitter world by Mr. O’Mara that the Fox network is seriously considering cancelling this program. I was one of the first fans to write, and tweet Fox with regard to my opinion on this impending decision. “Don’t pull a “Firefly” with this show” I wrote, “It has the potential to become the new “Lost”.”  “Save Terra Nova” now has a petition with thousands of signatures, there is a Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/#!/SaveTerraNova  and posts in several different languages and fans all over are sending plastic dinosaurs to Fox hopefully to demonstrate to the Dark Lords of Fox the worth of this program.

A few months ago Nathan Fillion, star of the current y running hit series “Castle” and beloved by scifi fans for his portrayal of Malcolm Reynolds in Joss Whedon’s  “Firefly”, twittered an article regarding freedom of speech issue. Apparently, Professor James Miller of the University of Wisconsin-Stout was being forced to remove a poster from his door which referenced a “Firefly” quote and a picture of Nathan Fillion as Mal, who delivered the line. http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20111227/15534717208/how-firefly-fans-made-one-universitys-campus-safe-free-speech.shtml Author Neil Gaiman also alerted his Twitter followers to this violation of the First Amendment.  “Firefly”fans everywhere cried out so loudly in outrage that eventually the University had to back down. As Neil Gaiman notes (paraphrasing here), you should never upset science fiction fans who feel their favorite show has been cancelled in an untimely way.

Why? Why do we get so passionate about these programs?  Why are we so focused on these seemingly frivolous pursuits? Here in lies the crux of my internal struggle.

I can’t help but look at these incidences as examples of the power people have when they band together in a common cause.  Just think  what the world would be like if we could channel this Geek Power and apply it to environment issues,  women’s rights,  government corruption, poverty… the list goes on and on.  As my friend and UU Minister, Ellen – Cooper Davis wrote to me in an online discussion we had on this topic “What if Firefly fans worked to dismantle oppression/empire instead of for the fictional version?  What if Hunger Games fans worked to challenge injustice and exploitation instead of just obsessing over the fictional version?” What if Terra Nova fans worked just as hard to prevent environmental disaster as we do to prevent cancelation?  Could we make a difference? If we could only get as passionate about the ozone layer as we do about the cancelation of our favorite shows, yes, I think we could.  Geeks change the world, look at Jules Verne, Einstein, Gene Roddenberry… television’s first interracial kiss was on Star Trek.

Human beings are story tellers. We’ve been telling stories since our pal eolithic ancestors first began painting on cave walls. Druid story tellers were considered so powerful that it was thought they could magically curse you if they sang a story against you. Storytelling is perhaps the most important aspect of humanity to separate us from animals. Stories give us a form by which we pass our life experiences onto others, learning not only by instinct or by experience but by the knowledge of others through generations of experiences. These television programs and movies are our modern cultures’ way of sharing stories. George Lucas, Stephen Spielberg, Peter Jackson, Joss Whedon, James Cameron, and  JK Rowling  are our modern Bards, their heros are our modern  Heracles , Finn McCool, King Arthur, Achillies, Cu Culchulain, and St George.

We need to allow the power of story to work in us, and then we need to actually go out and become that change in the world. Look at what we can do when we voice with one voice! No power in the ‘verse could stop us.