Sunday, April 10, 2005

The Weekend in Review:

All in all, the weekend has been absolutely top drawer.

Friday my mouth finally quit hurting and I managed to eat some oatmeal. Saturday I woke up and the pain was more or less gone. I'm kind of oddly sensitive in the mouth, but nothing too bad.

Last night we went to see the Phoenix Suns play the Houston Rockets at America West Arena. I love going to NBA games, even if I am not following the team. This year I've been following the Suns as closely as possible, and so I was very excited. Or would have been if the Suns hadn't lost to the Warriors the evening before. The League knows a bad omen when he sees one.

Amare goes up against the mighty Yao. Yao rode the bench most of the game after getting four quick fouls. Suns STILL lost.

It should be noted that all NBA games have a wild array of entertainment in addition to the game. At each TV time out, the Suns produce a dude in a gorilla suit who does various tricks, rolls around on a $60,000 motorcycle, and occasionally performs stunts, a la The Houston Rockets' former mascot, Turbo.

The Suns Gorilla has been genetically engineered to have sneakers for feet.

We also had the surgically enhanced Suns Dancers, the dude who played Shaggy in Scooby Doo, and the chubby guy from Kangaroo Jack (who, I think, is out on bail pending a sexual assault charge. Go figure.).

I had left during the second quarter to get my pretzel, dog and diet coke, and so during half-time I was available for the entertainment provided by Casino Arizona's Showstoppers Live! The program at the Casino is comprised, I believe, entirely of celebrity impersonators. They used to push their Michael Jackson impersonator, but I'm guessing that guy is less popular these days. Now they're pushing Blonde Ambition-era Madonna and some dudes pretending to be "The Blues Brothers."

It was "The Blues Brothers" who took center court on Saturday night, and, I admit, stole a small part of my soul. Whatever it was that made Belushi and Aykroyd really work as the Blues Brothers wasn't present at America West Arena. Nor was any semblance of singing talent. I will admit that these guys did a fairly good job of impersonating the speedball driven dancing of Belushi and Aykroyd, but, in no way, did they approximate the singing or vocals which have had 25 years to seep into the popular consciousness.

We had fairly terrible seats, being, literally, in the top row of the arena, but even from there, one had to wonder... At what point in your singing career to you go ahead and not only audition to be a stand in for Dan Aykroyd, but decide that this is what you are going to do every night of your life? Seriously, at least the seals at Sea World have an excuse for doing the same junk every performance. They get a fresh smelt.

But, hey, the show was free with the price of admission. And we didn't feel compelled to turn to a novel the way the 16 year old girl down the way from us chose to do during the entire length of the game.

Nonetheless, it was a good game, and despite my smack talk, the Rockets did, in fact, win. Luckily it was a tight game, and if the Suns had been a little more on, they literally could have taken the game with six seconds left to go. Ah, well. I think I owe Randy a small display of humility. MacGrady is as good as advertised. Rockets will be a tough contender for anyone they face during the play-offs.

We got up this morning, scrubbed our faces and rolled to the Phoenix "Cactus ComicCon." I hadn't been to a comic convention in many, many years. And I don't really know how to describe it if you haven't been to a convention.

Here's a general idea, though. We sort of parked in the wrong area and were walking aimlessly around downtown Glendale, trying to pick out the Convention Center, when Jamie said, "Oh, look. It must be over there by all of the Storm Troopers."

Yes. It must.

In the 80's there were always paunchy dudes in Trek shirts and Vulcan ears wandering around. These days, it's always dudes in $1000 suits of Star Wars Armor. And 1 dude dressed as Darth Maul, one dude dressed as Vader, and, we got a Qui-Gon. Hooray!

The teens love manga, Leaguers, and based upon the teen age girls running about in animal ears, kimonos and carrying swords, nobody is going to care about super heroes anymore in fifteen years. True, there was a baby Captain America, and a lot of kids were there getting ruined for girls by their overzealous comic-geek dads. I would guess the median age of attendees was probably skewing closer to 27. Lots of dudes.

I did spend some money at the convention. I picked up a lot of comics for about $1, including Captain Carrot and his Amazing Zoo Crew #1.

It was a nice convention, but I didn't come prepared for the celebrity guests (Marv Wolfman was there, and me, with none of my Teen Titans comics!), and I was having a very hard time locating vintage Superman comics.

Seeing grown adults in super hero costumes is always a sort of odd experience. Part of you wants to cheer them on, and part of you wants to give them a swirly. I always wonder exactly what made them put down the character t-shirt and say to themselves, "I may be tubby, have a beard and glasses, but TODAY... TODAY I SHALL BE CAPTAIN AMERICA!!!! WOMAN, GET ME A GARBAGE CAN LID AND SPRAY PAINT!!!!"

These are my peeps. I get to make fun.

Anyhoo, it's been a good weekend. Hope ya'll had a good one, too.

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