Sunday, August 29, 2010

Rubber Duckie at Bryce Canyon National Park

A few weeks ago we used the excuse of a half marathon to visit Bryce Canyon National Park. It's only about an hour's drive from our family's cabin in Southern Utah, but we haven't taken the time to go visit. I had been there myself when I was a pup, but my wife and kids hadn't ever been there. So we took a little look-see. Rubber Duckie hasn't ever been there either, so he came along for the ride.

At Bryce Canyon, as at the Grand Canyon and other Southwestern sites where you have a big dropoff, you always have people standing precariously on the edge of a thousands-foot cliff. In the case of Bryce Canyon, they mostly seemed to be European, in their California rental cars on their way around the "Grand Circle" of National Parks in Utah, Arizona, and Colorado. They seemed to be having fun, even at the 8000 foot elevation. Where's the biergarten when you need it?

From Left-to-Right: Carter, Rubber Duckie, and Miles. Rubber Duckie is in an enormous footprint which we were pretty sure was a Bigfoot, Sasquatch, Yeti, my brother-in-law, whatever.

"Back up just a little bit more...little bit more..."

Blue skies, orange rocks, a yellow duck. It doesn't get much better.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Thundercats Fisher Price Little People

Ah, the Thundercats. Technically, the Thundercats might have been some of my first homemade toys I ever made. I was old enough when Thundercats came on tv that I was past my prime in terms of getting my parents to buy toys for me, but I liked the characters and situations on the cartoon enough that I still wanted some way to play with some toys. Not having the internet or the idea to butcher Fisher Price Little People yet, I had some salt clay that I made into very rudimentary peg-like shapes that then I declared to be Lion-O, Panthro and the rest. I even made a clay Thundertank and Lair. Man. I was a mess.

That mess has continued on into the 21st Century, where the internet does exist (thank you!) and Fisher Price Little People are being butchered right and left. Soon, unmodified FPLP will be an endangered species. Keep them safe from me.

I only made characters from the first season of Thundercats--none of the ancillary characters who came along later, like "Nasty Alley Cat-O" or "Longhaired Persianina" or whatever their names were. Just the characters I knew, and I didn't make the mutant villains or those weird Ewok-Daggit-Robot-Koala things. Rober-berbles? I do have some standards. Not many.

Lion-O, Tygra, Panthro, and Cheetara

Of this set, Panthro was always my favorite character--maybe because he was the inventor, maybe because he got to drive the Thundertank, maybe because of the nunchuks. In any case, he was baaad. I tried some color shading on the toys that was moderately successful, trying to duplicate their look from the show...then again, can anyone really duplicate the beauty that is Cheetara? I don't think so. That mullety 80's hair doesn't grow itself, you know. So. Hott.

Wily-Kit, Wily-Kat, Snarf, and Mummra

Even as I was aging out of the target demographic, I didn't like Wily-Kit and Wily-Kat. I liked their gadgets--those hoverboards they had, and little smoke bombs and all--but their voices bugged the heck out of me. And I always liked decrepit nasty Mummra better than his amped-up MUMMRA THE EVERLASTING version. And then there's Snarf. A character I was born to love. I mean, it's Snarf! I have no idea what the hell he is--lizard? Gremlin? Pekingese? But his grating, cracking voice, his nannying of Lion-O, and his Smurfy Snarfing all bring me great joy. And my FPLP version of him rocks hard.

That's it. A whole Thundercats post without me making a "HOOOOO" joke.