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A Letter To My Daughter On Her Six-Month Birthday

Dear Marilla,

I can't believe it's already been six months since that wonderful day, 8 March 2017, when you first graced us with your presence.



Your mother and I had been awaiting your arrival for literally years.  When the doctors first told us you existed, we were absolutely ecstatic.  We didn't know much about you then; not your gender, or what you'd look like.  You just had a heartbeat and a yolk sac.  Nevertheless, we nicknamed you Thor, a strong name for a strong baby of either gender.

As we got closer to the delivery date, you decided to be a bit difficult and give mommy a bit of trouble.  But after a day and a half in the hospital, at 12:30pm six months ago today, the nurse handed you to me, and we gave you your name.



You've learned so much in your first six months of life.  After perfecting the basics like breathing and eating (not an easy start, to be sure), you started figuring out how your body works.  Your dexterity keeps increasing.  You can hold y…
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Star Wars New Canon - New Comics

As I continue to read Star Wars: The Old Republic novels for my comprehensive Legends read-through, I have been reading some comics from the new Star Wars canon, including two miniseries and two arcs of the two main ongoing series.  Specifically:
Star Wars 1-12 + Annual 1 (by Jason Aaron, 2015; Annual by Kieron Gillen)Darth Vader 1-12 (by Kieron Gillen, 2015)Princess Leia 1-5 (by Mark Waid, 2015)Lando 1-5 (by Charles Soule, 2015) Story: The main Star Wars series follows the original trilogy's main protagonists: Luke Skywalker, Han Solo, Princess Leia, Chewbacca, and the droids.  It is a short while after the destruction of the Death Star, and they are continuing their strikes against the Empire.  Meanwhile, Luke is also trying to learn more about what it is to be a Jedi, by searching for Jedi relics and finding the journal of Obi-Wan Kenobi.  We also meet new characters like Han Solo's alleged wife Sana, Hutt collector of Jedi artifacts Grakkus, and Rebel spy Eneb Ray.
The Dart…

Journey into Movies #4, 5, and 6: Amazing Spider-Man, Amélie, and Anastasia

Continuing our plan to watch every movie we own in alphabetical order, over the previous couple of weeks my wife and I watched or re-watched the following three movies:

4. Amazing Spider-Man (2012) The first superhero movie in our list is Marc Webb's Amazing Spider-Man.


As you might tell from my other posts, I'm a huge fan of comic books and superhero fiction.  While Spider-Man is not on my reading radar, I do enjoy him as a character, though my wife makes compelling arguments on how he is a menace to society.


I enjoyed Andrew Garfield in the role of Peter Parker (though not as much as the other two actors who have played him in movies).  He brings a unique charm to the character, being a more well-rounded, smart kid and less of a traditional nerd.  Emma Stone was wonderful as Gwen Stacy, and I loved Martin Sheen and Sally Field as Uncle Ben and Aunt May.  Overall, a very well cast movie.

I enjoyed how the producers tried to distance themselves from the previous batch of Spide…

X-Force and Cable: Dark stories for a dark time

Before jumping back into my chronological X-Men read-through at the first few issues of the X-23 ongoing series, I wanted to read more about Laura Kinney's activities after the events of New X-Men.  Following the Messiah CompleXcrossover, she joined the new X-Force team also featuring Wolverine, Archangel, Warpath, and occasionally Wolfsbane, Elixir, Domino, and Vanisher.
At the same time, I decided the read the post-Messiah CompleX Cable ongoing series.  Cable and X-Force both cross over at the Messiah War event midway through both series, so I thought reading both simultaneously would be a good idea. For this post, I read the following comics:  
X-Force 1-28 (by Craig Kyle and Chris Yost, 2008-2010)Cable 1-26 + King-Size Spectacular (by Duane Swierczynski, 2008-2010; final issue was retitled Deadpool and Cable)X-Men: The Times and Life of Lucas Bishop 1-3 (by Duane Swierczynski, 2009)X-Men: Hope one-shot (by Duane Swierczynski, 2010)X-Force/Cable: Messiah War one-shot (by Cra…

Early 90s X-Men Solo Minis - great one-off stories

As I prepare to read the X-Men crossover event Onslaught from the mid 1990s (after having read the Phalanx Covenant, Legion Quest, and Age of Apocalypse crossovers and most intervening issues of Uncanny X-Men, X-Men, Generation X, Excalibur, and Wolverine), I read several X-Men solo miniseries (by which I mean, comic book series that were planned to be only a few issues long, focussing on one or two individual X-Men characters) from that time period.

In this post, I'll be discussing four such miniseries:
Gambit1-4 (by Howard Mackie and Lee Weeks, 1993)Rogue1-4 (by Howard Mackie and Mike Wieringo, 1994-1995)Wolverine/Gambit: Victims1-4 (by Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale, 1995)Storm1-4 (by Warren Ellis and Terry Dodson, 1995-1996) I purchased these comics on Comixology during various 99 cent sales.  Though the Gambit and Rogue series are tightly bound, the others have little to do with each other, so I am skipping my regular "Story" segment.


Thoughts: Wolverine and Rogue have been …

Journey into Movies #1, 2 and 3: Across the Universe, Alice in Wonderland, and Almost Heroes

A few weeks ago, my wife and I were discussing what we wanted to watch that evening. A bit ambivalent about it, I told her that I had had an idea about watching every movie we owned, alphabetically. There were several movies I owned that I had not watched (some still sealed). It would be a fun way to spend nights rocking the baby to sleep.  My wife liked this idea.  There were some of my movies that she had never seen, too, and some of hers that she hadn't watched in years.

The benefits of an alphabetical order include ease of tracking, randomization on ownership, and especially variation in genre (until we get to Star, where we own 13 Star Trek movies, 9 Star Wars, Stargate, and Starship Troopers).  The first five movies on the list are a musical, a Disney cartoon, a dumb (in a good way) comedy, a superhero movie, and a romantic comedy.  This will make most movie nights different, which will be fun.

We agreed to do it. Every night we were planning on staying at home, we would pu…

Star Trek: Enterprise: The Good That Men Do: The retcon that read like a novel

Despite the ever-growing list of books and comics I want to read, I keep adding new ones to the list, as they enter my radar.

A couple of weeks ago, I was looking into Star Trek novels, and especially the novel continuations of TV series after their series finales.  I remember enjoying the continuing stories of Deep Space Nine, as well as the books leading up to the final TNG movie.  I recently began re-watching Enterprise on Netflix and thought about trying the post-finale novels for that series.

The first novel was called "The Good That Men Do", by Michael A. Martin and Andy Mangels.  This novel had a good story, but the idea behind it was beyond weird.


Story: It is almost universally acknowledged that the series finale of Enterprise, "These Are the Voyages", was bad.  Not even really an episode of Enterprise, it was Commander Riker and Counselor Troi in the middle of an episode of The Next Generation, experiencing a holodeck simulation of the final mission of Ca…