Archive for October, 2012

When You Wish Upon A Death Star…

Today I learned that Disney will be purchasing Lucasfilm for the sum of $4.05 billion dollars, or 4.05% of Dr. Evil’s ransom demand to not blow up the world. Upon hearing this news, the following thoughts immediately went through my head:

1) Oh please God, no!
2) Well, they bought Marvel and The Avengers was awesome so maybe this will be ok.
3) George Lucas is going to be able to build an actual Death Star in his backyard now.

I’ve been a superfan of Star Wars since 1982, when I was 2 years old. To support this claim, I offer the following evidence:

1) The first movie I can remember ever putting into a VCR myself was A New Hope.
2) I saw Return of the Jedi in the theater with my dad in it’s first release. The rancor scene scared be so badly that I was unable to watch it without fast forwarding past it for roughly 7 years after that. Ok, I’m lying. It was more like 17 years. Shut up.
3) I owned and constantly listened to The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi novelizations on vinyl records.
4) Once while playing with my Star Wars toys, I got Lando stuck somewhere in the Rancor’s esophagus. I had to make the heart breaking decision to break open the rancor to retrieve Lando because, no matter what happens, Billy D. Williams must prevail.
5) By the time I entered college, I could quote virtually every line of dialogue from the original trilogy. I also learned to keep this talent to myself, because it’s really, really annoying.
6) In 1999, before the likes of Fandango, I camped out with a group of people for 4 days at a local movie theater to buy tickets for The Phantom Menace. We had to take shifts because it was right in the middle of exam week.
7) Despite the many, many, many shortcomings of The Phantom Menace, I saw every prequel during it’s midnight launch, solely on the basis of, “maybe this one won’t suck as much.”
8) I’ve played virtually every Star Wars video game ever created, and just this past year culminated that by attending the first (and very likely the last) Star Wars: The Old Republic Guild Summit, for which I actually used 2 vacation days from work.

I could go on, but to be honest it’s becoming a bit depressing listing these things out. Somehow this because more of a confessional than I intended it to. Suffice it to say, I really like Star Wars.

In addition to the announcement that Disney will soon be wishing on stars in a galaxy far, far away, another thing I learned today is that there will, in fact, be an Star Wars Episode 7, which will be released in 2015. It’s hard to react to that, because there’s no information other than “we’re making another one” available to the public yet. Despite my apprehension, I have decided to allow Disney to continue with this course of action. However, as I have now confirmed my Star Wars superfandom, I must insist that Disney observe the following requirements when creating Star Wars: The Next Generation.

1) Obi Wan will continue to appear as a force ghost whenever he damn well pleases, and not when Luke or someone else rubs a magic lamp.
2) The London Symphony Orchestra will never be asked to play “A Whole New World,” when the Millennium Falcon enters a new planet’s atmosphere for the first time.
3) Whoever ends up being “the next Jedi,” will build their lightsaber just like every other Jedi before them. He or she will NOT pull it out of a stone with the help of some old wizard (Merlin, not Obi Wan).
4) Inhabitants of Tatooine cannot paint with all the colors of the wind. There is still only one color on Tatooine.
5) The death of Darth Vader should not be a green light to get James Earl Jones involved again. Mufasa has no place in the Star Wars Universe.
6) Should any action take place on Naboo, any visits to the Gungans will not involve a rousing chorus of “Under The Sea”
7) The songs from Snow White, particularly “High Ho!” are insensitive toward Carrie Fisher’s drug problems of the 80’s, and should be avoided.
8) No existing Disney characters should be used in any way, shape or form. Except Launchpad McQuack. He can be a part of Rogue Squadron, on the condition that he crash lands at least one X-Wing per engagement.
9) Ships will still be traveling at light speed when they enter hyperspace, and will NOT be going, “to infinity and beyond.”
10) No vehicle in the Star Wars Universe will ever, ever be voiced by Larry the Cable Guy.

So long as Disney agrees to follow these commandments, then I don’t think we’re going to have a problem. I’m a reasonable fellow (most of the time) and can definitely see that there’s room for a Disney-run Lucasfilm in this crazy mixed-up world of ours. I look forward to a future with new Star Wars films, and perhaps An Even Newer Hope than before. I wish Disney the best of luck, which they will probably need. Because so help me God, if they screw this up I will kidnap Mickey and Minnie Mouse and give them the Who Framed Roger Rabbit treatment. Just kidding. Maybe.

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On Sales Tactics And Shameless Self Promotion

Hi.

My name is Andy, and I used to write this blog on a semi-frequent basis, but became really lazy and stopped.  Then about a week ago, my friend’s little sister yelled at me for stopping and I felt guilty. Furthermore, in my last post I stated, “…I have not in fact abandoned Life in B-Flat…” which of course turned out to be a lie. If my blog was “The Sting,” then Robert Shaw would have looked right at me and said, “Not only are you a cheat, you’re a gutless cheat as well,” in an awesome Irish accent. Suffice it to say, I’ve done an incredibly lousy job of keeping up with my posts. I can’t promise not to do it again, but I’ll try to be diligent for at least the foreseeable future.

ON SALES TACTICS

Ever since one opened up the road from me, I’ve discovered that Walgreens is a hot bed of Boy Scout and Girl Scout solicitation. Don’t get me wrong, I have no problem with being accosted by sales-children, unless it’s halftime and I’m running up the road for drinks and/or snacks. I’ve even been known to partake in their wares from time to time. However, one thing I’ve always wondered is why the Boy Scouts don’t change things up a bit. From what I can tell, Boy Scout popcorn has never come close to the mighty conglomerate that is Girl Scout cookies. Have you ever wondered why that is? Both groups use the same basic sales tactics (“Hey mister, would you like to buy <insert product>”), ply their wares at the same locations (grocery stores, drug stores, and strip clubs), and have the same target audience (people who are trying to recapture their youth by fondly remembering their own tenure in Scouting). And yet, during Girl Scout season I consistently see people walking back to their cars laden with colorful boxes of sin filled goodness, while during Boy Scout season I see a table stacked high with lonely boxes of unpopped sadness. In the end, we have to face the harsh reality. The Boy Scouts have a lousy product. Their popcorn does not distinguish itself in any way, shape or form from the standard grocery store variety. Frankly, if I wanted to buy a box of overpriced popcorn, I can go inside the store and score myself some Orville Redenbacher. Meanwhile, the Girl Scouts have consistently produced a product that flies off the proverbial shelves every year. Anyone who’s ever had one knows that when you’ve got a Thin Mint in your hand,  happiness is mere seconds away. In the end, it’s all about the product. I don’t mean to pick on the Boy Scouts; I was a Boy Scout myself once upon a time. And just like today’s scouts, I couldn’t sell the popcorn either. It’s time to face the truth. The Boy Scouts either need to find a product that people want, or start adding crack cocaine to their recipe, just like the Girl Scouts do.

Tangent: Does anyone know where I can get a Thin Mint? They’re out of season right now. Are there underground Girl Scout dealers that sell cookies out of season? Can they be Googled?

ON SHAMELESS SELF PROMOTION

I can’t be sure, but I suspect one reason why I haven’t written for Life in B Flat in over month is because my job demands that I write a blog post each month for one of the corporate blogs. Clearly this rigorous writing schedule has completely drained my creativity. Because of this, I’m including the following link to the post I wrote for this month, so that I can prove that I have in fact written something in the past 30 days, and not at all because gift card rewards for the most post views are involved here.

I’m not going to lie… it may take me a while to shake off the rust, but I’ll try really hard to not lapse into silence again. I’ve got plenty to write about these days… things like football and why my beloved university can no longer play defense, new television shows I’ve started watching that are actually well written for a change, and the fact that each and every week I get beaten up by a nice German fellow who’s been dead for almost 50 years. There are good things on the road ahead, and I invite each and every one of you to come along on the magic carpet ride through my cerebral cortex. Or you can always watch Gangnam Style for the 800th time instead. That would be ok too.

P.S – Seriously, click on this link so I can win a gift card this month. Thanks.

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