blog.Drewprops.com > Category Archives: Popular Posts

Frequently visited and discussed posts.

Sarah was all of us

sarahjones

Dolly grip Tripp Pair has been handing out little stickers that say “Stop and Care” for several years now, and he’s been so very earnest about it. He has meant it with every fiber of his being and I saw him sharing #stopandcare on Facebook again this morning and was moved to write about something that’s been on my mind.

This past Thursday a young woman named Sarah Jones, a member of our local film community, died on the set of a movie shooting in south Georgia. She was hit by a train. We all hold the strong suspicion that she died due to some very bad decisions made by the people producing the film, but that suspicion has not been confirmed by criminal investigators (not yet, anyway). While the final assignment of blame is still under investigation, Atlanta crews have been mourning the loss of their friend and of a bright young woman whose lifetime of cinematic adventure ended far too soon.

So many people have written about Sarah and shared stories and photos and clippings about her. I appreciated the Continue reading

Dragon*Con Switching to Barcode

Dragon*Con Switches to Barcode! (and there was much rejoicing)

Wow! 80% of the ennui and angst and critical assessments regarding our favorite annual event just went POOF! tonight when Joseph (one of the folks mentioned in my last post) alerted everyone to the fact that Troy Bradley, Director of Dragon*Con On Site Preregistration, has made an announcement on the Dragon*Con LiveJournal Community tonight that Dragon*Con will indeed be putting on her Big Girl Panties* and stepping up to a barcode system for next year’s pre-registrations!! This is huge and indicative that that Continue reading

Is Dragon*Con Broken?

Is Dragon*Con Broken?

Updated Sept 5th, 2010 at 7:02pm – thanks to all of you who have contributed to the discussion!

It’s the Sunday morning of Dragon*Con 2010 and I’m spending my morning recuperating from having walked 5 or 6 miles around the East Coast’s fan-driven answer to Comic-Con yesterday. I woke up thinking about how much my beloved nerdfest has changed over the past five years and thought that I’d jot down some notes for later discussions with my friends who are also attending this year.

Truth is, I suppose the old girl has been changing ever since I first started going in the late 1980s, but lately it’s becoming hard to see what first made me fall in love with Dragon*Con. During a stopover at Trader Vic’s I participated in an impromptu panel called “Dragon*Con Might Just Suck” regarding how this year’s convention has been particularly lackluster. My fellow panelists Carl, Joseph and Timmy made some very good points and I’m distilling that conversation into the following five points:

  • Invasion by Non-Fans
  • Economy & Events
  • Social Networks
  • Scale
  • Age

Before I elaborate on what the ‘con has become, let me Continue reading

Scars from The Cancer Grenade

My Robotic Surgery
I made the accompanying USA Today style illustration to show the location of my scars without grossing anyone out, and to tell the story of how I decided to let a surgeon and his robot use tiny little surgical tools inside of my body.

In the fall of 2008 I went to my new primary care doctor for a physical. My PSA levels were high so we ran a round of antibiotics to see if it was an infection of some sort. After two weeks we re-tested and the levels were just as high so I went to see a urologist, who suggested that everything pointed toward the need for a biopsy. I opted to wait until after the holidays.

On January 27th of 2009 I went into the hospital for a surgical biopsy. Three days later the doctor was on the phone telling me that I had prostate cancer. Somehow I knew that I was going to get that call, but it still shocked me to my core. On the way home that night I called an old friend to tell him the news, still trying to make sense of it myself. Later, I wrote a letter to a friend living out of state as I didn’t want to Continue reading

EASY Solution for Adobe InDesign CS3 Booklet Problem

Adobe InDesign CS3Last week I finally got around to upgrading to Adobe CS3 and I love the new user interface and could go on and on about all the great improvements but unfortunately, it’s not all peaches and cream. During the production of InDesign CS3, it seems that a crucial 3rd-party plug-in called InBooklet SE was removed from the market because its maker had been purchased by Quark, Adobe’s key competitor in the document publishing market. Quark’s decision to discontinue the development of InBooklet SE was the business equivalent of kicking Adobe in the nuts.

But you came here for a way to fix your problem didn’t you?!

I’m going to give you a way to create a properly imposed PDF version of your InDesign document, without using anyone else’s plug-ins or scripts. It’s an entirely Adobe-based solution and while it doesn’t provide an editable InDesign imposition, it’s a very good solution that should benefit a good number of users. Are you ready? Continue reading

Wanted: The ElderPhone

ElderPhone Concept SketchWestern culture is driven by youth, something we all hear (and ignore) when we’re young and grow to believe (and resent) as we age. Recently, after watching my 70-something parents struggle with my Dad’s terribly tiny cellphone, I joined that group of people who are calling upon industries across the spectrum to add the over-60 demographic to your product lineups, and fast. While service industries (primarily, pharmaceuticals, healthcare providers and medical equipment suppliers) have spent several years in preparation for the golden years of an aging Baby Boomer generation, it seems that there are precious few consumer-oriented companies who have given it a second thought. Companies like OXO, who are actively looking to reinvent products for people with reduced strength and limited mobility, are few and far between. For evidence of this you need look no farther than your own cellular telephone. Do you even know how to work that thing?
Continue reading

Fresh Asphalt

Six Flags Map from the Seventies
I’ve been delving into files on my old computer lately and have been finding a few things I wanted to post to the website, this one is from the July of 2002… About a week or so ago I turned my attention to a bookcase that houses all of my most important reference books, mostly science fiction & architecture. Mixed in amongst that stuff were some unexpected treasures….like a pristine fold-out map of Six Flags Over Georgia from 1981. [Want to see a bigger version? Check out the 12MB rough photo composite I’ve uploaded to my Flickr account!]

Six Flags Map from the Seventies

What a flood of memories this thing has unleashed!

Like the smell of fresh asphalt.

If you’re ever with me when the smell of fresh asphalt is hanging in the air you should move quickly to get a glimpse of my face….my eyes will be slightly out of focus and I may be grinning. You see, when I was a kid, the smell of Fresh Asphalt meant Continue reading

1993 Honda Civic Sideview Mirror Repair

A few weeks ago the manual driver’s sideview mirror on my 1993 Honda Civic stopped working correctly and I ordered a replacement from an online store. As expected, when the mirror arrived it didn’t come with installation instructions and I couldn’t find any with a ten minute Google search so I winged it. Near the end I snapped some pictures and thought I’d stick them on the website to help others. This isn’t a super step-by-step set of instructions but I’ll bet it helps a bit. Please be sure to scroll down and read the comments section, as a reader named Bart took the time to write in with some additional tips which may speed your repair (and preclude some of my former advice). I have amended this post to reflect Bart’s suggestions, thanks Bart!
Continue reading

Cardboard Stormtroopers 2006

Box Robot Troopers
Update: Now there are videos about us on YouTube! Take a look at us in the DragonCon Parade, here’s a closer angle and here’s the news report where Alfeo and I are interviewed. Track all the new photos of our costumes on Flickr! If you’ve missed earlier posts about my cardboard robots don’t miss reading about how it all started, our 2005 box costumes, the cardboard underwear I made for a friend, and the challenge that led to this year’s hijincks.

DAY ONE
Alfeo, Elliott and I suited up in the parking garage of the downtown Atlanta Hilton on Saturday morning and headed upstairs to begin walking down to Woodruff Park. I was bitching everyone out, telling them to hurry up. That went over famously.

Exiting the elevator, I figured that the first 20 people we ran into would provide us with a good idea of how we’d be received elsewhere for the rest of the day. We were particularly worried that the “real” stormtroopers would take demonstrable umbrage at our cardboard costumes, which was never my intent.
Continue reading

Ringbox

Handmade Wooden Tolkien Ringbox
I’m occasionally asked “Are you an artist?”, to which I reply “Please double-hutch the renfro Billy, tuppence for the Lady”, which is my way of saying “yes, but a mildly eccentric one”. I have a natural distrust of artists because I know how easy it is to bullshit your way past the defensives of art-impaired civilians though it’s mostly been architects, actors and film directors I’ve ever seen pulling that stunt. So what’s this thing in the picture you’re wondering. THAT my friends, is a wooden box that I made to hold Sauron’s One Ring of Power, back in the early-1990’s before the films were a glimmer in the studios’ budgets. Did I mention that my ringbox is mechanized?
Continue reading