Random

Random

My wife and I were driving home from Nolan’s soccer game this morning.
Let me pause here and say how much I love getting up at 6AM on a Saturday, so I can go sit in wet grass and watch overachiever parents scream at their terrified 10 year olds that they’re doing everything wrong. Oh, and I especially love when the assistant coach of the freaking team gets so pissed at the kids for making a mistake that he takes off his hat, throws it to the ground, and stomps on it. For reals. And if that wasn’t enough, when one of the kids missed a fairly easy goal (maybe he was distracred by his father screaming at him to “Kick it, Brandon! Kick it! KICK THE DAMN BALL!”), he actually dropped to the ground in a ball, and pounded his fists against the ground, like Kirk in Wrath of Khan.
Fortunately, Nolan is a phenomenal soccer player, and he doesn’t get yelled at by any of his parents, or the head coach, who happens to be his dad.
But my favorite is the guy who can’t even sit down, beacuse he’s pacing the whole time, screaming at his kid, “David! Get back! NO! Get up! NO! Cover your guy! NUMBER 4 DAVID! COVER NUMBER 4! NO! Don’t look at me!!! NOOOO!!!” Pace. Pace. Smoke. Smoke.
Running a close second is the guy who yelled at his kid, “Alberto! Alberto! You just cost your team a goal! What did we talk about?! WHAT DID WE TALK ABOUT?!”
I have two pieces of advice for those parents:
1) Get a life. They’re 10. It’s not that important.
2) For the benefit of the kids, and all the parents around you, please stay the fuck away from the field, okay? Drop your future Maradona off, go home, and come back when the game is over.
Read the AYSO guide of conduct, recently, guys? I didn’t think so.
What a tool.
Anyway, I’m on the way home with Anne, and this really wussy song comes on the radio, and she says, “Is this The Crash Test Dummies?” (One of the wussiest bands in history, for those of you scoring at home)
“No, it’s Metallica.” I told her.
So if any of you were wondering if Metallica has completey lost it, there you are. I can’t believe that the guys who croak out “Until It Sleeps” are the same guys who gave me whiplash in 95 listening to “Damage Incorporated” and “Master of Puppets”
“Napster bad!”
So are formerly cool metal bands who wuss out.
A change of pace?
Am I the only person who is at once really tired of, yet unable to pull myself away from, the wall to wall converage of the WTC bombing? Apparently not.
But KCBS Channel 2 here in LA has finally stopped running their coverage (I am convinced now that Dan Rather is not a person, but a very complex robot who can stay awake for hundreds of hours in a row. That or he’s a series of clever clones, like in that Droopy cartoon).
The only thing is, they’ve replaced the constant replays of horror and suffering and destruction with…a marathon of Judge Judy.
What?
Belly Buttons
I think that there are few things in this world that are sexier than a flat tummy, in one of those midriff shirts, with a subtle piercing and NO FUCKING WAIST BRACELET. Waist bracelets belong one place, and one place only, and that is on strippers. So if you’re not a stripper, please, please, puh-leeeze. Just say no. You’ll be glad you did.
Anyway, I turn on something like VH1 or something, and they’re playing that Levi’s commercial, where the belly buttons are singing, “I’m coming out”. You know the one. Does that give anyone else the creeps? Somehow, they made those belly buttons look the opposite of sexy. They made them scary. I mean, they made them clown scary.
Clown scary, Chet. Clown scary.

Please Read

Please Read

This is making its way all around, and, sadly, I don’t think the people who really need to read it are capable of that. But, please read it, if you haven’t already, and spend a moment to reflect. It comes to me from Loren.

“I’ve been hearing a lot of talk about “bombing Afghanistan back to the Stone Age.” Ronn Owens, on KGO Talk Radio today, allowed that this would mean killing innocent people, people who had nothing to do with this atrocity, but “we’re at war, we have to accept collateral damage. What else can we do?” Minutes later I heard some TV pundit discussing whether we “have the belly to do what must be done.”
And I thought about the issues being raised especially hard because I am from Afghanistan, and even though I’ve lived here for 35 years I’ve never lost track of what’s going on there. So I want to tell anyone who will listen how it all looks from where I’m standing.
I speak as one who hates the Taliban and Osama Bin Laden. There is no doubt in my mind that these people were responsible for the atrocity in New York. I agree that something must be done about those monsters.
But the Taliban and Ben Laden are not Afghanistan. They’re not even the government of Afghanistan. The Taliban are a cult of ignorant psychotics who took over Afghanistan in 1997. Bin Laden is a political criminal with a plan. When you think Taliban, think Nazis. When you think Bin Laden, think Hitler. And when you think “the people of Afghanistan” think “the Jews in the concentration camps.” It’s not only that the Afghan people had nothing to do with this atrocity. They were the first victims of the perpetrators. They would exult if someone would come in there, take out the Taliban and clear out the rats nest of international thugs holed up in their country.
Some say, why don’t the Afghans rise up and overthrow the Taliban? The answer is, they’re starved, exhausted, hurt, incapacitated, suffering.
A few years ago, the United Nations estimated that there are 500,000 disabled orphans in Afghanistan–a country with no economy, no food.
There are millions of widows. And the Taliban has been burying thesewidows alive in mass graves. The soil is littered with land mines, the farms were all destroyed by the Soviets. These are a few of the reasons why the Afghan people have not overthrown the Taliban.
We come now to the question of bombing Afghanistan back to the Stone Age. Trouble is, that’s been done. The Soviets took care of it already.
Make the Afghans suffer? They’re already suffering. Level their houses? Done. Turn their schools into piles of rubble? Done. Eradicate their hospitals? Done. Destroy their infrastructure? Cut them off from medicine and health care? Too late. Someone already did all that.
New bombs would only stir the rubble of earlier bombs. Would they at least get the Taliban? Not likely. In today’s Afghanistan, only the Taliban eat, only they have the means to move around. They’d slip away and hide. Maybe the bombs would get some of those disabled orphans, they don’t move too fast, they don’t even have wheelchairs. But flying over Kabul and dropping bombs wouldn’t really be a strike against the criminals who did this horrific thing. Actually it would only be making common cause with the Taliban–by raping once again the people they’ve been raping all this time
So what else is there? What can be done, then? Let me now speak with true fear and trembling. The only way to get Bin Laden is to go in there with ground troops. When people speak of “having the belly to do what needs to be done” they’re thinking in terms of having the belly to kill as many as needed. Having the belly to overcome any moral qualms about killing innocent people. Let’s pull our heads out of the sand. What’s actually on the table is Americans dying. And not just because some Americans would die fighting their way through Afghanistan to Bin Laden’s hideout. It’s much bigger than that folks. Because to get any troops to Afghanistan, we’d have to go through Pakistan. Would they let us? Not likely. The conquest of Pakistan would have to be first. Will other Muslim nations just stand by? You see where I’m going. We’re flirting with a world war between Islam and the West.
And guess what: that’s Bin Laden’s program. That’s exactly what he wants. That’s why he did this. Read his speeches and statements. It’s all right there. He really believes Islam would beat the west. It might seem ridiculous, but he figures if he can polarize the world into Islam and the West, he’s got a billion soldiers. If the west wreaks a holocaust in those lands, that’s a billion people with nothing left to lose, that’s even better from Bin Laden’s point of view. He’s probably wrong, in the end the west would win, whatever that would mean, but the war would last for years and millions would die, not just theirs but ours. Who has the belly for that? Bin Laden does. Anyone else?”
-Tamim Amsary

Fuck You, Falwell, and Robertson Can Kiss My Ass

Fuck You, Falwell, and Robertson Can Kiss My Ass

Via Plastic.com via the Washington Post:

Television evangelists Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson, two of the most prominent voices of the religious right, said liberal civil liberties groups, feminists, homosexuals and abortion rights supporters bear partial responsibility for Tuesday’s terrorist attacks because their actions have turned God’s anger against America.

SpongeBob Vega$ Pants

SpongeBob Vega$ Pants

Vega$ baby! Vega$!
It’s the battle cry often heard coming from our car as my wife and I tear up I 15, making the 4 hours drive in 3 and a half. I mean, driving to Vega$ is half the fun. The excitement, the boredom, the constant, “Are we there yet?” Answered by, “Yes, just around this corner,” or “We passed it. I have to turn around.”
The stop at Barstow for In-N-Out Burgers, and slowing down past the Bunboy to see how hot it is at “the world’s tallest thermometer“. Reading every single billboard, announcing that the Stardust has ROOMS AVAILABLE TONIGHT! And Circus Circus has FREE CIRCUS ACTS EVERY HOUR!
The drive is usually as much fun, if not more fun, than the time we spend in Vega$.
I bring this up, because the last two times we’ve gone there, we’ve flown (because we weren’t paying for it), and flying to Vega$ just sucks. I mean, where is The Mad Greek? Where is Lake Delores? And you know what? You can’t listen to Joshua Tree on the way, when you’re in a plane. The flight isn’t long enough, and you look lame when tears roll down your face while listening to “Running To Stand Still” on an plane. In a car it’s okay, but not on a plane. I don’t know why, it’s just one of those things that we’ll never understand. Like overalls on adults, or George Bush in the White House.
So I’m gonna give you all the stories from Vega$, including the Con and stuff. The plan right now is to split them up over a few days, because I’m so damn long-winded, but we’ll see where we are in a little bit.
Here goes.
The Flight
We went out on Southwest Airlines from Burbank. I love flying Southwest for less than an hour. It’s easy, it’s cheap, and the flight attendants out here are always really friendly and funny. Friendly and funny goes a LONG way with me, FYI.
We were scheduled to go out at 3:50 PM, meaning that we’d need to get to the airport around 3, which means we leave our house at 2:15 or so.
So it’s 3:15 and we’re walking out the door…and somehow we get to the airport on time.
You know how southwest gives you those boarding cards? I got number 42!! YES! Check out what a dork I am. I was so excited, because, you know…
So the flight was nice and bumpy, which is my favorite. OH! LeVar Burton was on the plane with us, and when we landed in Vega$, Anne and I ran, and I mean, ran into the bathrooms, and LeVar comes walking over to me, and tells me, “W W, [he always calls me that, which I think is cool] when you showed me that picture of your wife in South Pasadena [when we were at the TCAs for TNG on TNN -nice use of acronyms, Wil], you did not do her justice.” Dramatic pause. “Wil Wheaton, your wife is a fox!”
So I’ve got that going for me, which is nice.
So we get a ride to our hotel, which is The Bellagio (again, because we’re not paying for it. I am *so* not into the pretentious BS. The whole time we were there, I felt like I was playing dress up). We check in, and now we have exactly 30 minutes to get changed, and all that before my sketch comedy group meets us for a quick dinner and rehearsal.
Let me talk for a minute about my sketch comedy group.
I am a member of the ACME comedy theatre in Hollywood. The ACME is one of the best comedy theatres, ever, and it’s one of the few achievements I’ve made that I am extremely proud of. I love the ACME. Matter of fact, I’ll be teaching at our school very soon. So if you’re in Los Angeles, and want to learn how to give up the funny, you should call us. You’ll be glad you did! Alright. Enough gushing.
From this exceptional company,I chose some of the best improvisers/writers/performers I could find. Because I chose the best, they were all working on their various projects and things, and it was EXTREMELY hard to set up a rehearsal schedule that everyone could commit to. So we’re doing a show with 10 sketches, most of which we’ve never done as a group before, and we’ve never really had a full rehearsal until the night before we’re supposed to perform. Holy shit. I am freaking out, because I am a perfectionist, and I feel like these Trekkies have all paid lots of money to see our show (which sold out! Yes!), and I want to give them a really good one. One that they’ll remember. It also doesn’t help that I’m feeling like I have to win these people over (which is how I feel every time I go to one of these conventions) and prove to them that I can do something other than re-align the warp core or whatever.
So it’s 5:30PM on Wednesday, and we’re meeting at 6PM in the lobby to eat before we get rehearse in our hotel room. It’s 6:15, and Kevin still isn’t there, and I am freaking out. I am pacing in the lobby, pulling at my hair, and all that stuff. And I’m cursing Kevin’s name, until he shows up at 6:20. Well, it turns out that I had forgotten to tell him what time we were meeting. My bad.
4:32 PM PDT:
There’s more to come very soon, but I just remembered that there is a blood drive and fundraiser as the Rose Bowl, and I want to get there before it’s over.
6:00 PM PDT:
I just got back home. I gave money to the Fireman’s fund, and the Red Cross. I felt good about doing that, but the jingoistic attitude that pervaded the whole area really bothered me. Especially in light of this and this. I think this may cost me some readers, and maybe get me some hate mail, but I have to say it: the attitude for vengence and revenge that seems palpable everywhere I go really scares me. I’d rather feel a demand for justice.
Anyway, back to our regularly scheduled programming:
Kevin finally shows up, and we decide to go to the buffet. But when we get there, we notice that it’s $24.95. Holy shit. Question: does anyone ever really get their money’s worth at a buffet? I don’t ever feel like I do. And I always end up combining foods that I really shouldn’t combine. Like shrimp and chocolate cake, or miso soup and some alfredo pasta (back in the pre-lactose intolerant days). So I suggest that maybe $24.95 is too much for a bunch of us starving actors (hey, I haven’t found my pennies yet) to pay, and maybe we should go to the Cafe instead. So we shlep all the way across the damn casino to the Cafe.
Tangent: When you go to Vega$, have you ever noticed that everything is through the casino? I mean, I bet if you go to the hospital in Vega$, you have to go through a bank of slot machines to get to the ER. You have to go through a casino to get to the casino. Bastards.
So we go to the cafe, and because it’s the Bellagio, everything costs so damn much that it would have been cheaper for us all to eat at the Buffet. So there was much shit given to your old pal Wil, and we had to eat Sir Robin’s Minstrels. And there was much rejoicing.
Yaaay.
After dinner, we headed upstairs and finally ran our whole show. I had made a very big deal to everyone about how important it was to know all of their lines, so they could work on character tweaks, instead of memorizing lines. And everyone stepped up. They all knew their lines, they all knew their characters, and it was great. All except one person, who couldn’t remember his lines for shit.
Me.
Oh, how awful I felt. How embarassed I was. But it happens sometimes to me. It used to happen back on Trek. When I would have a really important scene, ususally one with Patrick, and I wanted to do really well, and impress everyone. I would just get a brain freeze, and even know I knew that I knew the lines, they wouldn’t come. Like “I know that joke, but I forgot it” times a million.
So I was still pretty freaked, but we got through it, and I did get the lines down, mostly, enough so I felt like we could all go out and have a drink and do a little gambling.
It was decided that we’d all head back to our respective hotels, and meet at Cleopatra’s Barge at Caesar’s Palace in something like a half-hour.
So here’s the deal: This place, Cleopatra’s Barge…I felt like I’d walked into someone else’s mid-life crisis. Someone please explain to me why all the cover bands play “Brick House”? And someone else explain to me why they can never get the words right? Oh! And here’s a newsflash for you: Creed sucks. Playing bad covers of Creed songs sucks even more. So just stop the insanity!
We sat at this place for the prescribed half-hour, and as soon as everyone else was there, we bailed out, and fast. Cleopatra’s Barge was more like the Titanic. We did a teeny little bit of gambling, and Tracy won 40 bucks in quarters, which was cool.
We ended up across the street at The Barbary Coast, where the dealers were cool, I won some money on Craps (my favorite game, for those of you scoring at home), and Anne won some money at the Wheel of Fortune slot machines. We went into the Coffee Shop, and had REASONABLY PRICED steak and eggs, with a side of extra-well done hasbrowns, thankyouverymuch, and that was it. We went in about 3 AM, which isn’t bad, Vega$-time, because I had looked at the schedule for the con the next day, and I wasn’t on until 5PM. Cool. Time to sleep in.
Morning. 8AM. I’ve been asleep for 5 hours. Phone rings. It’s Jackie Scott, one of the convention promoters. She says, “We need you here at 10 for an autograph signing. Do you want to be picked up at 9:30, or do you want to take a cab?”
“Mrphhzzzzgggggthphbbt” was all I could muster.
[NEXT:]
DAY ONE AT THE CON:
AUTOGRAPHS!
MY ON STAGE TALK!
THE SKETCH SHOW!
And…
Let the rudeness begin!

Button, button, who’s got the button?

Button, button, who’s got the button?

Check out this cool button that was made for me by MizRedHead:
WIL WHEATON DOT NET
And check out this one, made by Steve Albright:
WIL WHEATON DOT NET
If you’d like to make a button, I think that’d be cool, because these are already cooler than anything I could have com up with. If you want to, it should be a .gif file, no larger than 3K, and no bigger than 35×100. email it to me, and I’ll post the ones I think are the coolest, along with the aforementioned hellamadprops.

He didn’t know what to do. But he’d think of something.

He didn’t know what to do. But he’d think of something.

I wasn’t going to talk about this, because it’s all anyone is talking about. I mean, I turn on TLC to get away from it, and they’re just running a feed of FOX News. Same for Discovery. Even ESPN has a ticker with updates scrolling across the bottom of the screen.
So since I can’t get away from it, I give in. I will write about it. Because I am scared. I am distraught. I am upset. I am depressed. I am angry. Mostly, I don’t know what to do, and I’m not quite sure how to feel. It reminds me of when my friend hung himself. How helpless I felt, how angry, sad, scared, etc.
But the thing that really pushed me over the edge, the thing that made me sit down here tonight, was when I took Ryan to the mall tonight to buy a book for his book report. On the way he asked me if our local mall was popular. I looked in the rearview mirror, and told him that it was. Lots of people go there. He looked back at me, and asked me, “does that mean they’re going to bomb our mall?”
So I spent the next hour explaining to him what had happened, and why (as best as I understand it, which is not very).
And I don’t have much to say, really. I just know that when my dad got sick, I wrote about it and felt better. And when I got the shaft on the movie, I wrote about it, and I felt better, and when the bastards came for me, I wrote about it and I felt better.
And I really do want to tell all about Vega$ and the convention, but I can’t, until I get this out of me. So here goes:
My wife woke me up Tuesday, much earlier than we normally get up, because my mom had called, and told her about the attack on the WTC. So sat up, turned on the TV, and watched in horror as that plane crashed into the tower, over and over and over and over.
I felt like I was watching a bad Steven Segal movie. I mean, this just doesn’t happen in real life, right?
Anyway, I’m not gonna rehash the whole thing, because we’ve all been doing that, and I don’t want to turn into what the news networks are all doing: just saying the same thing, over an dover, with a different pundit to agree with them.
But here’s the deal: I can’t cry. I really want to. I feel it well up in my chest, but the tears won’t come. And that is the hardest thing, so far. That and the fear.
I was walking Ferris last night, and I kept getting this completely irrational fear that something awful was going to happen while I was away from the house. Didn’t help that she kept stopping, and looking behind us, like there was something there.
I am supposed to travel at the end of the month to the east coast for another Star Trek Convention, and I really don’t want to go now. At all. I know that is totally irrational, and totally lame, and exactly what the terrorists want, but I keep imagining what those people on those planes were feeling, knowing that they were going to die. I wonder what I would do if that ever happened to me…?
So, here I find myself at an uncommon loss for words. I don’t think I really have much to add, so that’s it for tonight.
Hrm. Worst. Entry. Ever.

Barlow

Barlow

This comes from John Perry Barlow, via Loren, via Scripting.com:

As most of you know, I believe that the United States has gradually, subtly, invisibly to most of us, become a police state over the last 30 years.
This morning’s events are roughly equivalent to the Reichstag fire that provided the social opportunity for the Nazi take-over of Germany.
I am *not* suggesting that, like the Nazis, the authoritarian forces in America actually had a direct role in perpetrating this mind-blistering tragedy. (Though their indirect role deserves a much longer discussion.)
Nevertheless, nothing could serve those who believe that American “safety” is more important than American liberty better than something like this. Control freaks will dine on this day for the
rest of our lives.
Within a few hours, we will see beginning the most vigorous efforts to end what remains of freedom in America. Those of who are willing to sacrifice a little – largely illusory – safety in order to maintain our faith in the original ideals of America will have to fight for those ideals just as vigorously.
I beg you to begin NOW to do whatever you can – whether writing your public officials, joining the ACLU or EFF, taking to the streets, or living visibly free and fearless lives – to prevent the spasm of
control mania from destroying the dreams that far more have died for over the last two hundred twenty five years than died this morning.
Don’t let the terrorists or (their natural allies) the fascists win. Remember that the goal of terrorism is to create increasingly paralytic totalitarianism in the government it attacks. Don’t give them the satisfaction.
Fear nothing. Live free.
And, please, let us try to forgive those who have committed these appalling crimes. If we hate them, we will become them.
May God – or Whatever you want to call It – bless us all. We’ll need it.
Barlow

The World Has Turned

The World Has Turned

It’s all anyone is talking about, so I’m not going to say much beyond this:
The World Has Turned, and I don’t know what tomorrow will bring. I have this feeling that things will never be the same.
Here’s my number one fear: I fear that Bush (who disgusts me, so just know that, and save your flames for someone who cares) will see this as an opportunity to look “Presidential”, and bomb “Them” back to the stone age, and figure out who “They” are later. Sure, I think that we should find out who did this, and deal with them…but I fear the way it’s going to be handled.
Loren makes a great point: there is all this talk about how our intelligence missed this, and whatnot. I greatly fear the laws that are going to come out of this thing. I am really afraid of what’s going to happen to our privacy because of this. Just something to think about, while we all try to process this stuff.
This site seems to have a good timeline, if you’re interested, and Slashdot has a good discussion going. I suggest listening very carefully to what you hear on the news, especially as there is less new info to report, and the carefully coiffed anchors begin speculating and exploiting, in an effort to hold your attention. I suggest reading IndyMedia and CommonDreams, as good alternative sources of information, free of spin and agenda.
In the mean time, please go and give blood. Especially if you’re O-. I know that the thing I feel the most right now is helpless, and giving blood is something, however small, that we can do to help out, and maybe not feel so helpless.
Okay, I’ve said enough, which is more than I wanted to in the first place. I have cool Vega$ stories to tell, but I just don’t feel like telling them today. Maybe tomorrow.

Viva Las Vega$ (Sort of)

Viva Las Vega$ (sort of)

Hey hey!
I am back from Vega$, and one of the coolest conventions, ever! Here’s the deal (or the dilly-o, as the damn kids today say. But since I am so not cool, I won’t say that. Ever.)
Okay, so here’s the deal: I have 5 days worth of cool stories to tell, but I am ex-freaking-hausted now, and my back is completely fucked from signing close to 7500 autographs, so sitting here typing is extremely painful, so that’s about it for this entry.
But boy do I have stuff to tell:
The Server Hack
Vega$ (Gambling, losing, losing some more, winning, giving it back, and the rudeness. Oh, the rudness)
The Con: My talk (they hate me! they like me! they hate me! they like me!) My sketch show: (One of the best sketch shows I’ve ever done, and, apparently, the highlight of the convention, according to some fans) The Star Trek Experience (seriously. one of the coolest things I’ve ever seen.)
I have much to say, and I have gone back and forth today, deciding if I’m going to write this stupid little “I’m back” thing (which is extremely lame, I think), or just wait until tomorrow and tell all the stories. But I think I wanted my closest friends to know that I was back, and alive.
Tomorrow is a wasteland.

I Heart Script Kiddies

I heart script kiddies

“Hey, Wil! Where’s your burrito?” was the subject of an Email I got today…well, my burrito was haxxored.
But thanks to the efforts of the greatest webhosts, EVER, Josh and Loren, I think we’re back on track, now. Josh spent the day on a plane, got home, and helped get the servers back together. Loren spent his entire day off getting the servers back up, and restoring all the sites.
I think now is as good a time as any to give a little history on how this lame site came about…
Last year, at comic-con, I met this really cool guy named Ben. Ben is an artist, and had drawn some of the coolest little comic books I have ever seen.
Fast forward to about 2 months before comic-con. I am spending quite a bit of time playing Diablo 2, and surfing the net. One Saturday, while my wife is out of town, I decide to spend the entire day at the computer, and you know what that means…no, not that…I decided to spend the day making a website.
I have wanted a presence on the web for a long time, but I just never got around to it. I was offered, many times, the help of professional designers, but I wanted to do the whole thing myself, for better or for worse. I didn’t want this to be just another lame celebrity website. I wanted to have a website that looked more like one of your friend’s sites, and less like some Big Hollywood Jackass. But I’m getting ahead of myself. I need to back up to that Saturday.
I went to Yahoo! Geocities, and made that “tvswilwheaton” account. Yes, I did that because I thought it was a very cheesy name, and kind of silly, and plain old “wil wheaton” was taken. I had absolutely no idea how to write/*.phpL, I knew nothing of tables, CSS, or anything, so I used the Yahoo! Pagebuilder, to do a sort of WYSIWYG page design. Oh, it was lame alright. Mucho lame. But I did it to see if I could, and to see if anyone even cared.
So, speed ahead to this year’s Comic-con. I made some really silly flyers that had the address of my website on them, and passed them out to anyone who came to see me.
TANGENT: I *LOVE* comics. I have over 5000 of them, much to my wife’s chagrin. I love comic-con, too, because it’s just so magnificently geeky, and good things always happen to me there. Here’s how it works: I can go, and sign autographs for people, sell a few things, and pay for the trip. Now, here is a warning to all current and future (and past) celebrities: The Autograph Area is where careers go to die. It can be really cool, and it can be really sad. Just know why you’re there…it’s like they say about poker: if you don’t know who the sucker at the table is, it’s you. Dig?
So it’s the Saturday of comic-con. I have talked my friend Kevin (who isn’t an actor, he’s just graduated Art-freaking-Center with HONORS as an illustrator…yet he has, through all sorts of crazy circumstances, mostly involving me, gotten TONS of work. You’d totally recognize him if you saw him) into coming with me for the day. We’re planning on me signing from 11 until 5, having some dinner, checking out the guests, and heading home.
Well, we get there at 11, and at 2, when we’re planning on taking a little lunch break, they give us the boot, to make room for someone else. Since our train doesn’t leave for like 8 hours, we head downstairs, to see what we can see.
A few hours later, as we’re getting ready to leave, I see Ben. I know it’s him, because of his unmistakable, ever-present hat. Ben is with some people, one of whom is Loren. I am really excited to see Ben, because I really, really liked his comics last year, and I wanted to see some new ones…problem was, he hadn’t made any, yet. But I gave him the address for my lame website, and asked him to take a look.
A few days later, I got an email from Ben, saying that he liked my site, because the content was cool, but the design was lame (which I’d known all along, mind you, so just get off my back, monkey!). He suggested that I check out this site called Killoggs, that he started with some of his friends. He said that I should write stuff there, because I’d fit in. Shortly after that, I got an Email from Loren. He said that he did hosting, and if I wanted hosting for a website, they’d help me out.
So I thought about it:
“I’ve always wanted to have a presence on the web…but they all hate me in internet land…but having a presence on the web is cool…but they’ll all laugh at me….I’ve got to concentrate…concentrate…concentrate…..I’ve got to concentrate…concentrate….concentrate…Hello? Hello? Hello? Echo! Echo! Echo! Now batting….Manny Mota…Mota…Mota….”
I had registered wilwheaton.net some time ago, just so nobody else could get it and make it into a something stupid, and I was just sitting on it…so, with Loren’s help, I got in touch with this girl Ashley, who had helped me park the domain when I’d registered it.
This story gets cool, I promise. And if it doesn’t get cool, I’ll add some stuff to it, to MAKE it cool, dammit.
Loren and Ashley helped me move the domain from it’s parking space, over to logjamming, where it lives today.
Now, I spent nearly 10 hours a day, over the next 6 weeks, learning/*.phpL, figuring out Dreamweaver, and getting things going…because I really was happy with the content that I had, I mean, it’s just me, you know? But I didn’t like the look, at ALL. It sucked balls. I mean, holy dogshit, did it suck balls.
While I was working out the look and feel, and the design of the site, I became a member over at Killoggs, and began participating in their discussions, and even wrote what I think is a pretty funny first post.
Somehow, during this time, I asked Loren about keeping an online journal. I don’t even remember how it came up, which is too bad, because I bet it’s a cool story. Maybe I’ll make something up when I’m older. I remember telling Loren that I was thinking about making an Open Diary, and he mentioned to me that there were these two things that I may want to look at: Blogger, and Greymatter. Since I was running the lame old site at Geocities, I wasn’t allowed CGI access, so I used Blogger. But I wanted more. I wanted comments, and I wanted direct links…in short, I wanted something cool like Underachievers or Killoggs. So Loren told me that I wanted Greymatter.
I gotta stop for a second here and say something about Loren: He is one of the coolest guys who I’ve never really met. I mean, he has held my lame hand every step of the way as I made this site. He answered all my stupid newbie, RTFM questions, and never was impatient, or condescending, or anything. He was really, really helpful, and I have come to think of him as sort of a friend of mine. I can totally understand how people become friends over IM and stuff, because that’s the only way we talk. Loren could call me, and I wouldn’t know his voice from Adam (mostly because Adam doesn’t call too much anymore, since I told his mom to stop hitting on me).
So, if you enjoy reading this weblog, you should take a second out of your day, and shout a big “Thanks” skyward, and direct it towards him, because I never would have known about this without him. And if you have a lot of money, you should give him some. Like have logjamming host you, or something. Because they’re cool. So there.
End of Tangent.
So, during this 6 weeks of/*.phpL learning, I am a little bitch. I am whining to Ashley, Mae Ling, Ben, Loren, and Josh, and they’re all being really supportive, and cool.
Then, one day, it hits me: the design I want. 6 weeks, to the day, after I launched the lame, old site, Anne goes away for the weekend. I put Underworld Live in my CD player, fire up Dreamweaver, and get to work. I work all through the night, and, by morning, I have the design I want. I sleep for a few hours, get up, and populate the site with the content that I want, which should explain all the spelling errors and broken links when I launched.
I get everything going, it’s all working out okay, but the only thing not working is Email…for some reason, I can get it, but I can’t respond. So I set up a .forward to my old yahoo address, but that’s just not very cool, you know? So I ask Loren and Josh if they can do anything, and Loren totally hooks me up. He figures out what is wrong, and makes it go.
Then, today, the site goes boom, and these two guys do everything they possibly can to make it work again. Which is cool, because I just look for things…things to make me go.
I guess the whole point of this little history is to stand up, and say that I couldn’t have done this without the help of these people, who hardly even know me. And I wanted to publicly say thank you, and give them what the kids call “hellamadprops”.
Hella.
Hella.
Hella.