Darkwoodschool.com is up and running. Right now it is pointing at my tumblr feed but that will soon change. Also, there’s a lot of stuff missing. However, it is up and you can read a bunch of cool stuff about the history of the school and all sorts of things!
I was witness to something that will probably never be seen ever again. Only about 100 people in a theater in New York saw what went down. Rhinestone Burlesque did their very last show of Good Idea/Bad Idea, Animaniacs Burlesque, and in attendance was Rob Paulsen, voice of Yakko Warner. A superfan in line next to me spotted writer Peter Hastings and voice director Andrea Romano in line, and it turned out that I sat right next to them during the show.
The format of the show was wildly different than any burlesque I’ve seen. Instead of a performer doing a character, stripping (for lack of a better word) , and then the announcer coming out and introducing each act, it was a consistent show, almost like an off broadway play, with a story interspersed with burlesque performances. There were very long periods where there was no stripping going on, just a story with lots of well-written jokes. There were long musical numbers, such as Rita’s song, which was very well sung in the style of Bernadette Peters. There was a LIVE band doing some really amazing and complex numbers, and they interacted a little with the show and improvised bits as well. There was a foley artist on stage providing sound effects for everything and he was part of the act and was great, too. This was a full-on production.
This was the most surreal and well played out burlesque show I’ve ever seen. The show was about 2.5 hours long. Highlights include:
- stripping Dot Warner singing ‘I’m Cute’
- stripping Chicken Boo with full male frontal nudity (completely hilarious, totally surreal, and shocking) while singing an opera… yes, all with ‘bawk bawk baaawwwk’
- Rob Paulsen singing the universe song, the cheese song (with nearly nude performers with cheese hats), and the countries of the world song.
- Peter Hastings winning the raffle containing the Animaniacs DVD with Rob Paulsen’s autograph (what’s he going to do with it?)
- When Peter admitted to being a producer/writer for the show, all these almost nude women just jumped on him, grabbed at him, everything. They completely tried to dog pile on him, and he had a time trying to get away (who knows why) and his teenage companion (I assume was his son) put his hands over his face as if he wanted to die of embarrassment.
- After intermission, the band came out in their underwear and Rob Paulsen says loudly “Something for you, Andrea!”
- Wakko taking forever to take her clothes off because she had SO many props stuffed in her underwear.
- Yakko stripping to the countries of the world song.
- It’s Mime Time, miming a first date, already almost nude and yet miming taking her clothes off as a burlesque dancer.
- Every time Slappy Squirrel was on stage.
- Dot’s Poetry Corner: “What’s the difference between a pile of dead babies and a Cadillac? I didn’t lose my virginity in a Cadillac”.
- This one time I saw Randy Beaman’s mom feeding her dog some peanut butter…
- I think so Brain, but isn’t this just high concept fan fiction?
- Rob Paulsen sneaking in a “cowabunga!”
All of the performers hit their characters dead-on, and were all incredible with their stage presence, comic timing, and general performance. Make no mistake, these were a troupe of total professionals (despite all the flubs and technical problems, all of which were completely hilarious, not to mention amazingly well-handled by the improv talents of the cast).
Do you know how INCREDIBLY surreal it is for an Animaniacs fan like myself to be sitting in a theater next to Peter Hastings and Andrea Romano, watching Rob Paulsen sing Animaniacs songs while surrounded by nude females dressed barely as Animaniacs characters, bouncing boobs, and a live band and some guy making weird sound effects on stage? If you told this to any Animaniacs fan, they would never in a million years believe what I experienced. I am probably one of the luckiest Animaniacs fans on earth right now. In one of his songs, Rob Paulsen improvised the lyrics “I don’t believe I’m doing this right now”.
Peter Hastings said “thank you for correctly interpreting the Animaniacs.” and he left with a huge kiss mark of lipstick on his cheek from Yakko. Rob Paulsen said he couldn’t believe how amazing and wonderful the show was and how mindblowing it was that fans were so rabid about Animaniacs that they’d take their pants off. He was truly impressed. I left completely jazzed, I could not believe what I just saw. If there were any huge Animaniacs fans in that audience, they are truly lucky because that will never happen again and the magical moment is gone.
Today I was working on some logistics. I looked at census data for the US to help research a webcomic series I am in pre-production on called Darkwood, which is a fan comic in the Wizarding World. Later, I am going to design another school called Sacred Rock.
Before I go into this, I am not a math genius nor am I much a Ravenclaw when it comes to calculating anything.
If we attempt to stick with canon as much as possible, the amount of American schools could be guessed by using population of the UK and the number of students in Hogwarts (about 1000 according to JKR). Let’s guesstimate and add about 150 to account for w.a.d.a school in london (officially canon also according to JKR) and possibly 50 or so kids who just don’t go to school or get lost in the process somewhere.
So we can calculate what % of the UK population comprises magical school aged children between the ages of 11 and 17. I understand that wizards probably are not counted by the census in the UK or the US but they’re all we have to help us determine this.
Taking this estimated number along with the lifespan of wizards (150 years, from JKR) then we can estimate a number approaching 26,000 wizarding folk in the UK, but I digress. But this does help us in our estimate.
Anyway, I kept misplacing a decimal point, so I went on to a different method, which was to multiply the population of an area of the US by 1200 and divide that by the population of the UK. I cross checked it with the numbers I came up with using the method I did earlier and they matched. So I will go with it.
If we apply this entirely guessed system to the United States, accounting for not only population but also geographic location, you might have to divy up the areas with this map I made up. I understand that you can apparate and such in the Wizarding World, but considering the circumstances surrounding instant travel it’s no surprise they just stick all the kids on a train for Hogwarts. So geography is sort of important here.
The numbers approximate how many students would attend the school for that area.
I threw in Thornsaddle because, hey, Thornsaddle is awesome. Read the comic. In my model, Thornsaddle might have about 700 students for you fans out there who might want a number.
Notice the southern school probably would be either huge (bigger than Hogwarts) or possibly separated into 2.
As for Hawaii, I dunno, I have a bunch of ideas for this area, I can’t come to a final idea on it. Possibly having a bunch of boats go to some island and having all of Pacific Islands sending their kids there, or just having a tiny school in a Grimmauld Place-like building somewhere. As it stands there’d be less than 20 kids of school age in Hawaii.
Alaska I would assume would send their students into the Yukon or somewhere else in Canada.
People on the edges of these areas would probably just choose a school, or perhaps some states would be cut in sections between 2 or 3 different schools, for example, Kentucky would probably have an issue sending students into certain schools depending on location or other factors. Therefore these numbers can skew in either direction, give or take 50-100 students.
This is not to say also that an area might have a schoolhouse type deal that has only 50 students in it, but considering the numbers, this is what I came up with.
You might also make the conjecture that an area like Salem or another historic magic area might have an unusually high concentration of magical folk. Whatever, I can’t really go into that so we’ll just assume it’s consistent across the country. Besides, that doesn’t increase the number of magical folk in an area, it’s just a different dispersion across that area.
This other map below is probably a little more “accurate”. I think in terms of where you put your kid in school there are probably a number of factors including the curriculum, loyalties, ethnicity, geography, etc. plus a lot more. There might also be some kind of interest in keeping your child within a school that officially services a certain state, maybe for tuition purposes or something. Who knows. I’d keep the numbers, though, just to keep it simple.
You are what you choose in the now. When we identify with labels of job titles, of income levels, of skin color, of ability, of sexual orientation. When we link up with our identity, these terms that we think describe who we are, we limit ourselves. I upset many people because I do not identify with the label “I am disabled.” I don’t. I’m supposed to walk around in my life… claiming to everybody that my identity is based on what i cannot do and what i wasn’t born with? Tell me, does that make sense? Makes zero sense to me. You don’t walk around and meet people and go “Hi, nice to meet you. I don’t ride a unicycle well…. I can’t swim across the English Channel. I just thought you should know that.” That would be absurd. And yet so many of us identify with our labels as if they are us… You are infinite… this is an awakening, this is an awareness. This is a call to your heart to wake up. To live free of your labels. To go in the positive direction of what feels right. If you live out everyone else’s dreams… everyone else’s expectations, you will be miserable. You must follow what feels right to your heart, and when you do, you will arrive at a place that tastes sweeter than any food or drink, that will feel better than any clothing or blanket, and it will sound sweeter than any song or words. You will be free… Freedom takes courage. Freedom takes the experience of standing up for yourself. You cannot live your life based on what I tell you or anyone else. You must live it on your terms. You are capable of far more than what you’ve pulled off thus far, and I’m guessing you’ve done some cool things. I am waiting for you to reveal yourself to humanity on what positive contribution… you have for us. You are infinite. You are capable of far more than you ever thought possible in this lifetime. You are going to be scared. That is a fact of life. Being confident is not about avoiding the experience of fear, it’s about pushing through fear to the other side.
So for any of my asian friends (I’m looking at you pinoys especially) not going to the hunger games movie, so far I’ve noticed not 1 but 2 Filipinos playing tributes and at least 3 other male tributes that look asian. I’m a little surprised by the usually high representation we’re getting in a huge american blockbuster movie based on a hot property. Even more surprising is the fact that they are mostly male.
Here’s videos of them:
Tara Macken, district 4
Chris Mark, district 5
Sam Ly, district 7
Samuel Tan, district 8
Jeremy Marinas, district 10
and almost all of the asian tributes are in this one video:
The cool part is if I wanted to cosplay as one, I finally can be “legit” because these guys are all asian which are woefully underrepresented in the media.
The bad part is, well this is kind of a spoiler but not really - see, the Hunger Games is an event in which all of the participants die except for one. That’s the whole point of the event, it is no secret or giveaway to the plot. So the problem is not that they are playing characters that will die. That is a common complaint of minorities in film. However, everyone dies so it’s not a big deal. No… the real problem is many of the characters get more “face time” in the books. They either survive much longer or are particularly interesting.
Absolutely NONE of the characters these asian people are playing are any of those more important characters. Those roles are filled by caucasian or african american actors. Asians are playing as all the ‘throwaway’ tributes in the games while the non-asians take center stage - pretty much the same as it’s been in american movie history for the past, oh, several decades. So no surprise whatsoever.
In fact, more than half of the characters these people play die within the first few minutes of the Hunger games. Again, not a huge spoiler, because a huge amount of the kids die in the beginning of every Hunger Games. That’s the way the game works.
Jeremy Marinas plays the cripple footed boy, who did get a lot more attention in the books, but not really that much to be honest.
The saving grace here is that pretty much all of the other tributes that don’t ally with Katniss that do get a lot of face time in the hunger games are pretty much jerks with the exception of a few, like foxface and the cripple footed boy. So asians aren’t particularly being cast as villains either.
As soon as they put multiple asian men into the roles of more major characters, I won’t be totally satisfied. So far we asians have Harold and Kumar, which I am really proud of to be honest. However, I’m glad to see so much in this movie and I’m still excited that they are there. So it’s a big step forward.
Dad surprises son with tattoo, read the description. This got 10,000 views from the time I found this (9 hours ago) to now. I knew it would go viral.
Reposting this because this girl is amazing. About 20 years old, blind. So obviously her hearing and playing sense is probably much greater than us with sight. Insane cover of one of the best Joe Satriani songs, but on a synth. Amazing how close hers is to the original guitar.
Lots of controversy because obviously he’s a bad guy but apparently there’s all this stuff about IC not being a great org and Kony currently losing power anyway etc etc. Here’s one thing you all need to know about this situation after watching the video and reading the comments from its extremely vicious detractors: 1)it has spread awareness for something important, 2)it may prompt action from the youth to do good (maybe not for this issue but for many others), as this organization seems to have before, and 3)it made me realize I don’t do enough. So I am going to look into some charities important to my own roots/ethnicity and see what I can do for them. As it is now I’ve helped just such a charity for a few years now. Will I do anything for IC & Kony2012? No idea yet. But I will say thank you Kony2012 video for the information and the inspiration.
“I can tell you how to bottle fame, brew glory, and even put a stopper in death.”
That’s great and all, but all I really want is a sandwich.
Every Feb 1 people around the world do this event. I came back to it after a 2 year hiatus.
The thing that strikes me is how many people’s day consists of waking up at noon, not going to work, and just putzing around all day.