Friday Five

5 things you should check out on Netflix

The-Inbetweeners-001

The Inbetweeners

This rib-tickling series follows English lad Will McKenzie and his best mates, Neil Sutherland, Jay Cartwright and Simon Cooper, as they try — and fail spectacularly — to navigate the wretched no-man’s land known as adolescence.

Oh, my goodness. If you haven’t seen this show, close this window and go watch it now. Seriously! It’s an oldie, but a goodie. It’s one of my go-to series when I need a laugh. I quote this show at least twice weekly. The characters are all unique and hilarious in their own way. Bonus-English slang! It gets me every time.

Bronydoc_logo

Bronies:The Extremely Unexpected Adult Fans of My Little Pony

Spotlighting a small but singular pop cult, this documentary looks at the adult devotees of the animated show “My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic.” For the self-described Bronies, their shared obsession rewards them with friendship and fun.

I love having a look inside any fandom, especially ones that I’m not a part of. The Bronies documentary allows you to see a little bit of the world of Bronies- their conventions, their creations, and their community.

Take-This-Waltz-01

Take This Waltz

Filmed in Toronto, this intimate, unflashy romantic drama portrays a happily married woman who experiences a sudden and strong desire for another man. Further complicating the situation, the object of her desire resides just across the street.

This movie pulled at so many emotional strings for me. At one point I hated the female lead, then felt sorry for her, and at one point I even sided with her. My emotions were ALL over the place. Great movie that’s not your typical romantic film.

3601207

Aziz Ansari’s Buried Alive

Standup comedian Aziz Ansari (“Parks and Recreation”) headlines his third standup special, where he shares his uniquely hilarious perspective on fears of adulthood, babies, marriage, and more. Ansari’s look at life on the cusp of 30 years old is smart, unfiltered, and hysterical.

Aziz Ansari is hilarious as an actor and comedian. All of his standup specials are great and this one is the best. I have watched it twice and laugh out loud so much while watching it.

safety-not-guaranteed

Safety Not Guaranteed

A team of journalists are dispatched to find out who’s behind a classified advertisement seeking a companion for time travel, with payment on return. After tracking down their oddball prey, the team has to decide how best to approach their subject.

I loved this movie and not just because it has Aubrey Plaza. It’s got a great cast, romance, adventure, comedy and is just an all around good, quirky, feel good movie!

Have you seen any of these? What did you think? if you decide to watch any of them, let me know what you think! Happy Friday!

**This Friday Five is inspired by 5 snow days. Yep, 5 days off work in addition to the 2 weeks of winter break, I just had.**

Advertisements

I’m a geek for: Snail Mail

My love for snail mail started when I was a wee Sophierocious. My grandma and cousins sent me letters from Sierra Leone from as far back as I can remember. I loved getting their letters addressed to little ole me. I cherished them and kept them in a little shoebox. When I got older and actually learned to write, I begged my mom to allow me to have my very own  pen pal. And from the back of some 90’s kids magazine she found one. My first pen pal was Maureen from the Philippines. We were both 9, loved stickers and reading. The makings of a beautiful friendship. We wrote obsessively for years about cartoons, books, boys, everything!  I still have most of her letters and gifts. Her letters will always stand out to me. Thin envelopes stamped “Airmail”– inside was always the most beautiful stationery. I still can not get over her handwriting. It was so neat, perfectly spaced and perfectly sized even on line less paper. Seeing a letter from Maureen in my mailbox always brightened my day. Throughout elementary and junior high school I gained more pen pals through FB’s(Friendship Books). Remember those?! In case you don’t, I’ll tell you all about them. Back in the day, we didn’t have a message board to connect with prospective pen pals. We had to do it via snail mail and FB’s were the way to do it. “FB’s are little booklets made by stapling paper together, or are sometimes just sheets or strips of paper. They are usually decorated and the person who starts the book writes their name and address as the first person sending the book. People often include a list of interests as well. The FB is then passed around from penpal to penpal, and can often also become a way for one to meet new penpals. Most people hope to see the book again once it is full so they add their return address to the back cover of the book too, or inscribe “Return to Sender” on it.” Even though I gained a lot of pen pals through FBs, I didn’t keep in touch with them. Maureen and I did until we both went off to college. We send the occasional birthday card, but we mostly keep in touch via Facebook.

Writing postcards in a cafe in St. Moritz, Switzerland

Writing postcards in a cafe in St. Moritz, Switzerland

In college, my love for snail mail took a break. I didn’t start writing letters/postcards again until I moved to The Netherlands. There I sent tons of letters/postcards from my travels across Europe, museums, or just letters to send some joy in the mail. My roommate and I had a Sunday tradition of going to a cafe, having a coffee, some girl-talk, and writing letters. It was quite lovely and a habit I’ve continued, though not as often. Luckily, I’ve discovered two snail mail groups that have  sparked my love of sending snail mail again! International Geek Girl Pen Pal Club and The Snail Mail Collective. Check them out!

Did you have a pen pal when you were growing up? Do you still send letters/postcards?  If you’d like a postcard from me, drop me a line with your address!  I’d be happy to spread some joy to you too.

“I’m a geek for” is a new monthly link up created by MagicCatJenny . Head over to her blog to see what others had to say about their love for snail mail

Geeky leggings

Geeky themed leggings have been popping up everywhere, just in time for fall. I love it! Here are a few favorites I’ve come across.

From L to R-1. Totoro leggings 1. Pac-Man leggings   3. Sailor Moon Galaxy leggings  4. Lumpy Space Princess leggings 5. Miyazaki Ghibli leggings 6. Star Wars Montage leggings  7.Sonic leggings 8. Mass Effect N7 leggings  9. Street Fighter leggings

I absolutely adore the Black Milk Mass Effect and the Totoro leggings. Which do you like? Know of any other sites that sell geeky themed leggings?

Phew!

PaxPrime/Seattle was a good time! I’m so glad I was able to attend even if it was just for 48 hours. And what a jam packed 48 hours of nerdtivities it was. In a previous post, I mentioned the basics about Pax, but I’ll yap about it a bit more. Pax, Penny Arcade Expo is a 3-4 day gaming convention brought to the public by the guys of Penny Arcade. Currently, there are 3 Pax events that happen worldwide. Pax Prime-in Seattle, in the Fall, PaxEast-In Boston which occurs right before Spring, and PaxAus-in Melbourne, Australia which happens in the summer. Pax Prime and Pax East are the biggest gaming conventions in North America with over 70,000 attendees. Both big names in the gaming industry and indie developers bring their new video games and consoles for the fans to have a first look and first game play on the exhibit floor. There are panels scheduled throughout the entire weekend from game companies such as Bioware and Gearbox(and tons more!), panels dedicated to crafting, community management, romance in gaming, diversity in tabletop gaming, the making of games….if it’s gaming related, you can find a panel on it at Pax. There’s also a tabletop gaming floor where you can join tournaments, purchase new games/supplies and checkout games and try them out at one of the hundreds of freeplay tables! Oh, oh, oh! There’s also the handheld lounge, console lounges (classic and present gen!), Arcade rooms, PC areas, concerts, and more. Seriously. if you ever get a chance to attend a Pax, do it!

I think Adam Sessler and the guys of Casual Friday summed up Pax pretty well in this video, “What’s so great about PAX?“. It’s a party/festival for gamers that happens both in and outside of the convention walls. I love PAX and the friendships I’ve made from it. Ahh!! I can’t wait for East! I’m getting ahead of myself. Here’s what I did in Seattle/Pax.

I arrived at 10 am on Thursday after being in airports and on planes for 7.5 hours. I was pooped, but my time was limited so I started my day! I spent the day wandering around downtown and Chinatown until I couldn’t stand any longer. Then it was on to my friend’s house to nap before the Sixth Annual Triwizard Drinking Tournament. The TWDT was a good time. I had a blast battling wizards from all 4 houses. I’d love to tell you guys I was victorious and finished all of the challenges this year, but I didn’t! I could only complete the first 3- Challenge 1: The Two Wands Drink two shots at once, Challenge 2: House Duel Pair up with an opponent from your opposing house and cast your best spell (shot), Challenge 3: Divination OWL Pair off with a partner and secretly choose rum, tequila, or vodka. If your partner correctly guesses which you’re thinking of they can take their choice of shot. If they guess incorrectly you choose which of the three they must drink. Reverse roles and repeat. I could have continued, but after 4 shots it was in my best interest to call it a night. I had a full day of Pax the next day! Anyway, 3 out of 5 ain’t bad, right…RIGHT?

I woke up bright and early on Friday to start my day at Pax. I waited in line for about an hour to get in, grabbed my loot bag, and hit the floor. The Prime floor is…actually not one floor. It’s a couple of floors and it’s so overwhelming. Wall to wall covered in everything I want to have a look at. I headed to the Sony booth first and played a couple of games on the PS Vita. I played Killzone Mercenaries and although I’m not a big fan of shooters,  I was impressed by the quality of this game on a handheld. I also played Hohokum. I had no knowledge of this game before, but when I saw it, I had to play it. It’s more of an experience than a game. You’re a snake like creature traveling through levels/worlds. There is no score, time limit, or tutorial. Developer Richard Hogg has said that the game is about “relaxing in a space and just enjoying the experience and the music, instead of trying to complete it to make progress”.  It is beautiful in the way that Journey is beautiful. Excellent visuals, score, and experience. Hohokum, Tearaway, and Flower are really doing a good job of making me want a PS Vita. While in the Sony booth I also had a look at the PS4. I didn’t get to play it (3 hour wait!), but I did watch gameplay of Killzone Shadowfall on the PS4 and it looks amazing. My short Vine of gameplay does it no justice, so do yourself a favor and Youtube some gameplay. I can’t wait to play it. AND I can’t wait to have a PS4! I visited the Nintendo booth because, duh! Nintendo! I got a photo with Pikmin and some Pikmin swag. Observed some Pokemon x/y gameplay, saw the 2DS which doesn’t look as weird as I initially thought, played Sonic Lost World on both Wii U and 3DS(It looks great and is basically a revamped classic Sonic games ), and hung out in the Nintendo lounge getting streetpasses galore! I also visited the Microsoft booth, Wizards of the coast, Behemoth…I was everywhere. SO much that I missed all of my panels. >.<  But it was worth it. Other highlights include Strife( a new MOBA coming this fall/winter) which will get it’s on post on the blog, MTG in the tabletop gaming, and my new love for League of Legends. Yep.

*phew* Well, that was a lot of yapping and I was only there for a day! My fourth and shortest Pax was a win. Hoping to get to PaxEast in the spring! How was your extended weekend? Did you spend it at a con?

 

Gencon

Gen Con is one of the largest gaming conventions in North America and it happens annually right  in my new city. It focuses on board/tabletop gaming rather than my usual video-gaming focused cons, but I still attended.  I was only at  Gencon on Sunday. One day out of the 4 day convention. Sunday is the last day and a lot of vendors pack up their booths, but a bonus is that their games are discounted. The Sunday badge was also discounted.  It’s sold as a family badge- One badge for the attendee and up to 3 complimentary badges for $30. The bf and I aren’t big on boardgames (I play Magic the Gathering pretty regularly, but he doesn’t play anything), but we couldn’t say no to a day of nerdtivities for $30!

I wore my brand new Pikmin hat that Alleycadabra custom made for me. Seemed like the perfect place to debut it. It got a lot of compliments on it. Isn’t it cute?

Firefly the boardgame

We arrived at Gencon around 1pm and just walked around for a couple hours. We usually jam-pack our con schedules with panels, activities, and a day dedicated to floor walking. But this was our first time at Gencon and we just wanted to see what it was about. There was a lot to see. Vendors selling all kinds of stuff. My favorite clothing vendor was Welovefine which coincidentally, I just found out about via NerdBurger. I’ve eyeing these Lumpy Space Princess leggings on the site and seeing them in person just solidified my decision to buy them. I was worried about them being cheaply made because they’re only $25, but they are legit! I am definitely going to grab a pair. We walked through the artists alley and “ooh’d” and “ahh’d” over lots of art. My favorite artist was Carloline Lebar. We talked to her awhile about her art. Her prints and paintings are beautiful. Have a look on her website – Carolina Lebar. Besides games for sell on the floor, there were also game demos. They were pretty full so we didn’t get a chance to demo anything, but I did jot down the names of a  couple of games I’m interested in, so that I can try  them out at the Game Paradise library. Firefly the board game particularly piqued my interest! I got the general gist of the game from watching some peeps play.  I also talked to a Firefly RPG vendor for a while. I’ve always been curious and interested in participating in a tabletop RPG styled game.  And this one was a Firefly focused one?! SOLD! Speaking of Firefly, I saw the cutest Firefly cosplay of all time.

Look at that little Wash. Just look at him! So adorable! I  decided that the bf and I will have to do a Zoe/Wash costume. I’ve always wanted to do it and he finally agreed! So, hopefully I can figure that out before PaxEast 2014. *crosses fingers*

Gencon was fun. I don’t think I could spend 4 days there, but  will definitely get a one day pass again next year. And next time I’ll sign up for some events and play a game to get the full Gencon experience. The ladies at PureGeekery have a great post about their time at the con.  Check it out.

Pax Prime

It’s almost time for PAXPrime! Pax, Penny Arcade Expo is a 3-4 day gaming convention brought to the public by the guys of Penny Arcade. Currently, there are 3 Pax events that happen worldwide. Pax Prime-in Seattle, in  the Fall, PaxEast-In Boston which occurs right before Spring, and PaxAus-in Melbourne, Australia which happens in the summer. I usually attend Prime or East or both! And I’m so happy that Prime is just around the corner. I can’t wait to see all of my Pax friends that I’ve met over the years, hopefully get a chance to play on next-gen consoles, tabletop game, and of course enjoy Seattle. Oh! And the parties! Pax parties are pretty great, y’all. I don’t have any parties set in stone yet, but I will be attending the Triwizard Drinking Tournament (TWDT) again this year. A Harry Potter themed pub crawl that happens the night before Pax begins. I’m happy to say I’ll be returning to house Hufflepuff!

I had such a blast last year and I’ve already started preparing my outfit for this years crawl. Theme- Hufflepuff preppy realness-Yellow dress, black ballet flats, black cardigan with Hufflepuff badge on the chest. Hair in a top bun secured with a Hufflepuff bow! I’m going to look darling. Which doesn’t matter at all because I’ll be completely smashed by the second bar. -_- The pub crawl isn’t just about drinking and making new friends. It’s also a fundraiser for Child’s play. Child’s Play, founded by the Penny Arcade guys,  improves the lives of sick children by donating toys and games to hospitals worldwide. The TWDT raises money by selling items house members have donated and flat out donations. I am donating some Hufflepuff themed bows. They cost me little to nothing to make and aren’t anything special, so l put a price tag of “Donate whatever!” on each of them.  All proceeds will go straight to Child’s Play! Hoping my house can donate enough money to Child’s Play to be number 1! We were #3 last year. Lets go Huffles!

Deathly Hallows Part 2!

I saw Harry Potter Deathly Hallows Part 2 last Thursday at midnight.  I went to a double feature with 5 of my friends and my bf. We watched part 1 at 8:45 and part 2 at midnight. I thought it would seem like a long time to be in a theatre, but it wasn’t. I hardly  noticed. The 45 minute intermission and my “big” purse full of snacks helped. ^_^ I’m so glad we bought double feature tickets. When we arrived at the theatre for our movie around, there was already a HUGE line of people waiting for the midnight movie. NOOBS! Because we were in our theatre first, we got the super cool, limited , 3-d Harry Potter specs! (check them out in the second pic). I kept mine, of course , and I’m going to wear them at every 3-D movie.

pre-movie with my Gryffindor headband

with our 3-D Potter glasses!

I loved the movie. The Deathly Hallows Pt 1 and pt 2, are my favorite movies from the entire series.  I think they were both really well done. They had the perfect amount of humor and  romance, to go along with all of the epic drama of book 7. I can’t wait to see it again and again and again! Was I sad that it was the end? Sorta, but I’m ok. Harry will live in our hearts (and on our DVD and bookshelf) forever!