Steampunk Vendor Spotlight: Oil and Lace

Oil and Lace Animatronic T-Rex

That’s one dapper t-rex.

While there was an incredible collection of fantastic vendors at the Steampunk World’s Fair, there was one incredible stand-out: Oil and Lace, an outfit that sells amazingly detailed animatronic animals, and it was easily my favorite by a large margin. Continue reading

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Can you hear me now?

Hearing aidsLiving with a disability can be exhausting. Living with someone that has a disability can be almost as bad, as you’re constantly dealing with it as well as constantly seeing the toll it takes on someone you love. In the case of me and my wife, she has moderate to severe hearing loss in both of her ears and needs to wear two hearing aids in order to live some semblance of a normal life so she can communicate.

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Behind the curtain at the Steampunk World’s Fair: the Erin Goss interview

The Steampunk World's FairAs part of my continuing coverage of my trip to the Steampunk World’s Fair last weekend, I recently had the pleasure of sitting down with Erin Goss, the Customer Service Manager and Vendor Coordinator for Jeff Mach Events. Thanks to the fact that she and my wife are very close friends, Erin was gracious enough to permit me to pick her brain a bit about what it’s like putting together such a massive convention. Here’s an in-depth look “behind the curtain” at not just the Fair but other JME events that Erin has worked over the years. Continue reading

“There’s Always Next Year”

I’m not one for reblogging other people’s content, but sometimes something comes along that’s too important to ignore. Please read this heartfelt appeal from my good friend and colleague Vaughn R. Demont – because sometimes next year is too far away for your dreams.

Vaughn R. Demont

Apologies up front, this isn’t really a happy post.

Once you get out of college, you usually have a lot of dreams, some of them wild, like moving to Hawaii and living there or buying season tickets to the Seahawks or something, and some of them not as much, like getting a nicer car or a bigger TV, but you stay realistic, work on what you need, and for the dreams, well, there’s always next year. For some of us, it’s a literal promise, a year passes and things get better, and you walk into an electronics store and wander around, looking at the TVs knowing that if you really wanted, you could walk up to the wall of displays, point at a 48″, tell the guy behind the register “I’ll take that one” and mean it. You don’t, of course, but the fact that you could does wonders for…

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Riding the Con Circuit: The Steampunk World’s Fair

Steampunk World's Fair and its Giant Robot

They had a giant robot. How do you not love this?

Last weekend, the wife and I attended the Steampunk World’s Fair just a stone’s throw from the Raritan River in Piscataway, New Jersey. This was the first time either of us had actually been at a convention in years, and I’m happy to report that we had a fantastic and thrilling time.

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The Horror of Reconstruction: Craig Gabrysch’s Jacob Smith

The New Orleans Zombie Riot of 1866 and Other Jacob Smith Stories by Craig GabryschIf there’s one period in American history that’s fraught with human suffering, it’s the years following the tragedy of the Civil War known as the Reconstruction. The New Orleans Zombie Riot of 1866 and Other Jacob Smith Stories by Craig Gabrysch leverages this horror and infuses it with enough cthonic dread to make the reader’s hair stand on end.

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