Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Dancing In Dystopia

A post of random rumination, so if you're looking for dolls, action figures and such, there probably won't be much to interest you. If you want to feel crappy and bummed out, welcome aboard!

I was saddened to learn of the passing of Chris Squire, bassist and co-founder of the band Yes. Chris was 67 and had only recently announced he was battling a rare form of leukemia. Back years before the toy collecting stuff, I was an aspiring bass player and spent many hours struggling to learn songs like Roundabout. Circle of life an all that but I hate losing yet another of my influences.

Kind of related but I just got around to reading a friends' obituary last night. He died back in March of Lymphoma at the age of 45 but it had been hard to deal with so I finally decided to suck it up and face it. I was proud of the guy because he had achieved quite a lot as a successful business owner and local celebrity as well as being active with a children's charity and several other charity groups. It just hit me hard and it still sucks.

It probably doesn't help my output of generally fluffy nice stuff that there have been a few other crises and looming problems in my family the past few months. It's all part of being an adult but it does wear you down to feel as if the Sword of Damocles is always hanging above you. I guess what I'm trying to say is that, while I don't talk a lot about my personal life here, what goes on in the background obviously effects what gets posted…or rather, what doesn't get posted.

So, all this "cheery" stuff brings me to a question for my readers. Do you ever go through some life crisis or two or ten and ask yourself "why the hell am I doing this"? I mean, when you think about it, do you ever feel like having a large collection of stuff, often expensive stuff, is kind of pointless? I go through these periods from time to time where my hobbies just don't matter much and I feel guilty for the time, effort and money I put in to them. I have one outstanding preorder but I'm really not in the mood to buy any more after that. I've even started to seriously consider how to dispose of the excess and really whittle things down to just a few core pieces. Since I have kids, I would like to save some things for them but even though they are fascinated by Daddy's dolls and "Jai Joes", they are both really young and it'll still be a few more years before most of this stuff is really age appropriate. I know of at least one on-line retailer who buys collections and there's always eBay if I want to consider that torturous but potentially more lucrative route. My wife has had luck with eBay but I've honestly never sold anything on there. Anybody have thoughts about alternate venues for selling stuff? I know a few of you have tried selling through blog posts but has that really proven viable? I'm not yet ready to throw in the towel but there's a lot of stuff I've had stored away for years and if I'm not using it, why am I keeping it?

Aside from the hoarding completist mentality, one major reasons I acquired so much stuff was because of my desire to produce THE MAGNUM OPUS!!! with a CAST OF THOUSANDS!!! OK, so really, my plan was to do a long form, multi-chapter photo story with a cast of dozens, but you get the idea. Like many such grandiose schemes, this one eventually died from its own grandiosity and a lot of major real life stuff. Still, the basic core ideas have remained with me. Many of names of the figures you see posted here, as well as their basic backgrounds and personalities, came from that project. Since I'm not likely to produce THE MAGNUM OPUS!!! any time soon, I'm thinking of posting a basic background in a future post.
Oh and that real life stuff that stalled the story? Well, I bought a house and moved out of state, injured my back in the move, my elderly cat, whom I adopted from my sister after she died, died after a couple of years of nursing him. Then my Dad, who was already in ill health, suffered a stroke and died shortly before Christmas. There was the lovely 2005 hurricane season which included a bitch named Katrina that wrecked my new hometown but utterly destroyed my old one. A bit less than a year later, I got married and a few months after that, my wife's father died. All in a space of less than two years! So yeah…. On to the next post!

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Summer Solstice- Project: Obitsu June 2015

As you may have read in my previous post, I've decided that this will be my last regular, monthly Project: Obitsu entry. I thought it would be nice to end this with a photo shoot dedicated to the northern hemisphere summer solstice. This month's model is Daphne and I put together a little summery outfit based on the stuff I have on hand. Yes, you've probably seen this ensemble before if you're a long-time reader but why not? Nobody else was wearing it and it looks cute while being tastefully revealing (I hope).

The top and shorts are older Azone pieces, I think from the 1/6 scale "blue label" era and not Pure Neemo. Her purse is an old Get Real Girls piece, the shoes are Barbie and the cap is a WW2 female field cap from OJI. Daphne herself is based on an Obitsu SB-2 body with a W-01 pre-painted head. I've always thought she was a real cutie but she has often been eclipsed by some of the other girls in my crew. Maybe it's time to change that and give Daphne more screen time.

Anyway, enjoy the photos and stay tuned while I resume normal blogging!

A close up of the cute little purse. Somewhere, I have a t-shirt with this same logo.

This little gal has a pretty face, so I wanted to make sure you could see it.

Cleavage…. 'Cause I'm a boob who likes boobs! LOL

Another shot of Daphne's face. I just noticed that she still has a bit of "hat hair" but it's too late to change that now!

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Ch Ch Ch Changes….

So, here's something I've been thinking about for a while and have even written and deleted a couple of posts about. I've decided that after June 2015, I'm going to stop doing Let's Joe and Project: Obitsu as regular monthly entries. Instead, I want to return to a more open form style of blogging. I also want to focus on other figures and items in my collection aside from just Joes and Obitsus. A number of factors have contributed to this decision but a lack of time is THE major issue. I have almost no free time anymore and when I do get a break, it's usually so I can bathe or sleep. Even then, I don't get to do those things as often as I'd like! I can write occasionally by switching between my phone and laptop but these moments are brief and infrequent as well.

Another issue is that I feel the present format is getting a bit stale. I wasn't promising brilliant photography and thrilling prose but even by my low excitement threshold things are a bit boring. Deciding to focus on just Joes and Obitsus seemed like a good idea to keep me focused and on track but six months in, it feels very limiting.

What I hope to do for the rest of this year is continue photo blogging whenever possible but just opening up the subject matter to whatever strikes my interest at the time. I will continue to use Let's Joe and Project: Obitsu as tags when appropriate, just not on a twice-monthly basis. Starting in July, I will be posting other dolls/figures/toys and more written content as time allows.

Monday, June 8, 2015

Let's Joe! June 2015

 Welcome to the halfway house… uh, halfway POINT in my little exercise in boring my loyal readers to tears! OK, OK, maybe it's not THAT bad but some months have been more inspired than others. Anyway, this month's Joe is named Steve (huh?) and he's my resident "some kinda special ops guy". Oh yeah, now that's a well researched explanation huh? Steve himself is a Hasbro Super Articulated Joe. He's wearing the gray/green ACU camouflage uniform which seems to be most effective on your Grandma's old couch but not in most combat situations. His gear might be more appropriate for a Navy SEAL than Army Special Forces but I thought it looked cool, so that's my excuse. His rifle is the US M4, a short variant of the long-serving M16 family, while his sidearm is the legendary, century old US M1911 .45 caliber pistol. I was going to give him a beautifully detailed HK 416 but I fiddled with the pieces for a bit, looked at the M4, which was already assembled, and decided "screw it"!  So he's going a bit old school here. I didn't even switch out his Aimpoint optics for my usual Trigicon ACOG sight. I'm happy, it looks OK and I'm too lazy to change it, so there you go! I'm starting to think this whole project is a bit like my old Operation L.A.C.K. (Lame Ass Crappy Kitbash) but with more expensive parts!

 A close up of the .45 pistol in the holster. Why didn't I take out? Heck if I know!

 A close up of his chest rig. It would probably look better with stuff in the pouches but yeah, I'm lazy!

A better shot of the M4 rifle. A bit hard to see here but the cover flaps on the Aimpoint sight are opened.

Two things that came to mind as I was finishing this post. First, I'm not sure what I did with his helmet. I posted a photo on Instagram that showed him holding it under his arm and I meant to have him wear it in few shots but I've misplaced it. Second, I completely forgot the cool looking backpack I bought for him. I know where it is, I just forgot to put in on for the shoot.

Not much else to add so, enjoy the photos and feel free to comment if you'd like!