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#FitGeekFriday: It Begins

#FitGeekFriday: It Begins

Original image from Geek Fitness

#FitGeekFriday is something that Professor Beej has put together, once again, to share what he’s geeking out about regarding the “…fitnessy, mindful, hodge-podge of cool stuff I’ve found.” Way back when this was a linked initiative, I participated, so I figured I’d make it a thing on the blog again and participate that way, because I always write too much to make it viable for Twitter.

Pole Goals

Eda is one of the reasons I started pole.

I’ve mentioned it before (mainly on Twitter, but here as well), but pole dancing has consumed my life. I’ll get into the details of why doing it as exercise has been good for me on so many levels in another blog post, but something that I’m geeking out about this week is the pole goals my instructor and I finally set in stone, and some are even checked off! I saw this idea in one of the pole groups I’m a part of, and I thought it was a really cool idea to try out to track my progress in pole. She has a book from when she got certified with X-Pole, and we went through it today, and I’ve completed pretty much everything in Level 1 of pole minus three spins, and all the stuff regarding climbing. For now, we’re going to be working on the spins, and building up my core and upper body strength to start on the climbs. We figure, depending on when I can get a pole at home, that I’ll be able to “test out” (there’s no official test, though some places test your abilities to move into the next level of classes) of level 1 and into level 2 around August or September.

Quest Bars

Before I go to pole classes on Monday and Friday (which are late in the day), I’ve been eating a Quest bar for a protein boost and to have a snack because I won’t be eating dinner until close to 9 PM at night (I don’t like eating a full meal before exercise). I’ve had Quest Bars before, but never really got into them because I didn’t like the exercise I was doing, and didn’t care about nutrition and, well, I wasn’t in the best place to begin with. However, recently, I’ve really gotten into them, and I’ve been warily trying out flavors based on what the grocery store has. My overall favorite so far is Cookie Dough, but the grocery hasn’t had it, so I’ve tried Cookies and Cream, Double Chocolate Chip, and S’mores which have all been pretty tasty, too.

NCIS Binge

I cried so much… (Image from CBS)

I’ve been binging NCIS on Netflix because I needed a somewhat-mindless television show that, even when it had “IN THE FEELS” episodes, ended on a somewhat happy or bittersweet note. (My anxiety and depression have been in flux, and a majority of shows just don’t feel good.) NCIS fit that bill perfectly. I’m surprised that I made it through all 13 seasons available. I usually “jump the shark” between season 3 and season 5. While I did think some of Season 11 and 12 were draggy, and the writing wasn’t the best, and it was kind of annoying, it wasn’t to the point where I didn’t want to not watch anymore.

Epsom Salts

These are my new jam. Pole is fun, but it’s a full body workout, and it’s hard. And sometimes even two days later, a part of me is still sore, depending what I did in class. I’ve been loving soaking in these because I got a milk and honey one, and they smell amazing, and I hurt way less after soaking for a half hour or so. I’ve also been using these as a self-care thing when I’m not sore, and I love it.

Monstress

Image from Hypable

While I’ve been soaking in the tub, I’ve been enjoying catching up on my comic books. I’ve recently started Monstress, which my brother got me this past Christmas. I’m two chapters into the first volume, and I’ve found it enjoyable so far. I’m looking forward to finishing it, and putting together a more comprehensive blog post on my thoughts for the volume.

The King Pin

The King Pin

This is post 10 of 31 for the Blaugust event. To check out more Blaugust posts and sign up to participate, visit the Blaugust Nook!

I’ve been dabbling some in Marvel Heroes, and Chaide and I have also been watching Netflix Daredevil. I was never a Daredevil fan, per se, but I’ve been enjoying the Netflix version.

This image is a club owned by King Pin. I don’t know if it’s cannon or not (I’m assuming not), but it’s a really neat looking club outside. I’ve never really gotten into many villains (except the X-Villains) because I’ve never felt that many were beyond the, “Here to destroy the city! Yeh heh heh!” stereotype. I like knowing the motivations behind the villains.

King Pin is definitely one of those villains who seemed kind of flat on paper (from what little I’ve read about him) that has come to life in the Netflix show. We just finished the episode that focuses on King Pin, and it was intense, but made King Pin feel like more of a character than someone we just kind of shrug about and hope that Daredevil takes care of. Based on that episode, I want King Pin and Matt to work something out. I want them to better Hell’s Kitchen together. To come to an agreement. And that’s pretty awesome storytelling.

Now, if only more comics worked to give supporting cast characters and villains more motivations and made them well-rounded characters. One can only hope, and try to find some that do.

More Marvel Heroes

More Marvel Heroes

This is post 8 of 31 for the Blaugust event. To check out more Blaugust posts and sign up to participate, visit the Blaugust Nook!

A few days ago, I mentioned that I downloaded and booted up Marvel Heroes for the first time. I wasn’t particularly sold on the game, at first.

I’m a bit more sold, now. To the point of at least opening it up more. I think overall it’ll be a game where I pick it up here and there if I have limited playtime, or I need an off night where I can just de-stress and do my own thing.

What finally got me interested was fiddling around a bit with Storm’s powers. Once I figured out her lightning aura mechanic, I was smiling and giggling as I smashed things without even having to touch them. I’m still not particularly fond of her as a main character to play, per-se, but I did have fun. I got her up to level 9, which means I can utilize any of the other heroes to try very soon. Braxwolf mentioned that if you use the “t” key (so long as it’s not rebound) you can choose any of the other heroes to start with.

Someone asked me what the current starter heroes were, and quite honestly, I didn’t pay that much attention to it. I think Rocket Racoon was on there, and maybe Spiderman. I’m honestly surprised there’s not a list of starters. Though I suppose it doesn’t matter too much, as you can try all of them up to ten, anyway?

I wonder, though, if you can pick one of the non-starters as the first hero to play without spending splinters…

Trying Marvel Heroes

Trying Marvel Heroes

This is post 5 of 31 for the Blaugust event. To check out more Blaugust posts and sign up to participate, visit the Blaugust Nook!

On almost every podcast I’ve listened to the past few months (that are general-gaming focused, anyway), folks have been talking about Marvel Heroes constantly. And from the general consensus of the blogosphere and castingsphere (what’s the equivalent for podcasting?) is that it’s a pretty nifty game.

So, since it’s free, I decided to give it a chance. I rolled in, and decided to play Storm for the first trial character. I’ve heard that you can try all of however many they have (like, all of the Heroes) for free up to level 10, but it doesn’t seem that way based on the information the game gave me. It looks like there’s only a select few to try up to ten to move on forward in the game.

I’ve always been a fan of the X-Men, so the characters that interest me the most are the X-Heroes (specifically the Ladies). Sadly, they seem to be lacking. I’d love for Kitty (Shadowcat, whatever) to be there, or hell, even Domino or Dazzler would be so much fun to play! You know you’re imagining it, even now.

So I played about an hour of the game, and so far it’s okay. It’s not bad, but the story isn’t particularly grabbing me yet. I’m going to try it to level ten and see if I’m interested enough in continuing. I kind of wish, though, that the graphics were more like the ones from the cutscenes. I honestly think I’d be more interested in the game if that were the case. Sort of like Borderlands or something!

And I really do feel like a Marvel Villains game would be interesting and lead for more fun storylines. Because honestly, most of the Marvel Villains really aren’t that bad. I mean, yeah, there are some that are really really bad, but a bunch of them are just kinda Chaotic-based characters.

So, while I’m enjoying the game, there are things I’d enjoy more about it, though I wonder how much of it is currently character choice, and how much is story development.

Delving Into Comics

Delving Into Comics

May the 4th Be With You

First, I need to offer up the obligatory: Happy Star Wars day! I probably won’t end up celebrating today by watching the movies or anything, but I do hope to get them in when Mom is in town, so it might be a belated Star Wars day on my end.

So, my ultimate question is: Is it Revenge of the Fifth or Sixth? I’ve heard both. And when I googled, I came across this little gem. While it doesn’t clear it up at all, it makes it highly more entertaining. Especially the Tweety Bird reference.

To Comic or Not to Comic?

So, growing up I never really got into comic books. Collecting them, anyway. I enjoyed listening to people re-tell stories of the latest comic they’d read, and I especially loved watching the Original X-Men TV show from the 90s. I had considered purchasing the comics after watching the TV show because I loved the characters so much, but I didn’t because (1) there’s only so much you can get with “allowance” money, and (2) even at a young age I was one of those completionist types where I had to start from the beginning. (It’s a blessing and a curse–I do it with podcasts, too.)

So instead, I got into manga. They were easier to keep on a bookshelf and were generally only ten bucks a pop for more pages than a comic book. More bang for the buck, right? Besides, I’d always been obsessed with my mother’s Asian dolls and china sets, and was loving Sailor Moon and DBZ on TV. It just made sense.

My First Comic Book

Yesterday, before going to a pre-Graduation party for Chaide with some of his classmates (they won’t be able to attend each others’ parties, so they had a celebration together), we stopped at one of the downtown squares near the location and took a walk. We ended up stumbling upon an Antique/Collectible store, and they had a large comics section in the back. I’m sure you can see where I’m going, here. We ended up looking through the boxes, and most of the stuff in there was older Marvel and DC things, such as X-Men, Wolverine, Thor, etc.

Chaide picked out three of the comics he had as a kid that got stolen from a storage area he had (all of his Warhammer and comics and other geeky paraphernalia got stolen much before we met) and insisted that I get a comic or two as well.

I couldn’t really find anything I wanted. I have three Comic Collection Volumes at home. Two for Season 8 of Buffy the Vampire Slayer (Volumes 1 and 2, and I have the other six on a Wish List), and the other one is Volume 1 of Rat Queens which Chaide got me for Christmas at the suggestion of one of our lovely guildies, Yak. Volume 2 Collection for Rat Queens comes out later this month, and I’m greatly looking forward to it–even though I’ve only really read a few pages of the first volume.

Admittedly, I still haven’t finished the Buffy books, either. I get partway through and then put it down to game or read something else. But still, Chaide insisted since I’ve never had a comic book in my life that I pick something out. So I searched through the boxes and stumbled upon Serenity: Leaves on the Wind. I had to have it. But, being the completionist I am, I didn’t want to get it because they didn’t have Issue 1 at the shop I was at. And I won’t read it if I don’t start with the first issue.

Chaide just kind of rolled his eyes and picked it out of the box and added it to the bottom of his pile so I couldn’t grab it and put it back. So now, I own my first ever comic–Issue 2 of Leaves on the Wind. And I really really want the first one so I can read the one I just got. But it has to be the Dos Santos cover, to match the current cover I have. (Yes, I’m that hardcore completionist (or OCD)–all of my Harry Potter books have the embossed year on the spine. ALL of them.)

Expanding My New Collection

So now I need to find a comic shop near me to pick up Issues 1 and 3-6. I’d also like to collect the other mini-series written as a part of the Firefly universe. Now I just need to figure out a way to store them. I think I’m going to get binders per whatever series I end up purchasing that are loose (not Volume Collections) and keep the board/bag and put the board/bag into plastic sleeves in a binder. I know it’s not “optimal”, but I’m a reader, not just a collector. I get books because I love reading them. Comic books should be no different. 
I also stumbled upon a comic called Ruse in the boxes which looked interesting (but they only had Issue 6 through 18). It looks to be out-of-print and rebooted by Marvel later on. But I’m very interested in checking out the Original. I wonder if there’s a Volume Collection or two for all of them?
Are there any other comics (that aren’t Superheros, per se) that people would suggest picking up to a new collector? Please keep in mind that as a completionist, I’d prefer something older that’s a short-stint and easy to acquire, or something newer that’s still being published/doesn’t have an overwhelming number of issues.