Archive for February, 2011


Posted: February 28, 2011 in Braak
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I have a new project that I am working on, which I may or may not one day unveil to you.  Between that, though, and my new, regular, boring job, it’s likely that my posting will be sporadic for a little while.  I am also considering some things regarding the future of Threat Quality Press, and of blogging, and what the next stage for the site is.

In the meantime, here’s a question that I have:


The chief strength of “Being Human” is right there in the title – it’s a show that finds humanity in the outlandish. Which SHOULD be storytelling 101, but the fact that it often feels like a rarity on genre shows makes it feel that much more special (and subsequently makes me even angrier at other scifi/fantasy fare currently available on the networks).

For those coming in late: A vampire, a werewolf and a ghost live in the same house together, clinging to their makeshift family unit to feel less like monsters – while inflicting trauma on themselves and each other not because of their monstrous natures, but because they’re more human than they realize. Which means they often make staggeringly bad decisions.  (more…)

I don’t do nice things for people.  The reason for this is that I am constantly writing my obituary in my head, and that I am deathly afraid of dramatic irony. 

Why do they make electric cars that you have to plug in, instead of cars with removable, briefcase-sized batteries that you could switch out at the gas station for charged ones?  The station charges the old batteries, you drive right away.  It would work basically exactly the same as propane tanks.

The Braakmobile

Posted: February 21, 2011 in Braak
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Some people, if they had $300 million dollars, would try to put Firefly back on the air.  I would probably do something stupid with it, though, like build exactly the kind of car I would want to have if I became a crimefighter.

Obviously, the best car for crimefighting (and in general) is the Batmobile.  I don’t think anyone’s arguing about that.  First choice, if you’ve got to have a car to fight crime, it’s got to be the Batmobile.


Borders and Its Last Dying Days

Posted: February 19, 2011 in Braak
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I went to the Borders at the mall, today.  It is closing, so they are having a huge sale.  Well, a store-wide sale.  Most of the books are only 20% off; even the ones that used to be on the 3 for 2 table, but I guess it’s not like Borders gives a shit what anyone thinks about them anymore.

I feel pretty horrible about store closing sales.


When it comes to police dramas for me, the list pretty much begins and ends with “Homicide: Life on the Street.” It wasn’t the first to inject the notion of realism to cop shows (“Hill Street Blues” gets that honor, though that show was before my time), but it was the first that made me realize that yes, being a cop is an honor, a brotherhood, a matter of civic duty and all that, but it’s also a job. A shitty, fruitless, mind-numbing job.

There’s not a lot of busting heads or car chases or shootouts or criminal masterminds or slamming other cops against lockers. There’s paperwork, asking repetitive questions, arresting absolute morons, having tiffs with co-workers and not getting paid very much. “Homicide” made cop-work look like an absolute fucking grind, and as a result made me respect police work a lot more.  (more…)

Some Thoughts on Borders

Posted: February 15, 2011 in Braak
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Borders, you may have heard, is going to be filing for bankruptcy.  They will divest themselves of 200 stores at first (at first), out of their 640-some.  I have said that I think this is a strategy meant to allow them to easily shed the worst of their liabilities, and to make the remaining infrastructure more appealing for a buyout.  I generally stand by this decision; intuitively, I feel little certainty that anyone in the company is trying to save access to books; though I can hardly fault anyone on a sinking ship for looking for a life preserver before they consider the loss of their boat’s impact on the sugar industry.

What I find interesting about this is that Borders employees have been predicting a collapse like this for years.


Still shaking off the mental cobwebs of winter. I’ve decided that our groundhog-based tradition of sorting through the season should instead be replaced by a personal barometer: whenever it is that you first say, “Christ I’m Sick of This Season!” simply add two more months. That is how long your personal winter will be. Come on, mid-March!

In other words, hard to motivate yourself to write something substantial when the most profound thought the brain can muster is “Well…that episode of ‘The Cape’ wasn’t that bad, for ‘The Cape.'”

Bill's personal decor remains...disconcerting.

So: More worthwhile posting later in the week, but for now I want to point you in a couple places:

1) Hell-ku, Bill Pettit’s new site of grumbly haiku with accompanying Edward Gorey-esque illustrations (it’s only on week two, but certainly worth the 30 seconds a week to check out), and

2) Boston or Bust, a journal of marathon training by Friend of TQP (or “fotquop”) Matthew Burns.

Go forth.

Moff (sometimes called “Josh Wimmer”, as is the custom of his people) a little while ago wrote a post questioning the value of criticism. I have been meaning to write something lengthy in response to it, as I think he makes some interesting points, and that it’s an interesting topic of conversation.

This isn’t going to be that, though. Instead, I want to look at just one idea, and how it relates to the theater, and how amazingly peculiar an artform the theater is.