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Geek Glee and Random Updates

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Ok, first things first. This?


(Posted just about everywhere, and sent in by tons of you readers, but originally from this Reddit link.)

This is horrifying.

And also kinda cute...in a sick, demented, hilarious sort of way.

I think I like it.



Have you ever wondered about the "designer toys" so many of us geeks collect?

Like Dunnys, for example?

Well, there's a nice introductory article on the genre here. (Watch that site for a series of interviews with some of the toy artists, too.)


Now, prepare to drool, because Super Mom Cheri made the COOLEST superhero-themed room for her two boys:

And that's just the bed. (That art? On the back wall? WANT.)

Check out the rest of the room on I Am Mama Hear Me Roar. (And thanks to Mary B. for the link!)


Here on the crack-home front, I have good news: We've accepted an offer on the (former) Crack House! Fingers crossed all goes well 'til closing.

And a book tour update: After much research and discussion, we've determined that we *are* driving for the coming Cake Wrecks tour, but not in an RV. [sad face] The costs to do so are simply mind-boggling, what with gas, overnight fees, and of course the vehicle itself - plus there aren't enough parks open up north during the winter. So instead, we plan to find a small minivan or comfy car to make the journey in (our little Kia isn't cut out for such a long trip) and we'll stay in hotels.

I won't lie to you: I've been rather mopey about letting go of my RV dream. It's sad to think that what was once the great American vacation (ie the road trip) is no longer affordable for most Americans. For shorter trips, maybe, or ones where you drive somewhere and stay for a long time, I suppose it's still doable. But for us, being in a different spot every day or two for six solid weeks? No way. [sigh]

Still, I am looking forward to the tour. We're planning some fun new activities, and I know from experience that anywhere ten or more Wreckies are gathered together, there much partying will be had. (And you guys are coming, right? I better not be leaving my cats to sit by myself in a bookstore!)

And my final random personal update: We started working on our Disney scavenger hunt yesterday, and let me tell ya: if you guys have even *half* as much fun solving it as we're having creating it, this thing is gonna knock your socks off. So. FUN. We're interviewing cast members, poking our noses in every nook and cranny of every shop, photographing all the stuff no one EVER photographs ("Um, you realize Mickey is over THERE, right?") and learning and laughing and generally having a grand ol' time.

Plus, after one day, we're almost done scouting Main Street. So, um...this might take a while. Heh. (And I can't wait!)

Posted by Jen at 3:07 PM Labels: , , ,

67 comments:

  1. Can't wait to see your scavenger hunt! I'm a CM and a closet Disney Dork. (I work in entertainment now but started my Disney career at Spaceship Earth)Feel free to ask if you need any help!

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  2. So, I'm only an irregular visitor to Epbot; you might have answered this before and I missed it. But I have a question:

    How do you guys go to Disney so much? That place is excruciatingly expensive to get into. Is there some kind of locals' pass thingy you can get or something?

    Just curious.

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  3. Please please please come to Boise. Please. I can promise you at least 4 people...

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  4. Oh WOW! I love that little boys room! Although, the little girl in me wants it too.

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  5. you do know that Wal-Marts usually let folks with campers stay overnight free in their parking lots, right?

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  6. If I was a kid I'd so want that bedroom! Hell what am I am saying, I want it now! lol I don't think the husband would go for it though.

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  7. Love the State Puff Smore! I must be a little demented, too.

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  8. On the RV front, You can park overnight for free in Walmart parking lots if you go in and shop at the Walmart. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas and his wife have done it for years. If you buy a Rand McNally road atlas from a Walmart, all of the Walmart stores are listed. It probably won't change your plans, but it was worth saying.

    P. S. I hope everything goes well on the sale of the crack house!

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  9. The fabulous superhero posters can be found here:
    http://www.society6.com/studio/drawsgood/Vintage_DC_Superhero_Posters

    They are all kinds of awesome :)

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  10. I can't wait for your scavenger hunt- sounds like sooo much fun! I'm finally living somewhat close to Disney and this just might convince my fiance into going with me!

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  11. Congrats on the house offer! Hope it goes through quickly with a minimum of fuss.

    I love the superhero bedroom. It rawks!

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  12. I feel your pain on the RV! My 7 year old Daughter and I were supposed to drive cross country this summer, just me and her, visiting friends and family and things like Wall Drug and Mt Rushmore. We have been planning it for over a year, but now with gas prices we can't afford it =( Totally bummed!!!

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  13. Please tell me you're coming back to Portland, OR! Please, please, pretty please? We missed you guys last time and I've regretted it ever since. My 10-year-old is still working on forgiving me. Besides, you and me are birthday buddies! So, there: you HAVE to come to Portland!

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  14. You are allowed to call me rude or crazy or whatever for simply suggesting you put something else on your to-do-list... but what is the possibility you create one of those amazing Disney scavenger hunts for Disneyland in Cali for us Westcoasters? Another year or two and we'll take our oldest there while visiting grandparents in orange county and I've never been a "ride" person. I'd love something special to do while everyone else is busy.

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  15. For your tour: I know it might be a little too far away, (Ok lets be real here...it's very far away), but if you came to Rochester NY, it would make, not my day, week or year...but my LIFE! << Srs bsns right there. A girl can wish, no?

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  16. OK- So SOMEHOW I missed the announcement that you were making a Disney Scavenger hunt of your own! I know I read your post about the big one you just did, because I told my husband in no uncertain terms that we will be doing it in the nearest possible future.

    I REALLY wanna do your scavenger hunt! We go down with the kids all the time, and when we go just us, it feels kinda... empty. A cool, geeky activity would be just the ticket!

    @Elissa- there is a discount for locals, the passes are still pretty pricey, but (I did the math when we first moved here) an annual pass is the same price as 2-three day passes for a FL resident. You can definitely make it worthwhile. We live in Orlando and make it down to Disney probably forty or fifty times a year! For our family of five, that comes out to $22 per day TOTAL. :)

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  17. YES YES YES YES YES!!!! I'm so excited! PS PLEASE come to Sacramento, CA. Congrats on the house offer!

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  18. Good luck driving! My family and I drove from St.Paul MN to Tampa Bay Florida.

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  19. You should SOOOO interview my cousin. She's doing college program at Casey's and the Bakery. Her name is Angela, tell her Lisa sent you!

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  20. @ Elissa - as some of the other commenters have mentioned, there are annual passes for FL residents. And we have 'em. :)

    @Jeanne (and Tanya) - we know about Wal-Mart, but you still need hook-ups for electricity & water & whatnot. Plus I'd rather the security (such as it is, heh) of being in a park at night, if possible.

    @ Allison - fear not, Portland is on the list!

    @ Kronk - As much as we adore Disneyland, I can promise you we'll do a DL version if the WDW takes off!

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  21. I'm going to Disney in August. It's my first trip there as an adult and i'm going to be 7 months pregnant (no rides...boo)so a scavenger hunt would be so much fun! So if you could just drop everything else and get it done by then i'd appreciate it. :)

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  22. San Antonio, Texas, will offer you the BEST in southern Texas hospitality, plus we have LOADS of fun military spouses like me who'll be looking forward to welcoming you to our town. I'll treat to a round of drinks at the Riverwalk if you want -- whatever bribe works to get y'all here!

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  23. Sooooo! You are coming somewhere close to Illinois this time, right? Like maybe central Illinois? Or perhaps western Kentucky? Or maybe even beautiful St. Louis, MO? Any of those places will do! And then my little minivan can haul a pack of rabid cakewreck fans to your signing! Please make it so!

    Shelley in Southern Illinois

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  24. Man, I should have told you about Super Rex's room a long time ago. Cheri's mom did the artwork. I'll bet you can commission her to do a piece for you (if you can afford the shipping from Utah:)).

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  25. We just bought a Mazda 5 - it's kind of a mini-mini van and we love it! Haven't taken it on a road trip yet, but it's really comfy, handles well, is better on gas then a normal van, and holds TONS of stuff. I highly reccomend it!

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  26. FYI perhaps a little help for your trip:
    I have a Mercedes-Benz 300D. The "D" stands for diesel. We call it the Long Ranger because it gets about 35 mpg, is extremely comfortable, and is built like a rolling bank vault. I've put about 100,000 miles on it so far. For a long road trip - it's gone back and forth across the country several times - it's about ideal. Huge trunk, big back seat, infinite settings on front seats.
    And while diesel fuel is somewhat more expensive than gas at the moment, Ranger has lower maintenance and greater mileage.
    Also, Ranger is a 1992 model that new went for about $44k, but I picked up for under $5k a few years ago.
    FWIW

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  27. I'm so glad you're coming back to Portland! I didn't discover you until after your last visit here. :)

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  28. Hubby and I wrote 99% of the questions for the Passporter scavenger hunt book as well as making hunts for a few years for the old Disney usenet group, RADP. If you have questions, feel free to email!

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  29. Ooohhhh I love road trips!!! My family is heading out soon and plan on roughing it at the KOA camps along the way. At $20 a night it cuts way down on costs. A little investment in some good camping gear goes a long way when you factor in savings. Plus KOA's generally have a store, swimming pool, and nice shower facilities.
    I have to second the motion on the Mazda 5. Has the same engine as our Mazda protege and we are almost at 200,000 with no oil leaks and have only had to do general maintenance.
    Have fun!!

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  30. Congrats on the house offer, fingers crossed for you that all is settled soon. Do you have all your tour dates listed somewhere that I can look up? Will you be in or anywhere near NJ?

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  31. Oh my goodness - I love, love, LOVE that room!! I want to marry it and have its babies. Well, maybe not... But I would like to steal it for my wee Ollie-Monster.

    Book tour sounds great. Do you think you might include NZ on the next one though? No one good ever comes here.

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  32. tiny purple elephantMay 19, 2011 at 11:26 PM

    Jen, John,
    Are you guys coming to Canada?

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  33. When will the destinations of your tour be finalized? Any chance you'll be stopping by the Albany area?

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  34. Jen, please tell me you're coming to Chicago for the CW tour! That would be awesome.

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  35. @ Jen - Oh, wow, you're like the holy grail of Disney experts! :D I'd love it if you shot me an e-mail sometime; maybe if/when John & I get something cobbled together you could take a look at our progress?

    @ Marie - We have a tentative tour schedule that the publisher is still booking, so it hasn't been released yet. I think I heard John say we were aiming for NJ instead of NY this time, though, so you might be in luck!

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  36. I need that Stay-Puft S'more for a Christmas ornament.

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  37. Any idea if you'll be coming anywhere near Cleveland? If so I know of at least one baker here who would LOVE to bring some treats (ie: me)!

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  38. Random thought;
    There are many on line scavenger hunts for both Disneyland and Disneyworld. Obviously yours will be the best, but for those who are asking, just do a little on line searching, you'll find plenty. ( maybe you and John should test run a few of them while you work on yours. Which I'm sure will be awesome)

    May I randomly reccomend packing cubes for when you are living out of your car? Eagle creek and various other brands.This keeps everything from sloshing around in the suitcase.
    I woud also reccomend large comfy cars, like an old t bird. Big engine, will get you through the snow, low center of gravity, big trunk, you can sleep in the back seat... great for road trips. - sorry the RV thing didn't work out, it sounded fun.

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  39. I'm a CM too!! Interview me!!

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  40. Are there any scavenger hunts for Disney Paris? My husband and and I are stationed in Germany currently and we are visiting Disneyland Paris tomorrow! *squeal*!!!

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  41. I'm sooo sad I'm not close to the World anymore!! We went for our Honeymoon and want to go back SO BAD! (We live in Oklahoma!)

    Can't wait to read the scavenger hunt. ^_^

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  42. So will the scavenger hunt be an organized event or will this be a whenever you can make it to Disney thing? I want to get my vacation days in order!!!

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  43. My fam and I are in the process of buying our very own "crackhouse". I'm excited to use some of your ideas to fix it up!

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  44. MinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesotaMinnesota...

    You get the idea. That is all.

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  45. BWAH!! I'm so excited for your scavenger hunt - I can't wait to try it out on our next visit!

    Also, if you come ANYWHERE near me in VA, I'll be there with bells on!

    Much love, Stina

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  46. Are you coming to Jacksonville??

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  47. Can you please come to Oklahoma? Preferably Norman since that's where I live. We have book stores. I would bake for you. I've been told I'm quite good at it. It will still be ridiculously warm here in November and December (often in the 70s). Please?

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  48. Please come to San Diego again! I know that event was somewhat awkward last time, but I'm sure we can make it up to you!

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  49. Talking about amazing bedrooms, look up Steve Kuhl and the pirate ship bedroom he created, complete with jail and twisty slide. Steve Kuhl Flickr stream

    Good luck on the house and the trip! Will you be in California at all? Saw you guys in Pasadena last time. Not road trip possible, but you should remind your publisher that Hawaii is a state and you have fans there, I'm sure. Like the cakelava people.

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  50. Why not take a train? Romantic, Fun, Historical... What more could you ask for?

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  51. Forget the art (although it is super awesome), now I want a bed with an attached slide!

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  52. Sorry the RV won't work out! I bet that would be a pain to maneuver in cities anyway :)

    If you're looking for rental suggestions, have you considered Nissan's cube? Got one last year with road trips in mind, and even my ogre of a husband loves it. Good gas mileage to boot! I just wish it wasn't so darn goofy looking and had better lower back support (but hey, that's why there are pillows, right?)

    Can't wait to catch your IL leg of the tour!

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  53. Could you PLEASE make it to Minnesota or somewhere near there? I can't wait to do your scavenger hunt! Sounds like so much fun!

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  54. Two things... I can't wait for your scavenger hunt, and I can't wait for your tour! I'm sorry that it will be snowy and cold up here in the north, but I hope you will be in Boston! I'll be there!

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  55. Please tell me you'll be doing a signing in Orlando?! I'd love to come out and get the new book and meet you guys.

    I'm also interested in going on a scavenger hunt. We know a few people who can get us passes, and since our daughter is only 4 we can't do all the rides, but she might enjoy looking at the stuff you tend to walk by and ignore.

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  56. First, congrats on the offer for your crack house! Second, the S'more Puft is awesome, you know, in a sick, demented sort of way. Third, hope you guys will pleaaase come somewhere in Tennessee like Nashville or Knoxville???

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  57. hey! Have y'all decided on book tour city stops and dates? Because I just decided on a grad school and now finally know where I'm going to be when y'all go on the tour. I hope I can see y'all this year!

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  58. You should rent one of those stow 'n' go mini vans for your wreckie road trip, and one night find an overnight campground or something, collapse all the seats, put in an air matress in the back. Then order take out, eat it in the driver & passenger seats, then slide into the back and sleep. See instant RV gratification!

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  59. My sisters, Mom and myself are planning a girls only trip to.....Disney World! I told them about your scavenger hunt and they are totally on board with completing it when we go! So excited!

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  60. I've got a ford focus that is nice to drive and decent on gas, and I've slept in the trunk before lol (with the seats folded into the back seat). You might not want to do that but they are very roomy.

    Champaign Il? possibly??? Or even Springfield or St. Louis would be amazing!

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  61. So just how far north are you coming? We fans up in South Dakota sure hope you get close! At least this one does! Any idea when we'll get a tour schedule?

    And congrats on the offer for the crack house! Hope everything goes smoothly with it.

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  62. Puleeeeez come back to Texas.
    Just stay away from Dallas this time!

    Houston, is good for me and added bonus there is Lovely Indie bookstore that throws a killer book signing, called Blue Willow (http://www.bluewillowbookshop.com/).

    Pretty please....!!!!

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  63. oh and good luck with the crack house, and the scavenger hunt.

    Houston, houston, houston!
    is it working? lol

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  64. Please stop in Spokane, WA! That would be awesome :D

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  65. Oh. My. Word.

    That Stay Puft S'more is too much! I hate it as much as I love it... I've always hated when Stay Puft gets killed because he is SO freaking adorable...so seeing him with his leg chomped off is almost too much. Except that it's hilarious too!!

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  66. For our 6th wedding anniversary last year, we did a huge road trip. 10600 miles in 66 days. We staying in our cargo minivan and slept in various places...campgrounds, truck stops, rest stops, and even a couple Walmart parking lots. Total cost was about $5k (mostly in gas & food - I must say) It was the trip of a lifetime and we did a blog to chronicle our adventures (though it is still not finished and we seem to be stuck somewhere in New York - my bad.) Best wishes to whatever type of road trip you can do. It is totally worth it!

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  67. I know its been almost a year, but I have to check... How's the Disney scavenger hunt creation going? Just (finally) got the hubby to suggest the D-place with no "take-backs" and this would be SO freaking cool! Please, Please, Please, say it will be done by August. We want to combine and hit Star Wars Celebration in the same trip!!! Geektastic!

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