Monday, July 7, 2014

DC Comics Presents!

So, I heard that in the next season of the CW's Arrow television series, Brandon Routh (former Superman) is joining the cast as Ray Palmer a.k.a. The Atom.  Also, there will be a new Constantine series (which I'm pretty excited for)

I like the fact that DC is going with television for a lot of their characters. Several years ago, I thought how great it would be if one of these fledgling networks would create a show for DC comic characters. Base it off their wonderful comic called DC Showcase. Each episode would introduce a character and then maybe spin them off into a separate series or have the character return for an additional episode or two.

This got me thinking again. What characters would I like to see put on the screen. Now, I realize some of the characters may have been in Smallville or maybe even Arrow, but here are my choices... (BTW, these aren't all the ones I'd like to see.)

The Creeper. Jack Ryder was an arrogant news reporter who becomes a maniacal vigilante who may or may not be completely sane.

 Plastic Man. Eel O'Brien was a gangster who accidentally was doused with a chemical giving him the power to stretch and form himself into any shape he wants. This character was very comical and a lot of fun to read as a kid.

Zatanna.  The daughter of a Golden Age Hero called Zatara, she is a stage magician who can perform real magic by saying what she wants to happen by speaking it backwards. I think she may have been on Smallville, but I'd like for a solo adventure to happen for her.

Black Canary. I know that Diana Laurel Lance is on Arrow, but she need to be the superhero that we have all have come to know and love.

The Doom Patrol. The strangest superhero team ever assembled. The actual team was Robot Man, Negative Man, and Elasti-Girl. They were lead by Dr. Niles Caulder, called the Chief. This group had some crazy adventures and really created a stir when they sacrificed themselves to save a village in New England. Of course, they were revived many, many years later. Beast Boy was added at one point as well as Elasti-Girl's boyfriend, Steve Dayton, a.k.a. Mento.

The Metal Men. I loved this series as a kid. I got excited when they made guest appearances in other books. They were essentially solid blocks of metal that had a device in them that gave me sentient life. My personal favorite was the cynical Mercury, but the other members were Gold, Iron, Lead, Tin, and Platinum. They were lead by Dr. Will Magnus.

The Endless. Neil Gaiman's brilliantly written series about a character called The Sandman (not ot be confused with the Golden Age hero) introduced these ethereal beings. Sandman was actually called Dream. His brother and sisters were: Destiny, Delirium, Desire, Despair, Destruction, and my personal favorite, Death.

The Phantom Stranger. One of my favorite characters in the DC Universe because there really isn't much known about him. He wanders the world and aids, but never interferes with the lives of men.

So, what do you think? What DC heroes would you add to this list?

Sunday, July 6, 2014

The Blocked Writer's Blues.

I've always had a fascination with the story of Faust.

You know, the story of a person so willing to get something that they are willing to give up their soul to get it.

I think it would be interesting to have a tv show based upon it. I even wrote up this rather pathetic synopsis of the said show and VERY brief character descriptions.

The title of the project was to be called "School is Hell."

Basic plot:

Daria Faust make a pact with the devil (who is the school's janitor) to gain popularity and the boy of her dreams.

Yeah, that's it. Sounds like Nickelodeon will be banging on my door, huh?

Daria Faust: Sophomore at Marlowe High School. Quiet, bookwormish, pretty, but she hasn't quite hit that point where the boys are beginning to notice her.

Angela Munroe: Her best friend. Sweet and very cautious. Doesn't want to rock the boat with anything.

Kevin Perry: The obligatory boy who has a crush on Daria. Could see some interesting things happening to him once the series gets going. Perhaps he is a warlock?

Will Wilde: The captain of the sports team. Daria's crush. Not really a jock ass, but just more unaware of things. He shouldn't be a jerk.

Lew: The school janitor (in reality, The Devil)

Patty Belladonna: Daria's goth friend.

Landon Tray: Will's best friend. The stereotypical jock.

Katee Key: Cheerleader. Will's girlfriend. Very stereotypical "mean girl."

Kelly Leonard: Cheerleader. Friend to Katee. A bit ditzy, but really actually sweet.

Dr. Boswell:  Principal of Marlowe High School.

Mr. Depaldi: Music teacher at Marlowe High School.

Miss Hackett: Guidance Counselor at Marlowe High School.

ANNND that's it. That's all. No more. I don't know how to even begin to write this thing.

I have ideas for movies, tv shows, music video, etc., but I don't have the talent to write them. Or maybe it is the patience. Or the imagination. I don't know. I just know I have an idea, write it down, then put it in a drawer.

Does that make me an idea man? 

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Sausages, Sandwiches, and Sealing Wax.

Today, my family and I took a little trip at my suggestion.

I am a great fan of a certain sausage made by Kahn's called "Big Red Smokies." For the uninitiated these sausages are about the size of a hot dog, but are packed with all kinds of flavor! I grew up on them as a kid and a trip to see the Cincinnati Reds play is not complete without consuming at least one of these. 

In the last few years, our local supermarkets have carried these sporadically and my wife and got them whenever we could. Well, in the last year, we noticed that they no longer carried them. We drove to nearby communities. No such luck. I finally wrote to Kahn's and received a prompt reply that we could only get this childhood favorite in two towns, both about an hour away.

Today, we made the trip to one of the towns, an old favorite of mine called Greenville, OH. Let's just say, we bought plenty!

My wife also suggested that we make a visit to an institution (No! Not that sort, although I know a lot of people think I belong in one!) of Greenville...The Maid-Rite Sandwich Shop! Now, I won't go into the history of the place because you can read it here....Maid-Rite History.  I will tell you I went with sort of low expectations. Their claim to fame is a loose meat sandwich which is sort of sweet and I think has a little bit of spicy kick at the end. I was afraid that the bun would be sopping wet (I HATE wet buns). Most people eat these sandwiches with mustard, onion, and pickles. I prefer my sandwiches plain (even hamburgers) All I have to say is "WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN ALL MY LIFE!? These things are fantastic!!! We ate them up and ordered more to take back home! I've never done that with a sandwich before!
Oh, if you go there (and you really should!) don't forget to indulge in a time honored tradition! Put a wad of chewed up gum on the outside of the building! Like me!

One final thing. Please visit this quaint town. It is about to close to Mayberry as you will ever get. Beautiful homes, a park that is simply gorgeous, and a vibrant and viable downtown area! It is also the home to a great Kitchen-Aid store (they make KA appliances there) and the Garst Museum, where you can see a great exhibit on Annie Oakley (who my great-grandmother knew!) A lovely, lovely town that you should not miss! Some great shops in the downtown area!

A little picture of the park...

Well, that's today's blog. Hope you enjoyed it!

Friday, July 4, 2014

Making Up Titles is Difficult.

Still not sure about the direction I'm going with this blog. I do know that I may have a tendency to ramble.

I don't want this blog to become "The Place Where Todd Bitches About How Unhappy He Is At The Moment" kind of places.  I feel like that the world is already filled with too much negativity. Why contribute. Yes, I'll have my good and bad days, but why completely share that with the world?

I found a new obsession and her name is Siobhan Thompson.
She is a British comic and actor who you can see in the Anglophenia websites videos. Not only is she funny, but she is also adorable. A quirky, nerdy girl who seems to have a sense of humor very similar to my own.  You really should check the videos out on YouTube (a site that I should have stock in because I watch way too much of it.  Here's a link to Anglophenia on said site: Anglophenia TV on YouTube It's quite good. And I think you will fall in love with Siobhan.

Hmm what else can I write about? Oh, I have been messing around with the idea of writing a play for some time. It is about two of my favorite writers, Dorothy Parker and Robert Benchley. If you don't know who they are, then you need to read up on the Algonquin Round Table. Go ahead, here's a link. I'll wait. The Algonquin Hotel's Write Up. And go ahead and read Wikipedia's article as well: Wikipedia Article on The Round Table. I just don't know how to get started on it. Oh muse of theatre, help me....

Well, that's about it for now. Told you this blog may be random. I think I may have read too much James Joyce, William Faulkner, and Sylvia Plath. Maybe a little to much T.S. Eliot as well. But, how can you read too much Eliot?!?

Oh, and Happy Independence Day, everyone!

Sunday, April 21, 2013


So, I've been thinking about restarting this blog. A lot of friends have been giving me ideas about what to do and I think I'm just going be completely random with this blog.

I've been so busy and haven't been able to really devote any time to this blog for some time, so, let's start anew.

Hi. I'm Todd. I'm a middle school Language Arts teacher and H.S. Student Publications teacher. I used to teach theatre at my previous schools. I'm married and have one child.

My interests are really varied.

I'm an actor on the  side. I've just finished performing as Vernon Gersh in the musical, "They're Playing Our Song." I've also played the role of King Arthur (of the Britons) in "Spamalot." Other roles include Felix Unger in "The Odd Couple" and Ebnezer Scrooge in "Scrooge: The Musical." I am taking a break for now, but I'll be back.
My favorite music is new wave from the 80's, but I also like many other types (particularly jazz) The only kinds of music I'm not fond of are rap and country and western. Oh, and anything released by Journey.  Really. I can't stand Journey.

Foodwise, I'm pretty dull in my likes. I am very Midwestern in my tastes. Don't get me wrong. I have had lots of different kinds of cuisines. Just not many. For example, I live less than a block from an Indian restaurant and have never eaten at it. We have three Thai restaurants and I've never visited a one of them. I love Amish food.

Hmm, what else? I love horror movies, but not the kind of "horror porn" that is popular today. Not that there is anything wrong with it. It's just not my thing. I prefer British Horror films and by that I mean Hammer Horror and their competitors.  Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee are icons to me. Universal horror films and the works of American International Pictures. I also like cheesy films but not necessarily ones that insult the viewers intelligence.

I also love the glamor of old Hollywood. Films with class and distinction. William Powell, Myrna Loy, Cary Grant, Rosalind Russell,  Louise Brooks, Charlie Chaplin. Classics one and all!

I'm also interested in old television shows. All kinds with the exception of westerns. I never really got into those for some reason. And I really like British shows. All kinds.

I also like pin-up art. Particularly the works of Alberto Vargas and Gil Elvgren. Playful but sexy, but not crass.

I'm also a HUGE fan of magic. Particularly grand illusions. Things like making cars disappear, sawing a lady in half, stuff like that.

For some reason, cos-play fascinates me.

So, this is the new beginning to "This Life in Progress." I welcome your suggestions, questions, and comments.  Let's play, shall we?

Sunday, March 24, 2013

New (WAVE) Direction

I've decided that I'm going to focus on posting videos from the New Wave Era of the 80's. So what is my criteria. Well, I'm going to take someone else's list of the 100 greatest New Wave bands of the 80's and post my favorite music by that artist. If I don't like the artist, then I'll either substitute another artist that doesn't appear on the list that I like, or another song that I really like by an artist on the list.
I've been doing something like this on Facebook for sometime but there are some that don't like it, so I'm going to do it here on my blog and direct people to come to it so if they want to witness some great new wave music, they may do so.
Also, I don't want to blow up people's walls. I'm considerate like that.

Oh, ended up doing this on my Pinterest wall.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Not A Lot

I've really not had much to blog about lately. Finally got high speed internet in the house and wi-fi. That has been a big improvement.
I honestly don't have anything I want to talk about. Sorry about that.