Open Your Toys Cast – Episode 144: Let’s Get it Started…

As I reveal on the show, I have graduated from my Full Stack Web Development Immersive. 480 hours of in-class time with over 400 hours of homework in 3 months. It was no joke. I took a couple weeks off, but now its time to get serious. My only major obstacle is ageism. I didn’t think it existed and I do think it is just surface, however, it affects what you do. Take the title of this article. Sing it to yourself. I almost guarantee most people sing Black Eye Peas anthem from 2003. I sing MC Hammer’s 1988 debut single. That’s right 2 Legit 2 Quit may have been the break out hit, then Can’t Touch This took him to icon level, but Let’s Get it Started is where it began. This is how I feel about my work. If you knew where it came from it would blow your mind. However, compared to modern-day counterparts, it looks dated. That’s about to change. So what am I getting started? I am using my experience to set me apart not hold me back.

Companies are finally learning from their experience. Hasbro Toy Shop has finally listed their SDCC exclusives months in advance of the on-sale date that they also specified. Only took them 15 years to figure that out. Hasbro/Takara also seem to be learning from their past. The new MP Optimus Prime looks amazing. How many versions of it to you foresee buying? Super7 is a quick a learner as well. They have been fine-tuning their MOTU messaging through their He-Man.org Q and A. Unfortunately, to a point where they’re pretty much useless. A company that has never learned their lesson is FunPub. There’s not even a link on their site, but they have delayed their first FSS 7 shipment supposedly due to US Customs. Yet, they are delaying it for almost two months. JoeCon ran just as unsmoothly as usual as well. Considering this is their last year, I guess they’ll never learn.

Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it…Slick

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Open Your Toys Cast – Episode 143: Oblivious…

I tend to pride myself on being considerate… and, I mean to an annoying degree. That is why it is upsetting when people are less so. We experience this in many ways. When driving you should be making every attempt to not alter another driver’s course. There are exceptions like merging, but not many more. Now think, how many times was your course altered this morning or worse, how many times did you alter another driver’s course? Being oblivious can be even more frustrating when it comes to social or emotional cues. Especially when people are just going on and on and I’m making every attempt to show how uninterested I am (in the politest way), please take the hint. The worst one, in my opinion, is hurting someone’s feelings. I am guilty of doing this over and over with Mrs. McFavorite. I would never want to intentionally hurt her, but quite frequently I say something very insensitive. I tend to hope that it just means that we are oblivious to these indiscretions, not that it makes it any better. However, it is better than thinking that we all are actively being inconsiderate to the people around us.

So many things to ensure that you’re not oblivious to. First, The Toys That Made Us is killing it. Their TF episode wasn’t perfect, but it was great. Something that has never been perfect, but I haven’t hated is the Joe movieverse. Looks like it will continue. MOTU had some great reveals of its own in the form of a couple new Mega Construx sets. EE has those and quite a bit of other MOTU items I was oblivious to. Finally, Lando is someone that was never a focus of mine, but his Skiff Guard disguise is something I couldn’t ignore. Okay, that was a stretch.

Just remember to pull your head out of your ass…Slick

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Open Your Toys Cast – Episode 142: I Love You Man…

There are all different kinds of love. Some so amazing they are life changing and some we just want to forget. Shared experiences can shape what kind of feelings you have for someone. Being part of a family or a job where you’re on a close-knit team forces you to become intensely intertwined with a multitude of diverse people. Your shared experiences really remind you what kind of person you connect with. For some, you will simply feel no connection. They are there and then gone. Some are fun, make you laugh and you like being around. Then there are the ones at both ends of the spectrum. At the wrong end are people you could go your whole life with never seeing again. No matter how hard you have tried, something or maybe multiple things just rub you the wrong way. And that’s okay. What you need to focus on are the people you never want to lose. Those people you truly want to hold onto, not for what they can do for you, but because they make you a better person. Do you have people like that in your life? If not, that’s okay. They’re out there, just don’t stop looking.

Does that remind you of anything? Maybe collecting? Maybe how you feel about certain pieces in your collection? Okay, that may be a stretch. Something I have never stopped looking for is the perfect version of Leia as Boushh. Is it weird I thought she was sexier as a bad-ass bounty rather than a submissive swimsuit model? This Legends-scale thing in Transformers seems to be neverending. However, I’ll never ask anyone to stop making Magnus figures. Something that is stopping is this FSS thing. I love Joe, I mean really love Joe, but how many of these characters do we need modern/$35 versions of? The Master’s movie seems unstoppable, even if some of us wish it would.

Don’t stop believin’…Slick

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Open Your Toys Cast – Episode 141: I Hate Wasting…

Insert whatever you want at the end of that title. I tend to think it’s whatever we feel we don’t have enough of or that we think we may run out of. That could be food, maybe water, even opportunities. There are some universals out there. I don’t think anyone likes wasting money. I guess unless you have so much you can derive joy from getting rid of it, but there’s probably something deeper going on there.

Now people’s idea of wasting money can vary considerably. For one person it could be a material item. I remember my mom constantly saying, “don’t wast your money on that”. For another person, it may be extravagant dinners or for another, it may be as simple as buying store brands because they feel it is just as good the name brand. I think I have found my balance. I am super frugal (i.e. cheap), but I know when it’s worth buying the name brand or when to splurge on a great meal. If you’re listening to our podcast, then you know I got the material item thing down. Well, from a certain point of view.

The one thing at my age that I am still trying to find balance with is time. I have so many things on my life’s to-do list, that when something wastes my time it can be infuriating. Now if you combine that with money, you have a recipe for disaster. I’m usually a pretty emotionally stable guy. Never going too high, but never hitting rock bottom either. However, if something or worse yet, someone, is wasting my time and my money we got problems. I tend to go through a mini 5-Steps of Grief. Denial that my time and money are being wasted. Anger that my time and money got wasted. Trying to make myself feel better by bargaining or rationalizing that it’s not a big deal. Not feeling any better and giving into depression. Finally accepting that money and time have been wasted and trying to move on.

Something I didn’t waste any time or money on was the Solo toy drop that happened with barely a whisper from the community. If you’re hunting, Yakface.com did waste some time making a checklist just for you. For some, stop-motion animation may feel like a complete waste of time, especially considering it takes on average an hour to film one second. I really love it and I’m excited that a Joe stop-motion film festival is debuting in my hometown. Hopefully, something that is not a waste of time and money is Super7 being back in China doing QC reviews of the Power-Con Filmation exclusives. Our first taste wasn’t great. With these coming in just under $200 (with tax, shipping and handling) for three figures, they had better be on point. Looks like Takara wasted an opportunity with their Encore God Fire. This $270 abomination is being recalled due to some serious QC issues. Sorry for the longer than usual diatribe this time around, let’s not waste any more of your time.

I got 99 problems, but a podcast ain’t one…Slick

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Open Your Toys Cast – Episode 140: Don’t Be Down on Yourself…

There are enough exterior forces in this world working against you. The last thing anyone needs is to contribute to them. Life is hard enough. Why would you ever want to help it by thinking you’re anything but amazing? Now, of course, we have all things we would like to change about ourselves. Change is hard. Many times it is so much easier to maintain the status quo. The key is to not come down on yourself even if you’re not killing it. Be happy with small steps, hold your head high when you stumble and never, I mean never, give up. Tomorrow is always another day, another chance to be the you you want to be.

I guess there is always another day, unless your Toys”R”Us. Their last day is coming. We talk about what that means and what the first day of the liquidation looked like. IDW’s Transformers run is also coming to an end. It’s a conclusion to an era and I’m excited for the next incarnation. Another thing that is approaching its last day is G.I. Joe Collectors’ Club. You can now purchase their last incentive figure. Something that looks like it has many days to come is HasLab. Their flagship product has been back by over 5,000 people. The Star Wars 3.75 community came together and crowdfunded a 2.5 million dollar project. Another thing that continues to have its day is Power-Con. This small but passionate convention consistently brings it and this year is no different. 3 Filmation exclusives are coming our way. They definitely have the power.

Excited to be the me I want to be, well, almost…Slick

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