The purpose of this blog is to have a little fun. It is NOT to start arguments. I don't profess to be an expert on Sci-fi, nor do I aspire to become an expert. You are welcome to comment on any and all content you find here. If my opinion differs from yours, as far as I am concerned, it's all okay. I will never say that you are wrong because you disagree with me, and I expect the same from those that comment here. Also, my audience on the blog will include some young people. Please govern your language when posting comments.

Posts will hopefully be regular based on the movies I see, the television shows I watch, and the books I read as well as what ever strikes me as noteworthy.

Spoilers will appear here and are welcome.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

My Sci-Fi World...

Hello again...

Things have been pretty busy lately, so I haven't had a great deal of time to do many scifi activities.  However, I am continuing to watch the 4th season of Star Trek Voyager, and am enjoying it as always.  I am also continuing to read the Star Trek New Frontier novel After the Fall by Peter David.  I'm on chapter 5 as of today.

After the Fall is the 15th book in the series.  In all of the books before, the new ones started off at almost the moment the previous ones ended.  This one however begins after a gap of three years from the previous novel entitled Stone and Anvil.  What makes this one so interesting at this point is to see the changes that have taken place during the three year gap in the story line.  There are promotions, changes in relationships, and some new characters appearing.  It is really neat how one can become so involved in a group of fictitious characters and actually wonder at and care about what is happening to them.

As I have said before, this is a series of books that is great to read.  Awesome characters, great stories, and well worth the investment of time.

I have managed to keep up on most of my favorite podcasts and am currently listening to Trek News and Views episode number 55.  The topic for this Colin's entry this week is time travel.  Specifically the Star Trek Enterprise episodes that involve Crewman Daniels and the Temporal Cold War.  I'm only about 20 minutes into it, but will listen to the rest on my drive home this afternoon.  It is an interesting discussion so far.

Yesterday I listened to another episode of the Life After Trek podcast.  Capt. Pyke and Crewman Becky interview two of what I consider to be the greatest Trek stars of all time.  Those being J.G. Hertzler and Robert O'Reiley.  Hertzler played the role of the Klingon character General Martok on Deep Space Nine as well as numerous other personalities in the Trek universe.  Not only that, he was also in one episode of another favorite series of mine, Highlander.  O'Reiley played the infamous Chancellor Gowron on both Next Generation and Deep Space Nine.

Robert O'Reiley

Chancellor Gowron
J. G. Hertzler

General Martok
 Also, the host site for Life After Trek, Subspace Communique also posted a story that is a brief Synopsis of the upcoming Star Trek film, Into Darkness.  You can read that synopsis by clicking HERE.

The Sci-Fi Diner Podcast posted a new episode of their Conversations show.  This is #70 in this series.  I have not had a chance to listen to it yet, but will be doing so in the morning as I drive to work.  Scott and Miles have plugged this blog on that show as one can see on the Diner's website.  I was also invited to appear on another edition of the SciFi Rewind where a movie is picked apart by Scott, Miles, and a guest which will be me in in a couple of months or so.  I am not going to give any details beyond that.  You can go to the Diner's website and download the last Rewind I was on, Total Recall.  I think it was a pretty good show if I do say so myself.

In Other News...

I have begun watching Fringe for the first time on the Science Channel.  Isn't it amazing that a channel that is supposed to be devoted to science fact is delving into the world of science fiction?  Hmmm, perhaps SyFy might think about giving that a try...

But I digress.  Anyway, a few weeks ago while watching something on the Science Channel, I caught a commercial that announced that Fringe was to begin broadcasting on Tuesday, November 20th, which I did.  I made sure to get my DVD+R machine all ready to record the pilot and first episode of season one.  All went well there and I enjoyed both shows and planned to watch more.

Later, I noticed that there was a Fringe Marathon scheduled for Friday and Saturday.  I didn't do anything with this thinking that Science would show all of the episodes in order on Tuesday nights.  So, on this past Tuesday night, I again set my machine to record the next three episodes.  Last night, I sat down in the Lazy Boy to watch at least the first episodes that were recorded.  Well, I was really dismayed to learn that I had not recorded the next three shows from season one that I had expected, but I had gotten three season two episodes.  I am not happy!

Is it any wonder why I DESPISE commercial television?  I have very limited time to watch TV, and when I do, I don't want to screw around with the idiotic scheduling that goes on.

Anyway, I did a little research and found that as an Amazon Prime member, I can stream Fringe for free.  Guess what Science Channel: Goodbye.  The reason I want to watch Fringe is because Scott and Miles of the SciFi Diner talk about it all the time on their shows, but at the same time, they also mention that this show is NOT for children.  Who in their right mind would schedule an all day marathon of a show that might traumatise little kids.  With an eight year old in the house, I am certainly not going to have Fringe on while she is playing with Barbies on the living room floor.  Think about it Science Channel!  Geez.

Science Fact...

This morning and yesterday morning, I was witness to an event that never ceases to fascinate me.  I got to see a fly-over of the International Space Station.  I knew exactly when it would be overhead and got some great views as the ISS passed directly over the school I teach in.  How did I know this was going to happen you might ask?  Well I subscribed to a website at NASA that sends me the times and locations of Station fly-overs.  You can do that too by going to and following the very easy instructions that asks for your location and your e-mail address.  Give it a try.

One More Thing...

Thursday evenings is the night that Chrissy (my daughter) has her piano lesson.  Tonight was also the night that Kearney (where I live) decided to have some to-dos downtown for Christmas.  Now you might be asking, what does this have to do with Sci-Fi?  Well, I think it falls under the heading of Abnormal Psychology.  You see, there were hundreds of people roaming the streets.  There was absolutely no parking left anywhere as people walked the sidewalks and tried to get free hot chocolate, popcorn, and whatever else might be available.  What strikes me as funny, is that the same people that were walking up and down the street, smiling, waving, exchanging good holiday wishes, and generally spreading cheer; these same people who were all about peace on Earth and good will toward their fellow man on this Thursday night, were the very same people that were ready to beat the crap out of each other last Thursday night at Wal-Mart to get a laptop for $279!

We're all for Peace on Earth, just stay out of my way on Black Friday!

'Nuff Said!

Well, there it is.

Next time, I will write about my holiday wish list, and share some of the items that make decorating for Christmas fun.


Monday, November 26, 2012

Hello Everyone...

Welcome to my Sci-Fi Blog. My name is Jim and I have been thinking about doing this for some time. Professionally, I am a music teacher at Kenesaw Public School in central Nebraska. I enjoy most things that are science fiction, but mostly those things that are related to space. I also enjoy learning about science fact as well, again mostly things that are related to space. I frequently watch the NASA Channel. As you might guess, my love for sci-fi stems from a love for Star Trek. I am a Trekkie, through and through, and am very proud of it, even though it is often a source of ridicule for many people I know and work with. With this in mind, I really want to connect with others that share my love for Star Trek, Star Wars, or Star-anything. Thanks to the Internet and the advent of podcasting, I have been able to do just that.

So I will start this first post with a few facts about myself. I own every episode of all of the Star Trek series (including the animated series) as well as all of the movies. I love them all, including Voyager and Enterprise. And yes I do like the opening song for the Enterprise series. I also collect other series as I find deals on them. So I also have Firefly, Space Above and Beyond, Babylon 5, Battlestar Galactica, and Starhunter. I also have some that are not really sci-fi like the Highlander series and Alien Nation. I cycle through all of these in no particular order over and over again and never really get tired of them. Much of what I plan to blog will deal with these series. I also have a number of movies on DVD and Blue Ray, way too many to go into right now. After all, this is a blog, not a dissertation.

I also enjoy reading books on my Kindles and listening to audio books too. Not all of what I read and listen to is sci-fi related. For instance, I am currently listening to Les Miserables by Victor Hugo. But I have also just started reading another Star Trek novel by Peter David. It is one of his New Frontier series of novels entitled Missing in Action. If you're looking for something fun to read that is set in the Trek universe, but with fresh new characters, the New Frontier series is a good place to start.

I have to give credit where credit is due, and that is the inspiration for doing this blog. Thanks to the people who produce the podcasts that I listen to on a regular basis including...

The Sci-Fi Diner Podcast: Scott and Miles host this podcast that appears on a mostly weekly basis. They talk about all things sci-fi, have some fantastic interviews with some major figures from the sci-fi world, and review a number of movies and television shows. They have a main show that is up to episodes numbering in the 150's at this point. But that's not all! They also host a separate show called the Sci-Fi Diner Conversations where they welcome comments from listeners and offer feedback to the feedback from those of us who listen. I have been privileged to appear on the Conversations show a number of times as my alter ego - Kahless. But wait, there's more. There is also the Sci-Fi Rewind show where Scott, Miles and a guest host take a single movie and pick it apart. These are some very interesting shows and have the potential of giving one a new way to look at films. Some of the more memorable Rewinds include Star Trek II: The Wrath of Kahn, Logan's Run, Starship Troopers, and the one that I was honored to be included in as a guest host for the Rewind of Total Recall. They also put out the Sci-Fi Diner Classic in which they replay interviews they have had in the past. Where Scott and Miles find the time to do this is beyond my comprehension, but thanks to the love they have for the genre, they continue to find the time and put out a very high quality and professional sounding show.

Colin from England produces the Trek News and Views podcast. This podcast, devoted to Star Trek has a variety of fascinating things happening. Recently, Colin turned over his show to the girls and they scored an interview with none other than Robert Duncan McNeill, aka Tom Paris of Voyager. He also produced an outstanding show from his Star Trek London experience and played clips from talks given by several stars of Trekdom. Colin and his guests, which are many, do show reviews and discuss numerous aspects of trek such as time travel. Trek News and Views is an intelligent and well thought out show that I look forward to hearing every week.

David, Daren and Alicia produce Trekcast: The Star Trek Podcast Which I can only describe as the Star Trek Rock & Roll Podcast. These guys and girl are a scream to listen to and you never know what you will get next. They have recently returned to podcasting from a one year hiatus from podcasting as real life got in the way. This is a high energy show full of passion for Star Trek. You just have to listen to understand what this one is about. It is more fun than should be legal!

Captain Pyke and Crewman Becky host their blog Subspace Communique which touts to be a source for "Trek Culture Served Daily."  There is always interesting news on this blog and it is also a way to find their podcast called "Life After Trek."  It is a collection of some of the best interviews with former Trek cast members you'll ever hear.  This one is just what the title says it is, what is happening with the stars of Trek since the shows have stopped airing.  You get some interesting insight on the personalities they interview.

Last, but most certainly not least, is the crew of Starbase 66.  Rick, Karen, Kennedy, and most recently UNKK take a look at many things from the sci-fi and fantasy world.  This was the first podcast I started listening to and has been one of the best.  If you are looking for a unique perspective on movies, comic books, and many, many other subjects, I urge you to check this one out.  By the way, that UNKK guy is a NASA employee and occasionally he will give descriptions of what is going on at the Kennedy Space Center that are so vivid, you could almost picture them.

So, there it is, my first sci-fi blog ever.  I hope it isn't my last.  As always, please feel free to leave comments.