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Saturday, January 22, 2011

The Rocky Horror CHIKARA Show?

wBelieve it or not, the demographics of these two fandoms are more similar than you may think. I mean, just look at me. I love both. I fit the bill perfectly. And I've met others who fit the bill as well. Case in point, a gent by the name of Joey Daly who I first got to know over the summer at CHIKARA's annual Young Lions' Cup tournament. Eventually through talking it came up that not only were we also fans of Rocky Horror, but were also part of shadow-casts that perform along with the movie at midnight showings.

Which brings me to my main point, the big similarity between the Rocky Horror fan base and the CHIKARA fan base is the massive amount of audience participation that can be seen at their respective events. The huge difference being that CHIKARA is promoted as "family friendly sports entertainment" and they take that label very seriously. I'm quite certain that 75-80% of the things said at a Rocky Horror showing would get one kicked out of a CHIKARA event without refund. But that doesn't mean the crowd sits mute while attending a CHIKARA show. I think Joey summed it up nicely, "While CHIKARA frowns on profanity and Rocky doesn't, both praise creativity in cheers, and as with the live version of Rocky, it's always a little impressive when you can get the performers to acknowledge you. Bonus points if they don't know how to respond."

My thoughts exactly. At both Rocky Horror showings and CHIKARA event, there are standard set responses and reactions to some situations. At a Rocky Horror showing, any time Brad Majors' name is mentioned, the audience responds by yelling "Asshole!" At a CHIKARA event, when Icarus makes his entrance it is standard operating procedure to boo him loudly and at length as he makes his way to the ring. A chant of "Worst in the world!" directed towards him during the match is also appropriate and encouraged. At a Rocky Horror showing when it's time to do the Time Warp, you get up and do the Time Warp! There is no exception to this rule. At a CHIKARA show, when UltraMantis Black makes his way to the ring you must stand and pay homage to him by bowing, otherwise you will meet your DOOOOOOOOOOOOM!!!!!!!!

And believe it or not, props aren't uncommon sights at either show. At a typical Rocky Horror showing it's not uncommon to be showered with rice, confetti, toilet paper, toast and playing cards as the evening progresses. There's a team in CHIKARA called Los Ice Creams. They are a pair of ice cream men, and I don't mean the kind who drive around in a Mister Softee truck. What you have here are living, breathing, walking men made of ice cream. Occasionally fans bring containers of sprinkles which the Ice Creams have used as weapons against their opponents in the past. Trust me, it makes sense in context. It's been a common practice in Japan for fans to throw streamers in the ring to show support for a particular wrestler. This has become increasingly more common at CHIKARA shows within the past year. The streamers flying around do sort of conjure up the image of the flying toilet paper at Rocky Horror showings, so the parallels are becoming even more apparent.

Lastly, I'd like to briefly touch on Joey's point about being acknowledged for your participation and the performers not knowing how to respond. Joey told me about a time where he yelled to a wrestler named Delirious if he'd "pin [his] opponent for a Scooby Snack". Not that Delirious probably would've had much of a response since his character is that he mumbles and yells rather incoherently whenever he has something to say. Another great moment dealing with props at a CHIKARA show occurred at one of the shows at Young Lions Cup weekend this past summer. Alex, another up-standing guy I've met through attending CHIKARA shows, brought a small flock of rubber ducks to a show. The reason, these were props to cheer on "Lightning" Mike Quackenbush whose nickname - not surprisingly - is "Quack". As Mike and his partner Jigsaw made their entrance for a match that evening, Jigsaw was the first to spot the ducks and pointed them out to Quack. Not that we'd be hard to find since we were sitting in the front row. But seeing Mike Quackenbush crack up as he realized what we had done, that was a really entertaining and gratifying moment. And, why not, I'll finish this paragraph with an example of me not knowing how to respond to a crowd. Near the end of the movie, the Criminologist - the character I usually play - has the line "What diabolical plan had seized Frank's crazed imagination?" One of the audience responses to this line I had heard (and used) in the past was "What diabolical chicken stepped on your forehead and shit on your necktie?" So one night, I'm performing, we get to this moment and I hear someone else from my cast yell this line out from the audience. And even though I knew the line was coming, for whatever reason it took me by surprise and I completely broke character, laughing silently at the line. Happens to the best of us, hehe.

If you're a Rocky Horror fan, I highly suggest you come to a CHIKARA show. I know there are a lot of Rocky Horror fans in Northeast PA, specifically in the Scranton area. There's a show in Easton, which is only about an hour away from Scranton, on February 20th at 4:00. I promise it'll be a very enjoyable 3 hours of entertainment if you don't have anything else going on that afternoon. Check out for more details.

If you're a CHIKARA fan, definitely check out a showing of The Rocky Horror Picture Show sometime. By doing some searching on Google, I'm sure you'll be able to find a showing some weekend in your area. And if you want to see my cast perform... for now, I know our next date is October 29th in East Stroudsburg, PA. Come check us out if you get the chance. And if any other dates come up in the meantime, I'll certainly let you know about it.

CHIKARA's Season 10 Premiere is Sunday, January 23rd in Philadelphia. As the Premiere looms on the horizon, I'll close with this last observation from Joey Daly, "Those of us who are drawn to Rocky or Wrestling usually have to keep that part a little hidden, because of the cultural stigma attached to it. Thus when we all get together there is a release as we get to revel in our chosen activities amongst people who won't judge us for it." I guess the general rule of all fandoms can be summed up from the "moral" or Rocky Horror, "Don't dream it, be it."

Monday, January 17, 2011

Settlers Of Catan New Version Board Game - Sponsored Post

Settlers Of Catan New Version Board Game - Sponsored Post
I've played the XBOX Live Arcade version and it's pretty fun.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Nintendo Wii Fit Plus Bundle with Balance Board, 2 Games and Accessories - Sponsored Post

Nintendo Wii Fit Plus Bundle with Balance Board, 2 Games and Accessories - Sponsored Post
I love using my Wii Fit. I've got to get back into the habit of using it much more regularly. Why not try it yourself?

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Snow... ugh.

So Central PA recieved a significant amount of snowfall last night. And frankly, I couldn't possibly be less pleased. If the snow had completely passed us by, I'd have been absoultely fine with that. If we only got a dusting, I guess I'd be OK with that also. But no snow is much more preferred.

Last year during the painfully, brutal winter we had, someone asked me why I disliked the snow so much. Now in their defense, the person asking me this was still in college. So the possibility of classes being delayed by a few hours or cancelled outright was still a reality for them. I, however, have been out of school for close to five years now. I work in retail. The concept of the snow day is dead to me. Now when it snows my inner monologue no longer says "All right, a day off! Sweet!" Instead, it gripes, "Dammit, now I have to shovel the driveway, shovel the sidewalk, dig out the mailbox if necessary and drive to and from work in this crap!" And it wasn't just recently this change took place. The first winter after I graduated from college and the snow fell... instant change of mind. What a difference a few months made.

My brother and I got all the shoveling taken care of,  the roads are apparently pretty well plowed and the sun is actually out. So maybe things will start to melt off a little today. Although, the weather says the temperature is still in the 20s so that might be out of the realm of possibility. Though as long as the roads are manageable, I should be able to get to and from work just fine this afternoon/evening. Although I'd much rather not have to deal with roads and snow in tandem, but I guess there's not much I can do about that at this point.

And despite this diatribe against the snow, please be careful if you're in an overly snowy area and need to travel anywhere.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Frazoo - Sponsored Post

Frazoo - Sponsored Post
The new wikipedia like search engine . Give it a look, it's pretty interesting.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

More Thoughts On Today's Pop Music

SPOILER ALERT: Once again, I don't have anything good to say about it. I'll be focusing on songs and artists that I was unfortunate enough to be subjected to over and over again during the course of the past year. And I thank the Billboard magazine website for providing a year-end chart for me to reference since I couldn't be bothered to know most of these artists or titles by memory.
Jason Derulo  

The one thing I noticed about his songs, besides how awful I thought they were, is that he always seems to namedrop himself not long into the beginning of song. No set-up, no context, just out of nowhere you hear "Jason Derulo!" Can you imagine how annoying that would be if it bled over to other media with people just randomly shouting out their name? Horrible!

"Cooler Than Me" by Mike Posner

OK, where to start with --

Chris McGuinness! (See what I mean?)

Now, where to start with this song? On the off-chance you're lucky enough to be unfamiliar with this song, the idea is he's singing to a girl who ignores him because he says "you think you're cooler than me." Well Mr. Posner, I don't think I'm cooler than you. I know I'm cooler than you. I'm not singing some stupid song like this on the radio.

"Like A G6" by Far*East Movement

Basic summary of the song, "Let's get wasted by drinking cough syrup with codeine". What a waste of a song. The only redeeming quality - and I use that term very loosely - this song has is one of my co-workers misheard the lyric as "Like a cheese stick". Honestly, a song about a cheese stick would be more enjoyable for me to listen to compared to this garbage.

"O.M.G." by Usher

Ugh, this song. I'll sum it up by quoting a thought I had read but sadly can not remember the source, "Just because you can rhyme 'booty' with 'boobies' doesn't mean you should". I'm no songwriter, but I can't help but agree wholeheartedly with this sentiment.

"Club Can't Handle Me" by Flo Rida

And why is that? Because you're being drunk and disorderly? Moving on.

"Rude Boy" by Rhianna

A friend of mine posted this on his Twitter when this song first became popular, "Every time I sing 'Rude Boy' by Rhianna I can't help but feel kinda gay, lol."  Well, the song wasn't written to be sung by a guy. In fact, I question why this song was even written at all. 

Justin Bieber

Honest to God, I do not understand the appeal. Actually... maybe I do. Let's try an experiment here. If you are a fan of Justin Bieber, I want you to picture him in your mind. OK, picture him singing and actually hear him sing. Got that? OK, good. Now on to the second part of this experiment. Continue hearing whatever Justin Bieber song you chose in your head. Now, envision me singing it. His voice, my face and body. Now, be honest, how many of you flinched, shuddered or recoiled in horror at that prospect? I rest my case. Since he's considered to be "so cute", he's considered marketable and popular. If he was a  213-pound guy with glasses... not so much. Screw you, shallow general public!

So now that I've got that out of my system, let's look ahead to 2011. I have a feeling I'll be subjected to even more crappy music that lowest common denominator considers "popular". Once again, this is mainly due to the fact that the radio we occasionally have on at my job is seeming eternally tuned to a local Top 40 station. If there is a bright spot to this, at least it'll give me material to blog and rant about.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Western Digital My Passport Essential 320GB Ultra-Portable USB Drive w/ Auto Backup (Silver) - Sponsored Post

Western Digital My Passport Essential 320GB Ultra-Portable USB Drive w/ Auto Backup (Silver) - Sponsored Post
Might be worth looking in to. Anyone have any other advice/suggestions for portable hard drives?