Saturday, November 27, 2010

What is best in life?!!! an excerpt from "The Light Fantastic" by Terry Pratchett

I love this little dig at the Conan the Barbarian movie that Terry Pratchett did in "The Light Fantastic".

"The Barbarian Chieftain said: "What then are the greatest things that a man may find in life? This is sort of thing you're supposed to say to maintain steppe cred in barbarian circles.

The man on his right thoughtfully drank his cocktail of mare's milk and snowcat blood, and spoke thus: "The crisp horizon of the steppe, the wind in your hair, a fresh horse under you."

The man on his left said: "the cry of the white eagle in the heights, the fall of snow in the forest, a true arrow in your bow. "

The chieftain nodded, and said: "Surely it is the sight of your enemy slain, the humiliation of his tribe and the lamentation of his women."

There was a general murmur of whiskery approval at this outrageous display.

The chieftain turned respectfully to his guest, a small figure carefullly warming his chilblains by the fire, and said: "But our guest, whose names is legend, must tell us truly: what is it that a man may call the greatest things in life?"

The guest paused in the middle of another unsuccessful attempt to light up.

"What shay?" he said, toothlessley.

"I said: what is it that a man may call the greatest things in life?"

The warriors leaned closer. This should be worth hearing.

The guest thought long and hard and then said, with deliberation: "Hot water, good dentishtry, and shoft lavatory paper."

Monday, November 1, 2010

A Low Key Gathering of the American Gods

I spent a most memorable weekend this Halloween at the House on the Rock, celebrating Neil Gaiman and his book "American Gods". This was hands down the best Halloween ever! I met some wonderful people and had a surreal time partying in the HOTR with one of my favorite authors and hundreds of fans dressed as their favorite characters from the book.

We checked in on Friday and and got all of our passes and things, we also received copies of the Newbury award winning book "The Graveyard Book"! Then we met up with some old friends and then went the events tent where Neil made his entrance. On stage he read chapter five from American Gods and then took some pre-submitted questions, moderated by Steve Pauson of Wisconsin Public Radio's "To The Best Of Our Knowledge". Later that night Neil revealed that he approved American Gods to be made into a T.V. series but wasn't more elaborate. He said it was a director that he respects and likes his work, but he wasn't one hundred percent sure that it will pan out, so we'll wait and see.

After that Neil Gaiman did a book signing so I got out my hardback copy of American Gods.

(Thanks to Jennifer Sutherland for taking these pictures)

Saturday there were some panels on various subjects and a scavenger hunt but we missed out on those. A weekend without kids means sleeping in, so we opted out for sleep. We did tour the House on the Rock for a couple of hours.

Later that afternoon was the costume contest. There were so many great, imaginative costumes I'll bet it was hard to choose!

And then the House on the Rock was open at night! There was a drawing to see who got the chance to ride the carousel, evidently nobody has ever rode on it before. Unfortunately I didn't win but it was still a great time! We had Christmas dinner in the House on the Rock surrounded by people dressed as characters for the book, a great band was playing in one of the rooms and Neil Gaiman was walking around mingling with everyone. I can't tell you how magical and surreal the whole event was. Unfortunately I had to return to Earth but I'm left with lot's of great memories that will be with me forever.