Since I technically started the BIYF Binge yesterday and the first post from that will happen within the next couple days, this will be the last “Pre-Binge” post and it will be brief.
The master playlist is nearly complete. I’ve mocked up and inserted the one missing item in this screenshot and added signposts for the 6 “live action” events and the 2 “Zardoz has no reference material for this event” events (“The Tim Anderson Experience” Video [Excerpts] and the “Top Ten BIYF Moments” presentation). The list would take 6.9 days to run non-stop, end-to-end.
So, if you look to the right of this post you’ll see that I’ve set a start date for the BIYF Binge. That date is next Monday.
Memorial Day 2016. An appropriate, BIYF-y date.
Following a flurry of posts two weeks ago, I’ve gone to silent running as the nuts-and-bolts reality of the Binge has begun to sink in. I’ve been busy behind the scenes trying to lay the groundwork for (at least initial) success with this project whose scope is actually quite daunting when you start doing the math. I hope I can rely on your patience, understanding and support along the way. It’s a little terrifying and not just because of what I’ll have to watch.
I hope to re-watch as many items as possible from the last 19 BIYF Festivals within a one year span and write something about each of them in a timely fashion. That works out to at least one post every 2-3 days. And I hope to write at least marginally entertaining posts. And brevity is not always something at which I excel. Nor are complete sentences.
Plus, that “at least marginally entertaining” part means I’ll need to spend some time gathering/preparing visual materials to enhance my prose and some more time doing homework to get my facts straight. Or mostly straight. For every post. Daunting. Terrifying.
And ultimately low-stakes in the grand scheme of things, I know. Still, it’s something I’d like to do for us in this landmark year leading up to BIYF XX. Hopefully it will be something you enjoy. Hopefully it will be something I live through.
I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about what will be a suitable model I can use for these posts. In a perfect world I’d like to post a legitimate, stands-on-its-own, readable-by-the-non-BIYF-masses review for each each item. There’s a couple problems with that idea.
First, there’s no way I will be able to sustain that over the timeframe I have and still work a job and live a life. It’s just not a reasonable goal at the pace of a post every 2 or 3 days. That way lies madness, homelessness, starvation, and divorce.
Second, there’s already a ton of reviews of almost everything we’ve watched out there on The Internet just waiting to be found and consumed. While I’d like to think I could produce the ultimate review of the items in our catalog, a lot of the stuff that already exists is really pretty good. Why reinvent the wheel when you can just link to it instead?
Which brings me to my revised, grounded-in-reality goal. Since this whole endeavor is honestly just a nostalgia-based exercise, all I really hope to do is remind you that each of these things on our list exists and that we watched (or in some cases did) them. I’ll try to do this in an entertaining fashion. I’ll provide some facts, some images, some links, some commentary, and whenever possible I’ll attempt to integrate some part of our BIYF history into the narrative. I don’t know how successful I’ll be, but I think this is at least within the realm of the possible.
I hope the “BIYF history” that makes its way into these posts is a shared one, just as the events that produced it have been. I’ll give you my two-cents-worth here, but my best-case-scenario is that you’ll also share your thoughts and memories in the comments. That way, when I work on v2.0 after the Binge (the “permanent” version) it won’t just be a record of my thoughts, but ours.
Thanks in advance for any help you’re able to offer/memories you’re able to add and let me know if you need any help with blog logins or technical issues. I’ve almost accepted my fate and the BIYF Binge will begin shortly.
The BIYF Store is the latest casualty of the ongoing purge surrounding BIYF.com. I’m not sure why, but the CafePress BIYF store has had fatal issues loading and allowing me to edit it despite the other CafePress shops I run being unaffected.
Maybe it’s because it’s a very old CafePress shop on a very old CafePress server (launched in 2004, I believe)… Maybe it’s somehow related to the main BIYF site being compromised… Maybe it’s just coincidence or maintenance or any number of things. Regardless, I currently have very little patience for diagnosing the problem and I’m continuing my “burn it to the ground and start fresh’ approach here.
The former BIYF Classic shop (and URL) is now the new main BIYF store for all your BIYF shopping needs. There aren’t new things available there or anything, but that’s where the new stuff will show up along with classic designs. No more multiple stores.
This “new” shop seems unimpaired by the difficulties the old main shop was suffering from so I’m moving the flag there, culling the old shop (it let me delete it without issue), and calling the issue solved. The link on the landing page at BIYF.com has been updated to reflect the new store URL.
Hopefully this will also solve the problems a few of you were running into with the old store over the last couple years. I had been observing annoyingly slow load times at it for a while, but everything had continued to function when I shopped there. Eventually.
Things seem better with this solution already. For me, anyway. There are other options than CafePress these days if it’s just as slow and unwieldy as before for the rest of you. Please let me know here or via email or Facebook if/when you have problems.
When digital technology was slow & expensive. A novelty…
When Peter Jackson was known for Heavenly Creatures…
When a Lord of the Rings film was less likely than a Star Wars film…
Back in the days of Elgin…
A conversation began and it went something like this:
Craig and Bill need help casting “Lord of the Rings” The Movie. We assume that, in the near future, digital technology will progress to the point where we will be able to cast any actor from any time period, regardless of whether or not s/he is still among the living. Likewise, due to advances in makeup and digital technology, any actor may be cast in any role, regardless of height, etc. In other words, you don’t necessarily have to cast short actors as Hobbits, Dwarfs, Gollum, et. al. No limits have been set, no rules imposed. Only one thing is certain…
Meriadoc “Merry” Brandybuck
Hamfast “The Gaffer” Gamgee
Samwise “Sam” Gamgee
Peregrin “Pippin” Took
young Ricardo Montalban
young Audrey Hepburn
“Raiders” Harrison Ford
Samual L Jackson
James Earl Jones
1960s Teri Garr
young Peter Lorre
Lord of the Nazgul
Mouth of Sauron
Are these choices still the right choices?
Were they ever the right choices?
Do we need to start adding decades to more actors?
(1990s Kenneth Branagh & Emma Thompson?)
What other characters need to be cast?
Do I need to correctly spell names now that we have IMDB?
Do we need images of these actors in these roles to decide?
What do older and wiser heads believe?
Let us know in the comments, but remember the one constant:
Things are quiet at BIYF.com these days. Thanks to some helpful vandals that facilitated “burning down the house” here, there are only a couple things live on the site at the moment. That’s actually OK with me. Not the vandals part, the quiet opportunity for a fresh start part.
As I may have mentioned many times recently, we’re heading toward our 20th BIYF Festival in 2017. That seems like a good time to brush off the cobwebs, take a look around and decide what needs to stay and what can be relegated to backups-only status. Currently, everything is sitting out on the front lawn of the house due to the fire, so it’s mostly a matter of deciding what stuff to bring back into the new house as I build it.
Here’s my thinking on that. Back when we started doing all this, there weren’t all of the options available to the general public for sharing content online that we have today. It was a lot more complicated, time-consuming, and (as amazing as it sounds) there was a lot less content out there. Or at least it seemed like it because it was harder to find and didn’t seek you out of its own accord as is increasingly common today.
I wanted to have a place for us to celebrate us and this weird little ritual of ours that occurs once a year. As time went on this expanded to include a lot of the things that individuals or small groups of us did that I thought were delightful. Appearing on Jeopardy! The B-Squad! Hawkeye Tailgating! Rib Dependence! The Bricker’s new haircut! Michael Caine is Frodo Baggins! Things that made my world a happier place. Lordy, so much fun. You folks are amazing and it was fun to try and venerate that, at least in a small way.
But nowadays, there’s dozens of ways for anyone to do that sort of thing at anytime, anywhere, for free. Plus, the more I diversified and tried to celebrate all our things, the less sustainable it became. And, as such, it wasn’t sustained…
I’m going to try to reduce the scope of BIYF.com to being just about the BIYF Festival and things relating directly to that. Movies, beer, shared memories. That sort of thing. Maybe that way I can get it back on it’s feet and produce something that’s unique again. Something that’s worth revisiting from time to time. That’s still not a small task, but I’m looking at it as a long-term, multi-stage project.
At the moment the only things active at the site are the home page, the “password-protected” landing page, and the Zardoz Speaks to You (Mark II) blog. If you’re still reading this post at this point, you already know the BIYF Binge is coming and will dominate the blog for (at least) the next year. My plan is to eventually gather up the Binge posts related to a given year, combine them with any other available relics from that same year’s BIYF Festival and assemble an online shrine for each year (“onshrine” them?).
I also plan to use the blog to gather feedback not just about your BIYF viewing memories/recurring nightmares during the Binge, but also about your memories of the BIYF Festivals themselves. When I start building the shrines I’ll try to supply blog post prompts for each year as I go. Hopefully we can capture some more of our memories and stories in context before they completely fade into the past.
If you look along the left side of the landing page at BIYF.com, you’ll see a column of numbers beginning with “98.” This is where I’ll begin linking the shrine pages once they actually exist. There won’t be a lot else living here, but I hope we can make what is here fun to revisit from time to time.
I look forward to seeing what happens over the next twelve months. I hope you are as well, but I’ll be satisfied with mild interest. It’s all about managing expectations.
Drink beer! Relive movies vicariously through the blog without being forced to actually watch them again yourself! Comment below if the mood strikes you! Do you still love the Bricker’s haircut? I know I do.
Quite easy, especially since I’m planning on limited consumption during the viewing. Hmm… maybe my “One Beer Per Session” should always be a large bottle…
Plus, I feel like I’ve gotten a pretty good handle on selecting beer over the years. At least at selecting it for me.
Not so much. Also, outside the scope of this experiment.
Man, I haven’t really spent any substantial time with hard alcohol since college and back then it was not a relationship founded on quality. Which means I’ve had to do a little research because my “In Case of Dire Emergency Where One Beer Will Not Be Enough” plan involves mixing a drink using my as-yet-unopened Outer Space vodka. A single drink, to supplement the single beer per session if needed. It sounds so inadequate when I say it aloud.
If the price is any indication (and I’m going to pretend it is, even if it isn’t), the Outer Space vodka should at least be a decent base to work from for a mixed drink. But what mixed drinks should I mix? Fortunately, The Internet is always willing to help:
The Drunken Moogle looks like it will provide me with a good starting point when needed. I can search by an ingredient (such as vodka) and there’s a decent selection of genre-inspired drinks to choose from.
Based on a very brief search, I don’t think I’ll lack for other resources if this one eventually fails me. So many choices.
I’m hoping I won’t have to resort mixing drinks too frequently anyway. I have to ration my supply and save it up for those really challenging slogs later in the marathon. After all, there’s only the one bottle of Outer Space vodka in the house and once it’s gone, it’s gone. It will not be refilled/replaced during the marathon. I’m thinking of it as an emergency health/mana potion.
If you have any favorite vodka drinks that you think should be in my arsenal for this undertaking, please let me know in the comments section. And hurry! I’m running out of delaying tactics and may actually have to start watching things soon!
Well, I was asking for help in delaying the start of the BIYF Binge and The Internet obliged. It was most likely a bot (and not a hot, yet scruffy-looking, Romulan/Vulcan-cosplay-esque “hacker”) that latched onto a vulnerability in an old, unused, and unupdated WordPress installation and uploaded a bunch of crap to the server. It may have been something else entirely, but either way it was invasive enough that I think nuking everything from orbit was the safest and easiest course of action. Really, it’s the only way to be sure. Plus, delay delay delay!
Also, now I can slowly bring back old things and call them NEW again.
And I can post them behind the “member” login off the front page of BIYF.com as I bring them back to screen out search engines and nosy, but lazy, uninvited visitors. If you don’t remember the casual, not-highly-secure screener login to BIYF.com just let me know.
And I can consolidate everything down into a single hosting plan to save a few strips of gold-pressed latinum ever year. It’s been scattered over two plans for many years now for no good reason beyond me not wanting to rewire everything at the site. This is no longer an issue holding me back…
But that’s the future, we’re still in the now! And right now I’m still waiting for a couple last video items (on their way from Rollerballer) and I’m still hoping against hope to find out if any reference materials still exist from the 2006 “The Tim Anderson Experience” video or the 2007 “Top Ten BIYF Moments” presentation. Any news about those last two will be welcome, even if it’s “Nope, all materials pertaining to these two BIYF Viewing Moments have been destroyed to prevent them falling into the wrong hands. Hands such as yours…”
Hopefully I’ll have everything I need and know everything I need to know before Memorial Day Weekend, my tentative start date for the BIYF Binge. Your assistance is very much appreciated.
As mentioned repeatedly in several different venues, all logins for the new blog have been created and sent out. As before, please feel free to change your passwords to your liking. Also, please remember that I’ll have to manually approve your first comment and then you should be able to post comments at will after that.
I’ve been tweaking the layout of the new blog and will likely continue do so. If you’re reading this you’ve probably noticed, but in case you haven’t (or you’re viewing this on a smaller screen) here’s an image that highlights a few of the tweaks currently in place:
It’s good to be back up and running and I’m actually looking forward to doing more stuff here. Honest and for true. I’m amazed I’ve managed to eek out as many posts “about” the BIYF Binge as I have without actually being forced to start the BIYF Binge. Here’s hoping I can keep my streak going and stall for a bit longer!
Thanks again for your patience through this and I look forward to hearing your thoughts here. Once I give you some actual content instead of marking time, of course…
Or if you happen to have any information about the 2006 “The Tim Anderson Experience” video or the 2007 “Top Ten BIYF Moments” presentation…
Addendum (5/11/16): I just noticed the bit pictured to the right doesn’t show up for me when I’m logged in (as I was for the screenshot above). Since it’s not pictured there, I’ll point it out here.
Normally, this is found in the upper part of the left column (above the BIYF Viewing History) and it provides a way to sign up and be notified by email when new stuff is posted here. This may or may not be of interest to you. I’m curious what it looks like for you guys when you’re logged in, but not so curious that I can be bothered to log in as one of you and look. I just wanted you to know it exists.
Well, I’ve nearly made it to the Abyss and I’m prepared for a lot of screaming once I take the plunge. Fortunately, there’s still a bit of delaying to be had. Some of it isn’t even of my doing! But most of it is.
I’ve connected with Rollerballer and I think we’ve got a plan worked out to get me the items I need from him. There’ll be a short delay on this, but I believe I’ll have them before long. I’ve poked the bear (or guy-in-a-bear-suit?) a coupletimes regarding the two viewing items that I’m not sure still exist in any form. No responses yet, but I’ll keep poking until I find out more or it wakes up and mauls me. Either is acceptable. My money is on “I’m waiting for information about this topic” being the best delaying tactic available to my arsenal. Don’t let me down!
Even the American minimum wage workforce has pitched in to help delay things for me. The last item I was waiting to receive from Amazon (well, technically an Amazon partner business) was a used copy of the non-special edition version of “Free Enterprise.” Yep, not only am I going to watch “Free Enterprise” twice, I’m going to watch both versions just as we did at BIYF. This may seem silly but remember, “Free Enterprise” is a very watchable film unlike so many other things on the viewing list… The package arrived on Friday and I opened it to discover this:
In case it isn’t obvious, that is not “Free Enterprise.” I honestly don’t know what it is. It is so low budget, “indie,” direct-to-VHS, and off-the-radar that no one has even bothered to put a plot description into IMDB for it. There is a description on the back of the very “I made this artwork myself using Microsoft Paint!” packaging, however:
A brief scan of the film (not actually watching it) suggests that invoking things like “Alice in Wonderland,” Howard Hawks, psychedelic, and David Lynch in the description may be overselling things a bit. Quite a bit.
To their credit, the vendor immediately refunded my entire purchase and included this delightful endorsement of the product I had mistakenly received:
“Regarding the item(s) in question, please dispose of it as you see fit – there is no need to return it.”
Overall no-harm-no-foul, but in the end I still need a copy of the basic, no-frills edition of “Free Enterprise.” It has been re-ordered from a different used-video supplier and should arrive in a few days.
The only other news from this week is that I tried out my note-taking sheet by reviewing 1989’s “Millennium” starring Kris Kristofferson and Cheryl Ladd. While I don’t think I’ll actually bother writing up a review for this (there’ll be plenty of that sort of thing headed my way), I am fairly confident I would have enough material from my notes to do so. I’ll probably try it out one more time (“Pathfinder” 2007, starring Karl Urban, Clancy Brown, and Moon Bloodgood perhaps?) before I finally get things started.
If you have any thoughts on any of this, have any materials/know anything about the Tim Anderson Experience video or BIYF Top Ten List, would really like us to watch “Rebellious” at an upcoming BIYF Festival, or think I’m being lazy and should write a review for “Millennium” and/or “Pathfinder,” just let me know in the comments below. I’ll keep knocking out a post a week here until the BIYF Binge actually begins and everything goes to hell.