Tag Archives: My Little Pony

Finding My Voice

As Big MacIntosh welcomes more little ponies into my insanely large doll collection, I have been reading my published novel Snow Babies.  The novel is written in third person viewpoint with a single focus character for each scene.  But because the story is about a whole community surviving a blizzard with multiple story lines criss-crossing and converging only to diverge and dance away from each other again, the focus character varies from scene to scene.

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Big MacIntosh finds himself to be the leader of a new group of My Little Ponies.

In Canto Two, Valerie Clarke, the central main character of the story, is the focus character.  Any and all thoughts suggested by the narrative occur only in Valerie’s pretty little head.  Canto Three is focused through the mind of Trailways bus driver Ed Grosland.  Canto Four focuses on Sheriff’s Deputy Cliff Baily.  And so, on it goes through a multitude of different heads, some heroic, some wise, some idiotic, and some mildly insane.  Because it is a comedy about orphans freezing to death, some of the focus characters are even thinking at the reader through frozen brains.

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The ponies decide to visit Minnie Mouse’s recycled Barbie Dreamhouse where Olaf the Snowman is the acting butler.

That kind of fractured character focus threatens to turn me schizophrenic.  I enjoy thinking like varied characters and changing it up, but the more I write, the more the characters become like me, and the more I become them.  How exactly do you manage a humorous narrative voice when you are constantly becoming someone else and morphing the way you talk to fit different people?  Especially when some of your characters are stupid people with limited vocabularies and limited understanding?

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The ponies are invited to live upstairs with the evil rabbit, Pokemon, and Minions.

I did an entire novel, Superchicken, in third person viewpoint with one focus character, Edward-Andrew Campbell, the Superchicken himself.  That is considerably less schizophrenic than the other book.  But it is still telling a story in my voice with my penchant for big words, metaphors, and exaggerations.

The novel I am working on in rough draft manuscript form right now, The Baby Werewolf, is done entirely in first person point of view.  That is even more of an exercise of losing yourself inside the head of a character who is not you.  One of the first person narrators is a girl, and one is a werewolf.  So, I have really had to stretch my writing ability to make myself into someone else multiple times.

I assure you, I am working hard to find a proper voice with which to share my personal wit and wisdom with the world.  But if the men in white coats come to lock me away in a loony bin somewhere, it won’t be because I am playing a lot with My Little Ponies.

 

 

 

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Filed under commentary, goofiness, humor, insight, NOVEL WRITING, photo paffoonies, self portrait, strange and wonderful ideas about life, writing, writing humor

Completing a Collection

I was foolish enough to share with you all in my post “The Quest for Pinkie Pie” that my insane Hoarder’s Disorder has led me into a world full of Bronies

This is a really terrible first fan art of My Little Pony.  I gave Pinkie Pie insane cereal killer eyes, and Rainbow Dash is too fat to fly.

This is a really terrible first fan art of My Little Pony. I gave Pinkie Pie insane cereal killer eyes, and Rainbow Dash is too fat to fly.

(seriously maladjusted men who watch My Little Pony; Friendship is Magic and love it, making fan art and buying dolls).  I have been on a quest to put together a complete set of MLP’s and an accompanying set of Equestria Girls (ponies put through a magic portal that turns them into teenage mutant horse-girls).

I have been making steady progress since my mother sent me $50 in a gift card for Christmas and I blew it all on ponies.  I would like to report that I have finally brought this terrible mental illness thing to a proper conclusion.  (And, no, I did not explain the problem to a psychiatrist or anything.)  I completed the collection.  Now I no longer have to buy any more of the terrible things.

I was able to find Pinkie Pie and Fluttershy both together on the bargain shelf at Walmart.  Both were less than fifteen dollars.  Together they didn’t bust my monthly maximum.  So I put together the entire set of twelve and the compulsion has begun to dissipate.

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Now the only thing left to do is play with them.

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Filed under doll collecting, humor, Paffooney

Hoarding Disorder

Pinkie PieI am writing this post today to celebrate two things.  My doctor’s visit today not only came back with positive post-op results, but it was free.  And while I waited at Walmart for my prescription to be filled at the pharmacy, I found the two Equestria Girls that finish my collection.  I spent the co-pay that I didn’t have to pay on Pinkie Pie and Fluttershy (I made that rhyme without a try!)  Yay me!

But I have also come to the sobering realization that my collecting mania may actually be a form of mental illness.  After all, my daughter is now 13 and not really interested in My Little Pony any longer.  That excuse no longer flies.  My wife has lost interest in collecting also (although she still collects clothes and shoes with a gusto that shames Imelda Marcos.)

So why do I do this collecting thing so relentlessly?  Is it a serious mental disorder.  As always I turned to the internet to diagnose myself with life-threatening conditions based on one, or possibly  two symptoms.   I may be doomed.  What I found was an explanation of Hoarding Disorder.

Yes, I inherited it from Grandma Beyer.  She hoarded all sorts of stuff in her little house in Mason City, Iowa.  In her basement, when they cleaned out the house, she still had wrapping paper from Christmases in the 1930’s.  It was in stacks. neatly folded and ready to be re-used.  According to the Psychology Today website article about extreme collecting, one of the first signs of the disorder is the inability to part with personal possessions no matter their actual value.  Never in all the years we spent Christmases together did I ever notice Grandma re-using wrapping paper.  She actually kept that stuff for the memories they invoked and the sentimental value they held for her.  My mother ended up throwing out all that wrapping paper when the house was sold.

Another indicator is the extreme cluttering of the home, to the point of rendering living spaces unlivable.  One glance at the upstairs hallway sends shivers down my weak little hoarder’s spine.

Toyman's Hallway

There are any number of things that might concern a psychiatrist in this hallway.  Of course, the blocked door in the back is where the old non-working air-conditioner is stashed, so there is no room in there for stuffing more stuff.  This picture reveals that I have a vast collection of collections… not merely one.  I collect stuffed toys, HO model railroad stuff and trains, Pez dispensers, stamps, coins, comic books (in the boxes in the back corner under the stuffed toys), and books… gobs, and gobs, and gobs of books!  (“Gobs” is Iowegian for “lots”, not “sailors”.)  In fact, the door on the left is actually the door to the library.

A quick scan of Toonerville along the tops of the bookshelves reveals the full extent of my madness.  Here you see HO-sized buildings, most of which I painted myself or built from kits.  You also see the Pez dispensers that suck money out of my pockets at $1.50 a shot. Downtown Toonerville Downtown Toonerville2My trains have been around for many years.  I shared that obsession with my father (Grandma Beyer’s eldest son) when I was a boy and most of these trains were either gifts from him, or purchased with allowance.  (I haven’t bought anything new in seven years.)

Pez Supers Pez Toons

So, the evidence makes it clear.  One day soon I will be locked up somewhere in a padded room.  I hope, at least, that my children still like me well enough to sneak in Pez dispensers when they come to visit.

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Filed under autobiography, doll collecting, humor

The Quest for Pinkie Pie

The day before yesterday I wrote a post for 1000 Voices Speak for Compassion that basically tore my heart out.  It made me relive one of my worst defeats as a teacher who cares about teaching and students.  I have to admit that I spent an awful lot of time crying the past three days.  But I am not a sorrowful Sad-Sack with a sourpuss’ simpering sarcastic smile.  Not I.  I come back from downers by doing silly stuff… kinda like over-dosing on alliteration in that S-filled sentence.  So what silly stuff am I up to after a triple-down darkness-dealing downer like the one from that post? (When Compassion Fails)  I took up the Quest for Pinkie Pie.

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I borrowed the My Little Pony image above from Jessica Ann Hughes whose very eloquent post laments the series update as a sexualization of the thirty-year-old toy franchise in the newer series, My Little Pony, Friendship is Magic.

But I have to argue that it doesn’t sexualize anything beyond the surface.   After all, these ponies are really little girls that have charming little-girl personalities and act in stories that have little-to-nothing to do with sex.  Yes, I have seen the wedding episode where Twilight Sparkle’s big brother gets married, but that episode is about trusting your own instincts when something seems wrong.  If somebody like me is getting sexual vibes from that cartoon, then something is seriously wrong and that somebody should seek therapy to avoid becoming some kind of pedophile.  I mean, it is important to self-censor.  When I was getting a soda at QT this afternoon, I was happy to see two pretty girls in short pants for the first time in a long time.  6a00d8341c562c53ef01676098b1fd970bTexas weather has been rainy and dreary for the past few weeks and the sun has finally come out.  But… wait a minute!  Why am I looking at middle school girls’ legs?  I am a miserable, broken-down, spotty old man.  And I have been busily watching this My Little Pony show on YouTube where all these little girl ponies are walking around naked all the time!   But, am I not over-reacting?  Yes, the ponies have big eyes and shortened muzzles… but I haven’t been obsessing about ponies because of hormone imbalances or something.  I thought the whole Brony thing was ridiculous up until a very short time ago.  Pinkie-Pie-my-little-pony-friendship-is-magic-20424750-570-402I mean, grown men watching a cartoon about little-girl ponies and singing the songs and buying the toys and wearing ponies on T-shirts.  Is there therapy for that?  I am hoping so… because I think I’m going to need it.

My doll-collecting mental illness began, as I tried to explain and tell lies about yesterday, when I was a child who had been given dolls for birthdays and Christmas (I meant to say Action Figures… No!  Really!) and only really had sisters to play with at home (my little brother was eight years younger than me, and my friends from school lived in the country, miles away from town on farms.)

As a young man, I regained my dolls… I mean Action Figures, and tried to restore them (not play with them… I never said play with them).  When I got married, my wife and I actively began collecting them.  She was initially charmed by my love for my old pieces of plastic.  We began looking for what was out there.  Captain Action and G.I. Joes for me, Barbies for her.  When she lost interest (or found a cure for that particular mental aberration), I kept on.  The rules for collecting included; Twelve inch tall figures.  Never pay more than $20 for a toy.  Never spend more than $50 a month.  Find rare dolls for little money.  Rescue dolls who somebody once loved and played with, or that are on the verge of the ignominious end to be found in the department-store dumpster.

Rainbow Dash started me down the slippery slope to Brony-ism.  I just happened to find, on an after-Christmas clearance table at Walmart with all the other damaged toys that didn’t realistically survive the seasonal play-with-it-in-the-store-while- mommy-shops damage, a cheap and forlorn Rainbow Dash with extra hair.  She looked at me with those big, sad eyes and pleaded with me to buy her and save her from the dumpster (or the sadistic little girl that would buy and dismember her because she was just a cheap thing from Walmart).  I’m too stupid to resist.20150105_161300

Then I began examining my purchase because I didn’t really know what it was… the Brony-thing warning lights were going off somewhere in the back of my goofy-old-man head, but it took some research before I learned what Equestria Girls were and that there were six of them.  Six of them!  A set of six to collect!  But also the original ponies!  A set of twelve!

And the disease had me.

Ponie girls

So, here you see the tangible evidence that I am acutely infected.  Brony-itis?  Possibly.  Fatal?  Hopefully not.  If you’re counting, they still are not all here.  Apple Jack, Rarity, Twilight Sparkle and Rainbow Dash as Equestria Girls.  Apple Jack, Rarity, Twilight Sparkle, Rainbow Dash, and Pinkie Pie as ponies.  But no Fluttershy at all.  And… what’s this?  No Pinkie Pie?  The most popular pony with little girls, I could not find her in Equestria Girl form?  Well, I could… but not for under $20.  I went shopping at Toys R Us yesterday with the Princess in tow.  We bought toys, but no Pinkie Pie for less than twenty one.  And this collection represents $14 in January, $30 in February, and $25 already this month.  I’m guessing the rules might save me from this disease yet.  Does that mean no Pinkie Pie ever?  Well, I watch the stupid cartoons incessantly now on YouTube… I’ve learned that Friendship is Magic and as long as you can remain true to your friends, you can overcome almost all of life’s problems… together… with love.  And Pinkie Pie is totally random… and funny… and everyone’s friend.  There are good lessons being taught to little girls and old men who watch these things.  Pinkie Pie’s is probably the most important one of all…  So Pinkie is my favorite.  I haven’t found her yet in a way that stays within the rules, but I am not some creepy old man who breaks the rules.  I have the rest of my life to complete this quest.

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Filed under doll collecting, goofiness, humor