Archive for anniversary

Star Warsiversary

Posted in Questions with tags , , , , on 12 February 2017 by Megan

Let’s talk about what I was doing around this time twenty years ago exactly. It was a Wednesday. We’d moved from Columbus to Champaign County only about six months before, the house wasn’t even painted inside, and I was only just embarking on a decade of epic sulking about being removed from the house I was born in. I was eleven, loud and always in a hurry, emotional and easily frustrated, passionate about reading and spending every possible hour out in the woods.

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We were never a very TV-oriented family. Didn’t even have a set until I was three and that was just because Grandma got a new one. However, shortly after settling in Champaign County, we got a television four times bigger than the old one, and we started getting a pizza once a week and watching a movie over dinner. Being a homeschooling family with a full-time mom and a dad working from home, we defied traditional “weekends,” and Wednesday was pizza/movie night by virtue of being the day we went to the store. Unbeknownst to me, Mom had picked up a movie that afternoon that would change my life.

We gathered round the TV, I was sitting in my usual spot on the Mission oak couch with my legs drawn up so I could balance my plate on my knees — pepperoni pizza — and I could look out the sliding glass door to the screened in porch and the yard beyond. February 12 was a cold snowy day and there were the remains of several miniature snowmen I’d made and painted that afternoon.

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“Today I played in the snow. Made 5 snowmen (small ones) and made snow paint. Mom bought STAR WARS. We still have to get the other two in the trilogy. Played computer.”

I remember a lot of things very clearly about that first-ever viewing. Hearing the first lines and almost forgetting about my pizza. Being amazed that the first characters were so unapologetically robots. I thought the Stormtroopers were robots themselves. Actually I thought Vader was one, too. It was like a nothing but robots celebration! Like so many others seeing Star Wars for the first time, I was awed because it was like nothing I’d ever seen before. At 11, I’d seen very few movies at all, mostly animated or time-honored musicals like The King and I and Sound of Music. Definitely nothing like this 1970s scifi flick. I misheard half of what was going on (“Jedi knife” and “cologne wars,” for example) and thought Han and Chewie were the most interesting things in the whole film. I was impressed that the heroine looked exactly like me if I didn’t have bangs, though — I was going through a fit of being sick of every girl being a freakin’ blonde.

There’s a curious contradiction in the first time I saw Star Wars. On one hand, I was clearly struck by it enough that I recorded it in all caps and underlined in my diary. On the other hand, it was as much a footnote as the forgettable snow paint. I don’t remember being any more enthused about it than any other movie during pizza night (which included The Great Panda Adventure, a film about which I remember nothing except the kid said “American Gladiators” a lot . . . and there were pandas), but I must have expressed some extreme interest in it because in the two weeks between A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back, I watched every interview on TV that even remotely referenced Star Wars. I believe I’m the only person on the planet who saw the carbon-freezing scene for the first time on Oprah (or Rosie? I could never tell those two shows apart) during an interview with Billy Dee Williams before I even knew the name of the second film.

Yes, Return of the Jedi is the film that made my obsession bloom, but A New Hope gave me something. Over the years, it’s traded orbits with Attack of the Clones for being my least favorite of the six, but it is an amazing movie and it planted the seed of a love and passion that has been part of me for twenty years. Twenty years, beginning with stories scribbled in atrocious handwriting, making my own paper dolls because I wasn’t allowed to buy action figures, reading the books at the speed of light so I could get more; twenty years of anticipating new releases, of rewatching a film more than anyone could think possible, of buying books and toys and games. Twenty years of loving a film franchise as I’ve loved nothing else and as no one else has ever loved it.

Happy anniversary, Star Wars. Here’s to the next twenty years!

Doing Death Stars

Posted in Fun with tags , , , , , , on 31 May 2013 by Megan

Last Friday was the 30th anniversary of my favorite, Return of the Jedi. I like to do parties and stuff to commemorate big Star Wars anniversaries, but I couldn’t get anybody to do a party with me. So instead I made some cake pops and iced coffee and watched ROTJ over the phone with a friend of mine.

My lovely workstation!

Small scale Death Star workstation

Because I was basically keeping it simple, I just took the chocolate cake recipe out of the booklet that came with the pop maker. It’s actually really weird to make real batter after mug cakes, because “3/4 cups flour” seems like so much! This batter is the runniest out of all of them, but I finally figured out the best way to pour it out using a glass measuring cup, so this was the most convenient run of this.

Cake pop maker and timer!

Use the timer to count out 5 minutes bake time

They bake for 5 minutes. I could probably get almost a full dozen more pops if it weren’t for how much batter I keep spilling over — but I don’t get that much practice.

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Early batch with extremely uneven sizes

Gordon Ramsay would seriously not approve of their unevenness. Then, after extracting them from the cooker, I dropped them in a bowl of confectioner sugar.

Apply libewally.

Apply libewally!

The idea here was that these would be “unfinished Death Stars,” see? Since they’re round and dark and stuff. It may be a stretch, but this was an epically low-budget, low-effort celebration.

Mini Death Stars a-coolin'

Mini Death Stars a-coolin’

You may ask what those few pariah cake balls are there to the side. Well, okay, since you asked — I thought of this experiment while I was working on this. What if I stuck some caramel filled Rollos into the cake while it was baking?

Caramel-filled chocolate reactor cores?

Caramel-filled chocolate reactor cores?

And I thought, you know, they might be like the Death Star core or something, all melty and caramel. Anyway, I got them in successfully and they baked very well. Unfortunately the problem was that the cake pops wouldn’t come out of the holes and kept separating, so they didn’t look aesthetically pleasing at all.

Not even a little. But flavor taste = sensational!

Not even a little. But flavor taste = sensational!

Despite all that, though, the taste was absolutely amazing. So not a complete flop; definitely something to pursue.

Anyway, after all of that, I loaded up my Imperial mug with mini Death Stars, fixed up some iced coffee, and settled in to watch the best movie ever. Ah. Happy 30th birthday, ROTJ.

A modest but satisfying collection.

A modest but satisfying collection.

Doing Death Stars via Mug Madness.

Spotlight: 100 Posts

Posted in Spotlight with tags , , , , on 19 May 2013 by Megan

I find this wonderfully appropriate: 100 posts on this, one of the more significant dates on the Star Wars calender.

A note on the Star Wars calender: its holiest month is May, the month which gave us the theatrical release of the six films and the birth of Lucas himself. Specific holidays in this month are May 14 (Lucas’ Birthday — party games include ‘Pin the Ego on the Director’ and ‘What’s Bigger Than George’s Ego?’), May 16 (Episode II release date), May 19 (Episodes I & III release dates), May 21 (Episode V release date), and May 25 (Episodes IV & VI released). Had I thought a little more closely about it at the time, I would have officially kicked this blog off in May. (I did launch the Facebook page on May 3.)

Anyway, one hundred is always considered a big landmark, so I wanted to observe it. Plus, it being May 19, this kicks off what I call “Star Wars Week” (May 19-25), and it’s also the 8th birthday of Episode III and the 14th birthday of Episode I. That’s another great landmark . . . I was (almost) 14 when I saw Episode I, which means this movie has existed for half my life. Ouch.

Because it’s the beginning of Star Wars week, which I’m ending with a little observance for Return of the Jedi‘s 30th birthday, here are the original trailers to all six films!






And now because this is chiefly to commemorate my 100th post, I give you my top favorite moments as Star Wars Librarian. Remember that your questions help produce content, so ask away!

  1. Footwear and recycled content are both hilarious
  2. This post about book covers
  3. Discovering the song “Primeday”
  4. This scathing book review
  5. And this scathing book review
  6. These incredible Star Wars paintings
  7. Goldentusk’s Star Wars song
  8. All my sweet geek swag
  9. These insane books
  10. The Episode II party
  11. Call Me Maybe with Star Wars
  12. Getting my lightsaber
  13. The saddest moment
  14. Criticizing the prequels
  15. This hilarious comments war about SWL canon

    Bonus: that #replaceawordwithpants game on Twitter. That was fun!

    Bonus: that #replaceawordwithpants game on Twitter. That was fun!

Episode II: The Tennthenniel

Posted in Fun with tags , , , , , , , on 25 May 2012 by Megan

Maybe I can shake off my depression enough to give you a post for May. This is the occupational hazard of having just about the best week of all freaking time, and then having it be over. As you should well know, May 16 was the tenth anniversary of the second Star Wars prequel, that much-abused Episode II: Attack of the Clones. After the giant Episode I party, I knew my friends and I had to do something of equal or greater grandeur to celebrate the next decadeversary of the franchise.

Michelle, Kristine, and I once again got together around a phenomenal cake to watch Star Wars, play games, and in all ways celebrate the starriest of all the wars. Follows are some pictures from our fun time.

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The next important thing after the cake is of course decorations to set the scene, and entertainments, so you’re actually doing something besides getting together for processed sweets.

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At last we were ready for celebration. The guests were assembled — all, uh, three of us — and everything was baked, decorated, prepared, and set. The order of the day included playing every Star Wars game we had, participating in some Mad Libs and coloring books, and finally watching Episode II over dinner — a fresh hot gristlewart sausage pizza (sorry, old Star Wars Haiku chatroom in joke there). We ended it over fresh slices of Dex’s Diner. (If it wasn’t abundantly clear what our cake was: it was Dex’s Diner from Episode II.)