Greetings from my dark, secret, mystical, pizza-scented basement domain.
You may have noticed some pretty drastic changes to the website. The cartoon fish is gone, the site is no longer called Classysturgeon, the theme of the site and look of the site and smell of the site are all different. But despair not!
I’ll still be writing goofy posts and talking about my crazy adventure books. Check out the “blog” page for the Classysturgeon-style articles and posts.
I’ve just decided to change the site to emphasize my work as an author, hence the new site name, josephcaldaraauthor.com, and the snazzy, professional-looking headshot. Because of this, you’ll find links to the Bob and the Cyber-Llama series of adventure/comedy books on most of the site’s pages. Think of them like the engravings on the Arc de Triomphe. Only with more llamas.
Check out the “events” page for descriptions of upcoming readings and other events.
I’ve also changed the name of my Facebook account, Twitter account, and Instagram account, as well. Don’t worry, though, it’s still me.
So please join me as, like a digital Magellan, we continue to navigate our way through the seas of the Internet and search for the East Indies of an online community.
I’ll be holding an author reading event at Sable Elementary on Thursday, February 22!
From 12:00pm to 1:00pm, I’ll be visiting the fine folks at Sable Elementary in Aurora, Colorado, for an author visitation and reading event. During the event, I’ll be reading a short passage from Bob and the Cyber-Llama, as well as speaking about my writing experience and self-publishing. I’ll also be hosting a Q and A. All three books in the series will be available at the event.
This is a closed event, so only the Sable students will be privy to its glorious, meaty goings-on. However, if you’d like to schedule an event like this, let me know by emailing me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
It’s thanks to your support that I’m able to hold events like this. Stay tuned for future updates. Excelsior!
In their third escapade, Bob Halibut and his cyber-llama butler, Jeeves, hit the adventuring trail once again, this time in search of the mythical sword Excalibur. As they comb through the remnants of King Arthur’s legacy, they find a world of armored knights, killer cockatrices, an evil sorceress, sweet snacks, salty snacks, sweet-and-salty snacks, and break-dancing.
If you’re ready to go medieval with Bob and his cyborg quadruped, pick up Bob and the Black Knight today!
When I was but a young lad, I dreamed of owning a lightsaber.
And then the wheel of time turned ever-onward. I grew older and taller and hairier and started noticing young ladies. And I dreamed of owning a lightsaber.
Then I became a man. I put childish ways behind me, put on a suit and tie, and hit the job trail. I built my resume, interviewed at accomplished institutions, and worked diligently to support myself. And I dreamed of owning a lightsaber.
Sure, there were those cheap, plastic ones with the segmented blades that we played with as kids. They broke a lot and stopped working after a few years. But we all knew those weren’t “real” lightsabers and longed for the day we could hold the real thing on our hands and feel like true Jedi.
Well, no longer.
Thanks to the folks at Ultrasabers, my roommates and I now possess a genuine, fully-functional, Yoda-worthy lightsabers!
I wouldn’t know, but I imagine this is what the day your child is born feels like. And no, Ultrasabers isn’t sponsoring me to write this post. The sabers are just that awesome.
They’re made of a super-strong, lightweight material that can endure all kinds of punishment. It allows you to engage in full-contact duels and pull off some pretty swanky spinny-moves without damaging your saber or your arms.
Lightsaber dueling is fantastic exercise. If you’re like me and you hate most forms of exercise more than Han Solo hates carbonite, you’ve no doubt morphed into a plump, doughy form over the years. Lightsaber battles are just the thing to bring our your inner ten-year-old and get you moving.
One of the best things about Ultrasabers is the price. People have been able to buy combat-worthy lightsabers for some time, but they’ve had to spend a few hundred bucks. With Ultrasabers, the lightsabers start at around $55, and you can spend as much as you want on them. Sound and a fancy hilt will run up the price tag a bit. Still, you can get a pretty awesome saber with basic sound for around $165.
The sabers also come in just about every color you can imagine: red, green, guardian blue, arctic blue, purple, orange, turquoise, and Aegean silver (or “white” to those of us not enrolled in art school.) The website also sells color discs, which can be used with the white saber to produce a wider variety of colors. I’ve used the discs with my Aegean silver blade to make yellow, emerald green, lime green, puce, light turquoise, silver, gold, “New Hope” blue, and even pink.
However, if really want to engage in some series duels with these things, there are a few facts you’ll want to keep in mind:
- The fancier, more expensive hilts, like my “scorpion” handle, contain more metal, which makes the saber heavier. It certainly doesn’t make the saber hard to use, but it will cause your arms to get tired after awhile.
- Ultrasabers eat batteries like a sarlacc eats Boba Fetts. When buying your saber, you’ll have a lot of options to adjust before the purchase is complete. You can either get a blade that uses triple-A batteries or some new-age, lithium ion garbage that’s impossible to find. Go with the triple-As. Also, keep in mind that sabers with multiple blades (double-bladed sabers or longsword-style, Kylo Ren-looking sabers) drain the batteries much more quickly.
- If you buy a lightsaber with sound (I mean, why wouldn’t you?), you’ll have several different sound options, which increase the cost of the saber exponentially. The basic sound option works great; you don’t need to spend extra money on a fancy-shmancy speaker system.
- You can perform basic maintenance on your saber using a tiny alan wrench, which you can buy from Ultrasabers for $1 at checkout. As soon as it arrives, go to a hardware store and buy a few more wrenches of the same size. They’ll inevitably get lost.
- The biggest injury risk from lightsaber battles is whacked fingers. A bloody knuckle or black-and-blue thumb will bring your night of fun to an end pretty fast. Unfortunately, there aren’t really any protective gloves designed for lightsaber fighting, so you’ll have to improvise.
- We’ve found that the best solution is UFC fighting gloves, which have padding above the knuckles and on the upper part of the fingers. The smooth fabric on the palm can make the saber difficult to grip, but cutting the palm out entirely or adding Velcro (just the soft part) solves that problem pretty effectively.
- The gloves still leave your thumb and the lower part of your fingers exposed, but we’re working on a solution.
Apart from ferret proctology, I’ve never felt something as exhilarating than battling with legitimate lightsabers. If you want to earn a few cool points, get some aerobic exercise, and feel like a Jedi, head over to Ultrasabers and make a purchase. Regret it you will not.
Note: That last sentence made me realize that Microsoft Word’s grammar check doesn’t see anything wrong with Yoda-speak. Depending on how you look at it, that’s either awful or awesome.
Who wants to read another post about fast food?
For those of you new to this site, I’ve spoken about most of the elements of fast-foodery, from the hostage negotiation-type scenario that is asking for ketchup to the predatory war of the Yum! Brands franchises. I’ve gone on and on about McDonalds and Taco Bell and Wendy’s and any other fast food franchises you can think of. But I have yet to talk about Subway.
Because Subway scares me.
Subway twists and molds the human mind in a way yet to be understood by the world’s most advanced hypnotists and psychologists. I suspect the whole thing to be an underground experiment in human psychology instigated by a race of underground pink ferret people as preparation for the coming invasion. But that’s just me.
Each Subway establishment houses two employees, who are separated by an invisible wall, what I call the “Iron Condiment.” The employee on the right handles bread, meat, and cheese, while the fellow on the left is in charge of herding the unruly condiments onto the bread. And a strange, psychic phenomenon occurs every time a Subway employee passes through the Iron Condiment.
While an employee is in the bread sector, their short term memory is reduced to a fraction of a second. My typical interaction with a meat quadrant worker is as follows:
Me: Hi, can I please have a chicken bacon ranch sandwich with provolone cheese on Italian herbs and cheese bread?
Employee: What kind of bread?
Me: Italian herbs and cheese. And I’d like a chicken bacon ranch, please.
Employee [after slicing the bread]: What kind of sandwich, again?
Me: Chicken bacon ranch. With provolone cheese.
Employee [after putting the meat on my sandwich]: What kind of cheese?
Me: The kind I just mentioned half a second ago!
But this isn’t simply a case of a bored employee not paying attention. The instant you pass through the Iron Condiment, you’re in an entirely different world: the free world. When you begin speaking to an employee on this side of the invisible partition, something shifts in their brains and they transform from a grunting neanderthal into Rain Man. No matter how many condiments you list, all of them will be placed on your sandwich, in order, without fail. It goes something like this:
Me: Hey, can I have lettuce, tomatoes, olives, green peppers, banana peppers, onions, carrots, avocados, Sasquatch hair, jalapenos, pickles, spinach, a tiny break-dancing Yugoslavian man, and cucumbers?
Employee [proceeding to put each condiment on my sandwich in perfect order]: Sure.
It’s like the employees go through about twenty years of secondary education and brain exercises by moving six inches. The entire thing just creeps me out. I’ll stick to the Quarter Pounders. At least they’re just trying to mess with my arteries.