The original 1980’s Harry Potter movie

Back in the 1980’s I was channel surfing and came across a movie on cable that was just starting called Troll. It was pretty bizarre and was about this Troll who was systematically taking over each unit of an apartment building in an attempt to rule the world. Something reminded me of it recently so I put it in my Netflix queue and the kids and I watched it. And it turned out the main character’s name was a boy named Harry Potter.

Not only was his name Harry Potter, but his name was stated quite clearly many times throughout the movie as he battled trolls and talking plants and befriended a witch that lived upstairs from him. So I decided to throw a little more confusion into the world by editing together all of those parts into a small collection of clips and put them on YouTube, claiming that it’s common knowledge that J.K Rowling based her Harry Potter books off of the original Harry Potter movie from the 1980’s. Here’s the result:

I blew 2 or 3 hours on this last night, just to hopefully confuse a few people before YouTube yanks it down for copyright violations. I’m truly a dedicated jerk! If you’re too lazy to read the description I put on YouTube for it, here it is:

I caught this on TV a few weeks ago and decided to Tivo it. I never realized that J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter books were based on an early 1980’s movie by the same name.

The story is quite different, taking place in an apartment building called Hogwarts. Harry is trained in magic by a neighbor lady named Eunice McGonagall. Harry’s parents are actually alive in this one and Harry’s father is named Harry too. His father went to a university called Gryffindor and you can see Gryffindor’s logo stamped on this ratty old hat he wears throughout the movie. (Notice he wears Gryffindor colors throughout the whole movie too.) Harry also has a sister who gets kidnapped by Voldemort. Voldemort is this giant muppet who he battles in the end.

Pretty interesting to watch and see what the original vision of the Harry Potter universe looked like! Look for it on cable TV, because it appears that it’s never been on DVD and the VHS is out of print.

Watch spam??

A few months ago I re-enabled the “catchall” on the phonelosers.org email, meaning that I get all email addressed to anything at phonelosers.org. So email bradcarterisabigretard@phonelosers.org and I get it. I forget why I did that, but since then I’ve started getting over 3,000 spam emails a day. Luckily Gmail rules at filtering spam and very few of them end up in my in box. (The spam folder currently has 27,532 messages in it.) But this one came earlier this week, into my in box, and made me laugh:

Looks like someone forgot to fill in all the important fields in their spamming script before sending it to billions of people. I submitted it to The Fail Blog, which is why it’s got the big FAIL on there. But the weird thing is the insane amount of WATCH spam that I get. I bet 1/4th of my spam is for watches. Like, those metal and leather things people wore on their wrists back in the dark ages before cell phones. Check out these weird subject lines and emails though:

Our watches are popular all over the world. Precious watches that look elegant and expensive are actually very cheap. No , this is not a dream, this is replica watches. Order yours today and it will reach your place in no time.

Your watch will be delivered to any destination. What can be better than fast and secure shipment of elegant designer watches? Maybe just an extremely low price of these watches. For a few hundred dollars you can buy as many watches as you want.

Check out Bling Bling watches Only limited to 1000 pieces worldwide, they are expected to sell out within a month.

Our stylish watches are priceless but not pricy. Being elegant and trendy takes too much time and money but we know how to help you. First, you save your time by ordering online, second, you save your money by buying replica watches that are identical to the brand ones.

Very lovely watches at very lovely prices. The top quality and low price of our watches attracts customers from all over the world. So no matter where you live you can be a happy owner of such a timepiece as we ship them worldwide.

Watch the prices drop for that cool watch.

Today is a great time to think about getting a watch.

No, spammer, 1997 was a time to think about getting a watch! I think the last time I wore a watch was 1999. I had one of those phone book watches that could sync to my computer by just looking at the flashing computer screen. It was cool. IN 1999!

Sorry, watch wearers. I’m not actually that anti-watch. I do think watches are cool and look nice but I’m just not that stylish and I can’t imagine blowing money on a thing that does what my cell phone already does since that goes everywhere with me. The spam is just weird though. I’m used to business opportunity spam and “your rich Nigerian uncle died” spam and magic hair growing potion spam and this spam I have here that says, Your manhood will come back to you like a boomerang. But watch spam? That’s just strange. Do any of you get watch spam?

It IS a Nova!

Yesterday I was driving Payton home from school when this car pulls up next to me and the fat lady in the passenger seat is loudly arguing with the 3 heavily tattooed men in the car with her that my Ford Focus is a Nova and they’re wrong about it not being one. So she decides to get confirmation from me and I say, “Yes, this is definitely a Nova!” and she seems satisfied that she won the argument as one of the tattooed men eyes me from the back seat like he wants to kill me. I wonder how many more confrontations like this I can expect with my new Nova emblem.

Terminator 4: The Quest For More Money

Saturday we saw a couple movies. Terminator Salvation first, which I was kind of disappointed in. Pretty boring storytelling, even if there was lots of neat action. Then we snuck into Night at the Museum 2. I liked it, but not quite as much as the first one. When NatM didn’t start for 10 minutes after it was scheduled, I finally called up the movie theater (I worked there 13 years ago and for some reason I still remember their phone number) and said, “Your projectionist has fallen asleep. Could you have someone start up Night at the Museum?” and he says sure. Then I said, “Oh, also…there’s a guy in that theater who is talking on his cell phone when he’s not supposed to. Could you ask him to stop?” The guy responded with something like “In which theater is he?” and I said, “In this one! I’m talking about me! I’m kidding with you!” and hung up on him. Payton found it amusing.

Today we went on a hike and ended up finding about 5 Geocaches along the way. Kate was there and so was Dude and his family. One of the Geocaches was hanging from a very high tree branch and impossible to reach with just your hands. To even get that far you had to walk across a fallen log to reach the tree that it’s in. Dude is coming back with some kind of 8′ pole/hook combination. I’m not that dedicated though.

Kids and I went swimming this afternoon. Emily told me she’d tried to call me from the pool phone while I was away, but the phone wouldn’t dial. I tried to prove her wrong, but realized she was right because the keypad didn’t respond to anything. So I was able to pass on a bit of wisdom (aka show off) by showing them how switchhook pulse dialing worked (You tap the switch hook quickly for each number you dial.) and I was able to dial another extension. Some boy who was hanging out with them thought it was the coolest thing he’d ever seen and immediately started dialing random numbers that way. As we left and shut the door, we could hear him pounding on the switch hook from the other side of the wall.

Cat Trek Gym Machines

I made a new post for signhacker.com today which features wonderful pictures such as this one:

Been cat sitting a lot this weekend, which is fun just for the change of scenery on either side of my laptop screen. Saw Star Trek last night with Angela. And wow. It was awesome. The only other Star Trek movie I’ve seen is Generations in 1994 and only because I worked at the movie theater. And I really liked that one, but this one was great. It makes me want to put every Star Trek movie ever made on my Netflix queue. So I did.

For some reason I just never got into Star Trek. As a kid, I would come across the 60’s version occasionally on TV and I would try to watch it but I thought it looked stupid. I caught just a few episodes of Generations while it was on TV and thought it looked neat, but not neat enough to watch it every week. I’ve probably seen less than 10 full episodes of that. Just about every friend I had in the early 90’s was a Trekkie and most of them would insist that Star Trek is the kind of thing I would like and that I’m crazy not to watch it. Guess I was just too busy being homeless or obsessing over BBSes back then.

In 1997 I got into Voyager for a short time, mostly because Colleen worked in the evenings and I was at home with Emily on Sunday nights and nothing better was on. I got to see the whole 7 of 9 drama unfold, from the very beginning, during my month or two of watching that. I think BNF must have happened soon after that, which completely killed my interest in everything that wasn’t BNF, including Voyager.

Tomorrow night is The Phone Show. Listen to it!

I’m listening to Per Gessle’s Son Of A Plumber this evening. It’s good stuff and much different than his current Silly Really hit, which I’ve been loving for a couple of weeks now. I need to get his new album. murd0c tells me that he used to be one of the guys who sang in Roxette, which is an 80’s band I used to like. But murd0c is a filthy liar, so it’s probably not true.

My stairs are finally completed!

A few years back, in 2001, I bought a house and started obsessively renovating everything at once. One of the projects was chopping a giant hole in the living room ceiling and putting in an open staircase, which I never quite finished (pictures of that project are here).

Yesterday, though, I decided to do a search for the names of the people currently renting that house and I found one of their Myspaces. And in her photo album is my completed stairs! Here’s the picture:

Kind of cool to see it all done. Too bad the other families Myspaces are private or I might be able to see more pictures of the finished house. I’ll have to keep secretly stalking this lady, hoping for glimpses of my old unfinished projects.

This makes me want to find Myspaces of people who live in other old houses of mine to see what they’ve done with their places! I’m so creepy.

EvilCal called me up and IMed me yesterday. I hadn’t talked to him on the phone in at least a year. He was telling me about his current renovation projects and I think that’s what made me decide to stalk this lady to find pictures of my house.

Ow, my eye!

On Wednesday I had lunch with some friends, then soon after I got back home my eye is suddenly really itchy and it’s driving me crazy. I search the house for eyedrops and can’t find any. So I take some Benadryl which seems to help a little. Later I go to a mirror to check out my eye and it’s completely red and puffy and in pain. Looks kind of swollen. Pinkeye? I dunno, I’ve never had it. I check the internet and all the symptoms seem to match. Finally I find some eye drops and I think that helped a little.

Yesterday it’s better but still kind of itchy. I took more Benadryl first thing in the morning, not realizing that Benadryl makes you really tired. I’m rarely sick so I just don’t know these things. Spessa clued me in about this later in the day after I complained about how tired I was. So I spent the day eating tons of junk food to stay awake. I got a gigantic Slurpee from 7-Eleven which helped a lot, but kept giving me major brain freeze issues. Ate a whole bag of Fritos, half a can of Pringles, pudding cups, toast, and KFC for dinner. Around noon I took a 20 minute nap, but then forced myself up to continue working. Kids and I went to Payton’s open house and then to the gym/pool. I was really happy to finally go to sleep last night.

Today my eye is looking much better, but still a little red and slightly itchy. No Benadryl today, since I need to be awake. Sleeping in tomorrow will be nice. This weekend I’m catsitting for a friend, which means instead of sitting around my house on the internet all day I’ll be sitting around her house on the internet all day. While my own cat sits at home, bored, alone and ignored. I might be going to see Star Trek this weekend too.

This week Spessa and I had fun messing with a FreeCycle group, which is in a protected area of the PLA Forums or I’d link to it. One little spoofed message by me to the group caused a huge uproar from the members. It was great. Said goodbye to Molly – she’s moving to D.C. for a job.

I joined the collective this week – I upgraded to an iPhone. I’d been a Blackberry user for nearly 2 years up until now, which I really loved but it still lacked in a lot of areas. Like effortlessly syncing podcasts, which I really missed after giving up my ipod. Plus the Blackberry has been crashing a lot lately. I’m really loving the iPhone so far though. I thought I would hate not having a real keyboard, but I’m already typing pretty fast and mostly error-free on its virtual keyboard.

The Geocaching app is not only a billion times cooler on the iPhone, but it’s not $5.99/month like the BB one was. So I’m saving money on that now. And the Slacker streaming radio program actually works on the iPhone and it sounds great. On the Blackberry is was either cutting out constantly or was at a horribly low bitrate that sounded awful. It’s almost enough to make me want to cancel my Sirius radio subscription and just listen to Slacker in the car. Skype and YouTube also works really well on the iPhone so far. It’s a $200 phone, but I’ll be making around $150 by selling my Blackberry on Ebay.

Shane!!?!

Back in 1993 I worked at a movie theater in Indianapolis and met a guy named Shane there who I became friends with. Then I left Indianapolis forever, in fear of the IRS comin’ to get me. But then I swung by Indianapolis again several months later to pick up Shane and fly him all over the country on stolen credit card numbers for Spring Break.

In just under a week, we visited San Diego, Galveston and Cincinnati. Cincinnati was the town we nearly got arrested in after a cop, suspecting us of vandalizing a pay phone, searched my bag and found a bank’s courtesy phone that I’d stolen earlier in the day. Later that night we were both sleeping in a friend’s basement and heard the cops upstairs, apparently taking our friend away. Luckily they didn’t come down for us too. Early the next morning we quietly slipped out a basement window and got the hell out of his neighborhood, hoping not to be spotted by cops on the way to a bus stop. It was fun and more details are at www.notla.com/travels/. While we were eating somewhere in San Diego, Shane drew this comic of Jim Bayless, a man who is kind of a staple of PLA. It was a great vacation and it’s a miracle that we made it back to Indianapolis with no legal mishaps, considering I was scamming these airline tickets on the fly as we reached each new city.

Colleen and I visited Shane once again in 1994 when we took a vacation (free, of course) to Indianapolis to see him. After that, I never saw him again. UNTIL…15 years later (last night) I noticed his name on a ShmooCon site. A little more digging around found that this Shane was also in Indiana. And then even more Googling found a video of Shane and it was actually him! From reading various websites that him and his friends were on, I found that Shane and I have probably been passing each other at various hacker cons for years now. He’s been a ShmooCon, PhreakNic, Defcon and Notacon.

So I emailed him last night and we did some catching up today. He was equally surprised to hear from me. Both of us assumed that we’d never hear from each other again and it’s kind of a bizarre way to come across each other, especially since back in 1994 neither of us knew that the other was even into computers. Turned out he was manning a table in the very room we kept using to sneak into ShmooCon and his voice can even be heard in the video I made of us sneaking in. A friend of Shane’s showed me an email today from 2005 where he’d written me to ask permission to use PLA material on a broadcast they were doing at a con.

Just bizarre that we’ve been at all these same places together and never knew it. Kind of reminds me of how I was friends with my biological brother in high school, both pining for the same girl for a couple of years, then finding out we were brothers 10 years later. Shane’s going to be at Defcon this year so I’ve got to hunt him down.

Oh yeah, speaking of hunting down old friends, Kristine and I managed to find Brad Thompson last week, a guy we both worked with back in the 80’s. He’s part of the reason (indirectly) I ended up moving to Galveston when I left my parents house in 1991. When I got there he got me a job as a painter with him. Was kind of fun catching up with him too. The internet rules for tracking down random old friends. I need to do this more often.

Roswell

For a little over a week now I’ve been completely addicted to Roswell. It’s an old TV show from 1999 about aliens. Basically a teen soap opera with lots of aliens and making out. I remember seeing commercials for it on TV, back when it came out but never got around to watching it even though when I was married our TV was on nonstop.

Last week I was browsing through the television selections on hulu.com for something random to watch while I did some other things and I picked Roswell. And I’ve done nothing productive since then. It’s a ridiculous show, with nonstop love scenes that make me wanna puke and the gayest music ever, but it’s still great. In just a week I’ve watched 2 1/2 seasons of their 45 minute episodes. Only the first season was on Hulu so I downloaded the rest on bittorrent. Only 8 episodes to go and I’m free! Free to resume my life and quit staring at my laptop all day.

In non-Roswell news, Emily had a birthday. I got her a D&D starter kit, even though I know nothing about D&D. The kids and I and two of their friends went to see 17 Again at the theater, which I expected to not enjoy at all but it was actually not so bad. Today we had dinner at Denny’s and then stopped by Goodwill for some speakers. This evening I ran speaker wires to the new speakers for my stereo. Doesn’t that sound like an 80’s thing to do? Who has a stereo anymore? I use an old stereo that I got from Goodwill for the sound on my computer. While stripping various wires tonight, I remembered how much I got yelled at as a kid for using my mom’s scissors as wire strippers and butter knives from the kitchen as screwdrivers. And I think it was my babysitter that used to complain at me for using my teeth to strip wires. (Which is how I discovered that phone wires have enough current in them to shock you.) Now that I’m an adult I get to do all that stuff guilt-free.

Hrmm, more things happened but as usual I’m old and can’t remember much. Molly came by to pick up all my boxes because she’s moving to D.C. I’ve been texting the hell out of Jessica this weekend, and she is currently watching the pilot episode of Roswell because I ranted to her about it, so I might have a new recruit for that show. Tomorrow night is The Phone Show, which I’m being ordered to clean up my act on. (No more cursing.) I think that’s it. Time to go watch the rest of episode #10 in season #3 before I go to sleep.

Geocaching in Tangent

Biked about 15 miles today, looking for Geocaches. Had to quit when the battery on my cell phone died. Took a few pictures.


Closing in on a cache.


A microcache, hanging from a tree.


I think I’m going to bye this truck.


Hey look, a 38-year-old car for just $4,000!


A ripped up old chair with an arm missing for FREE!

Went Geocaching yesterday too. We did 8 or 9 of them during a hike. Had Mexican food and saw Knowing, which was a really bizarre movie.

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