Archive for halloween

Thrift Store Hallo-weekends: Universal Studios Monsters Magic Pictures Activity Book

Posted in thrift store finds with tags , , , , , , , , , , on October 26, 2013 by Christopher Pearce

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This week, we’re looking at Universal Studios Monsters Magic Pictures, a coloring/activity book published by Golden Books/Western Publishing in 1992. I have no idea what the retail price of this was, but I got it for a dollar in a Goodwill store in Hocking Hills, Ohio.

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As I mentioned a few weeks ago, the Universal Studios Monsters brand is the Cadillac of Halloween-related products in my eyes. Anyone can sell a generic flat-topped Frankenstein’s Monster costume for Halloween… or a kinda/sorta Creature from the Black Lagoon decoration to hang on your door, but Universal has the market cornered on the look of these classic ghouls.

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Chalkboard Drawings: The “Halloween Countdown, Part 1” edition

Posted in chalkboard drawings with tags , , , , , on October 7, 2013 by Christopher Pearce

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I draw a picture of myself on my classroom’s chalkboard everyday. I collect those pictures as camera phone photos and post them on Sundays. See the rest here.

As is my tradition every October, the chalkboard becomes a countdown to Halloween with some of the most famous ghouls in monster-dom.

Weirdly, although the Halloween theme didn’t officially start until Tuesday,Monday’s chalkboard drawing was also one of a monster, if you think about it.

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Thrift Store Hallo-weekends: Monster Force Dracula (Playmates Toys)

Posted in island of misfit toys with tags , , , , , , , , on October 4, 2013 by Christopher Pearce

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Monster Force was a short lived animated series from the 1990’s produced by Universal Animation Studios. The show pit technologically equipped monster hunters against The Creatures of the Night, a catch-all name for some of the more famous ghouls. Since this show was produced by Universal, they had access to the “official” library of Universal Monsters brand were able to make several visual and narrative references to those classic films.

I had never heard of the show before seeing this toy in a comic convention discount bin. I paid $3 dollars for this toy.

We’re looking at Dracula, the de facto leader of The Creatures of the Night. This action figure was made by Playmates Toys, purveyors of lines such as Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Star Trek, among many others.

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odds and ends: more oral surgery, halloween

Posted in odds and ends with tags , , , , , , , , on November 2, 2012 by Christopher Pearce

If you follow me on the various social networks I take part in you know this already but… I had my final two wisdom teeth removed this pat Tuesday. I’ve been putting this off for (no kidding I’m ashamed to say) YEARS now so when I was up all night Saturday racked with pain, I had no one but myself to blame. Ideally, having a procedure like this done would be something a teacher would try and schedule for a spring break or a summer vacation. I was betting I’d be able to make it to our school’s winter break and I lost.

It seems small potatoes when compared to what my many teacher friends in New York and New Jersey are contending with right now but I hate missing a big chunk of school like this. One day here or there is fine, but anything more than that and it’s bad news all around. Bad for students… bad for the school… and bad for me. I’ve been feeling nothing but down in the dumps about this since Monday afternoon when I realized I’d be out for at least a day, probably two.

The procedure went without a hitch but I spent much of Wednesday in a gross amount of pain. Seriously, you wouldn’t BELIEVE what my pillow looked like when I woke up from my post-operation nap; it was like something out of one of those torture porn movies. Since then, I’ve been getting by on a steady diet of painkillers and soft foods. Tonight I successfully chowed down on boxed macaroni and cheese and considered it a success.

The funny thing is, this same thing happened to me around this time last year and I did a week-long series of comics about that experience, which you can read if you click here. The only difference between last year and this year is I smartened up enough to take time off from work. Last year, I went into school and tried to “be a hero” as it were. My reward was a surprise walk-though inspection from the assistant principal; he was disappointed I was sitting at my desk, less active than a teacher should be during a sustained silent reading period. I had forgotten all about that incident until this morning but it made me GLAD I took today off. The last thing I needed is to be judged on my teaching today by someone who wouldn’t take the “whole picture” into consideration.

I go back tomorrow. Half of my mouth will be wadded up with cotton. I have a low impact agenda for tomorrow, including administering a “common assessment” for the 9th grade students and a lesson I hope to pull together for my 12th grade class by waking up early tomorrow and hitting the 24 hour Meijer for supplies.

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Although I was in pain, I would have disappointed my boys greatly if I hadn’t sucked it up and squeezed into my Halloween costume this year.

…besides, it wouldn’t have been very “Batman” of me to wuss out, right? Rest assured, the costume was peeled off and I was back on the couch recuperating about two minutes after this snapshot was taken.

odds and ends: my halloween decorations

Posted in odds and ends with tags , , , , , , on November 1, 2012 by Christopher Pearce

Last year, I showed off all my Christmas toys and decorations… so this year, I thought I’d do the same with my Halloween stuff!

I love the Universal Studios Monsters and this is my shelf dedicated to them. The three busts came with a special edition of Universal’s Legacy Collection of Dracula, Frankenstein’s Monster, and The Wolfman. They’re absolutely gorgeous and while two of these go into storage the other 11 months of the year, ol’ Frankie stays out year-round.

I’ve been keeping up with the Universal Monsters Minimates for the last few years, more ore less. I buy the heavies, as you can see here… but it’s an impressive collection Art Asylum  has put together. The only biggie I’m missing from years’ past is The Bride of Frankenstein and of course, this year’s offerings: The Mummy and The Hunchback of Notre Dame.

I’ve gotten a couple of good deals on LEGOs in the past few months, the best being this huge version of Hogwarts! Although it’s not precisely “Halloween” I still think it’s a nice fit as a decoration. I decided to throw the Ghostbusters and Doctor Who in here because… why not?

When I was in college, my girlfriend and I collected these Simpsons: Treehouse of Horror Happy Meal toys. They’re surprisingly durable; although they’re almost 10 years old now, most of the light up features in these bad boys still work! I’m always meaning to add to this collection; I’d like some more of the Simpsons clan… but I guess that’s something to think about for next year.

I could use a couple more Nightmare Before Christmas toys in this display, although the ones I have, I love. Even the Jack Skellington is a favorite, even though his legs constantly separate from his hips. The Mer-woman and Igor I picked up last year for $4 bucks apiece online.

Windup toys are a small collection I have that have snuck up on me. I bought one for myself when I was living in Brooklyn. Before I knew it, I had more than two dozen. They’d end up in my Christmas stocking, or as a gift from a student. My favorites of these are the Halloween/monster windups my mother ends up finding and sending to us every year.

Elliot and Henry LOVE these, so they’re on a lower shelf. They can play with them whenever they feels like it.

pearce family holiday drawings: halloween 2012

Posted in illustration with tags , , , , , , , , , on October 1, 2012 by Christopher Pearce

For the past few years, I’ve taken some time out of my comic schedule to celebrate Halloween by drawing a picture of Ellen and I with the kids in some kind of Halloween motif. I also color the thing, something that’s not entirely my forte, but I give it a shot.

Two years ago, I drew us as Ghostbusters. Last year, I went the Universal movie monster route. This year, I decided to stick with the monsters but go a little modern.

Ellen is Freddy Krueger, I’m Jason Voorhees, Elliot is Chuckie from Child’s Play, and Henry is Jigsaw from the Saw series of films.

There are things I really like about this drawing, I guess. Ellen’s in a fun, dynamic pose. I always feel like she gets the short end of the stick in these holiday drawings, so that’s a nice thing. Beyond that however… I don’t know. I’m not as happy with this years’ drawing as I have been for past Halloweens. I guess the “monsters” the kids are just don’t pop the same way they have in the last two drawings.

Of course, I’m over thinking this a whole lot. I’m aware.

odds and ends

Posted in odds and ends with tags , , , , , , , , , , on November 11, 2011 by Christopher Pearce

Students and teachers alike are doing the countdown to Thanksgiving. As I’ve mentioned before, I’m a product of New York schools and NY has some nicely permissive policies when dealing with days off.

For example, I received most of the Jewish holidays off when I was growing up; Southwest Ohio provides no days off for these holidays. Despite our capital being named for the man, we also do not receive Columbus Day off. Most Ohio schools run from Labor Day to Thanksgiving without one day off for either teachers or students; Turkey Day holds special meaning to those of us who have had our nose to the grindstone for all those weeks.

Of course, we DO get out of school obscenely early- when most of my NYC teachers are sweating June out in classrooms, I’ve already been done with teaching for two weeks.

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In other school news, Ohio voters defeated Senate Bill 5!

I had very little doubt the unpopular law would be shown the door, but I’ve learned you never can tell when it comes to Ohio. I do know that the county I lived in was one of the few in the state to unanimously vote YES on 5. It’s hard to handicap these things.

I would be more excited about this, except I am absolutely positive there are politicians ensconced somewhere in the state’s capital, scheming of a new way to take away my health insurance and dock my salary.

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I didn’t share pictures of Halloween, did I? Oh well. They’re behind the cut, if you’re interested.

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2011-2012 school year: suspenders are… cool?

Posted in 2011-2012 school year, Uncategorized with tags , , , , on October 31, 2011 by Christopher Pearce

This one’s been drawn for awhile, but I decided to sit on it until Halloween so I could share my costume with y’all. The old bald guy character appeared in this comic a few weeks ago.

chalkboard drawings: halloween edition, part two

Posted in chalkboard drawings with tags , , , , , on October 24, 2011 by Christopher Pearce

We’re still in Halloween week. I spent two days of this particular week in the computer lab of our school. More on that later… here are the chalkboard drawings!

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pearce family holiday drawings: halloween 2011

Posted in sketchbook with tags , , , , , , , on October 6, 2011 by Christopher Pearce

Every year around this time, I draw a Halloween-themed picture of our family. Last year, I did us as Ghostbusters. This year, I went the classic movie monster route:

I was sorely tempted to do us as The Addams Family and draw Elliot as Wednesday, given his propensity for “spinner shirts” but I relented at the last second. I’m fairly happy with the drawing, save for Henry who I think looks a lot older than his almost-2 years.

Here’s the drawing done in black, white, and grays, going for more of a Universal Monster look.

Ultimately, I let Ellen choose which drawing I’d post on social networking sites and the like. She went with color and that’s probably the best call.