Saturday, August 3, 2013

League of Extraordinary Bloggers: I Have a Dream...

It's League of Extraordinary Bloggers Time once again kids! So what's the topic this week? 


Oh Brian... this one is killing me. 

There's a reason I waited this long into the week to write this post (actually, there are several... but let me just focus on one). I've been having such a hard time determining just what my "dream" is... and it's really bumming me out. For those of you that don't want to read down through a bunch of existential bulls**t on the part of this blogger, scroll down now. I put a dream in almost as a white flag, signalling surrender. I came up with something. But boy did it take me a while to get there. 

I used to think my dream was to become a published author or poet. But I haven't sat down to write anything non-blog related (with a very few poetic exceptions) in years. I invest so much of my time these days into work, family, and collecting/blogging that it leaves with me with little time to sleep much less dream

Me... 'cept different.
Right now I sit here and stare at this computer screen and for the first time since I've started to write this blog... the thing I'm writing about (taking a good long look at myself) makes me feel genuinely scared of what to actually put into words and/or depressed by what it implies about me.

Me... 'cept different.
What do I want out of life? Do I want to see how many toys I can accumulate? Do I want to keep writing this blog forever? Well... yes. Sort of. I'd like to think that's not ALL I want. But what else? What else is there to me? 

Oh... nope. Just more toys apparently.
For reasons I won't go into great personal detail over, I feel like the father-and-husband parts of my life are pretty well covered for the most part. I am by no means a perfect at either... but I am trying. And that puts me pretty far ahead of the curve. So what do I want to achieve past maintaining the basic and emotional needs of my family? What do I want to achieve beyond my own ridiculous (and literally quite often childish) consumerist impulse gratifications?  

Me... 'cept- No actually this one's pretty accurate.

I. Don't. Know. And that is pants-s**ttingly terrifying. 

In his book Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs Chuck Klosterman writes: “In and of itself, nothing really matters. What matters is that nothing is ever in and of itself.” I don't know why I wrote that in here except that I love the quote and have been desperately been looking for ways to shoe-horn it into any and all conversations (My kids are getting tired of hearing it when they ask for Cheerios in the morning.) No, I guess it reverberates for me here because I want to be able to tie all the things I love about this blog into some sort of direction for my... life? I want to feel like all the weird little parts of my collecting and blogging could be rolled up into one idea and become something bigger than the sum of its parts. 

I guess in my wildest dreams I would be like that Toyhunter guy on the Travel channel:

Me... all up in your attics, b**ches.
I've mentioned to my wife more than once that I would love to open up some sort of old collectibles shop, with a focus on toys. Happy Meal toys, old action figures, anything I could hunt down and bring back I guess. I would want to instill that sense of wonder that I always had when I was a kid walking in through the door of a toy store... but these would all be secondhand. I'd have a few long-boxes for old comics I'd found, and have sections for old collectible board-games and LEGO sets, and whatever the hell else I could find to sell in there. I'd go hunting for stuff EVERYWHERE. 

I know it would probably be doomed to fail, because I'm not terribly savvy... and brick-and-mortar stores are swiftly being eaten by online shopping... ESPECIALLY the secondary market. And honestly, I'm not terribly good at like... letting go of toys once I've gotten ahold of them. 

And to be honest, I worked as the toy department manager for a large retail store chain and it left me completely unsmiling in every aisle. Remember 1998? The year Furbies came out for the first time? I was working the Christmas season as the Manager of a toy department, fielding ridiculously threatening telephone calls, and getting literally spit at (not actually on) in my store. Because of those experiences, I know toys are serious business and I don't know if it would be something I could convert to a realistic business model without it eating a hole in the lining of my stomach. But a guy can dream right? 

If I can dream selfishly of a house big enough to store all the books, and toys, and comics, and DVDs, and collector's cards, and games and other childish crap that I want without having to cram it all into one little room... Then I can certainly dream of a job I go to whistling every day because half the people looking on will be asking themselves: "Where does he get those wonderful toys?? 

Whew. That's it for me THANK GOODNESS. I'm sorry if that got weird. Let's pretend I was sleep-blogging, and this whole post was just a bad dream. 

Let's see what the rest of the League is dreaming about: 

- NeedlESSentials waxes poetic about how the past just doesn't seem to be holding up to the reality of today... and how he dreams of a time when ALL the toys of the past get cool new updates to reflect how cool they felt way back when.

- Joe Burden of The Mos Espa Collection tells us the future he dreams of... which quite literally depends on the futures he can dream of. 

- Infinite Hollywood dreams of a simpler MotUC purchasing system. 

- Geekshow Ink features a dream that I think a lot of us bloggers share. 

- G.I. Jigsaw gives us the run-down for his dream monument to a particular kind of geekiness. 

- Random Nerdness throws a classic geek-dream into the ring. 

- Thirtyish Year-Old Boy has basically just outed himself as an enemy of the X-Men... and I guess that's okay. Just a bad dream? 

- Jathniel Vasquez dreams of trapping mostalgic lightning in a bottle. 

- Vikki Verka's dream is a little catty. 

- Our fearless leader Brian over at Cool and Collected has a pretty awesome, achievable, and accessible dream. Check this one out for sure!

- Yelinna over at Travling Pics dreams of keeping things simple. 

- Tintod over at Junk Fed dreams of a place where geeks can go and not be judged... to... well... to... I'll just let you read it yourself. 

- Miss M from Diary of a Dorkette is, if not on exactly the same page, at least writing in the same dream journal as Geekshow Ink above.

That's it for me tonight kids! I'm off to slumber and dream of Geeky Goodwill Goodies! Until I'm back next time to write about them, Happy Hunting (and sweet dreams)!


  1. I did my dream....and I am getting so tired of it. My own Monster Cafe was such a great concept and still is...But is long hours.

    So owning a toy store...Ughhh...

    1. I'm really sorry to hear that. I think what I've read of Monster Cafe so far is amazing! I hope you find a way to refresh your interest in that particular dream.

  2. Man, there is a reason that I chose to skip this week's "assignment" and this hits pretty close to it.


    Dreams are nice when you can't face the reality of your situation. When you look around you and all you see is stuff trying to fill holes in your life.

    You have a family, which I envy more than any collection of toys or books or collectibles.

    Anyways, I like the toy store dream. Yup.

    1. Heh. Thanks. I should have taken the same route this particular week. I feel like I was just way too introspective about it all.

  3. A while back I heard a saying from an antique dealer that you should buy what you love and sell what you hate, which is why his booth was filled with porcelain and china! I get seller's remorse way too often when I flip a cool vintage toy, that I don't think I could ever do this, but if you used the business to continually trade up until you got the mintiest, most beautiful example of an item, while selling inferior ones along the way, I think you could do it.

    But the next time I'm in Maine, I'm gonna swing by your shop--it sounds awesome! ;)

    1. Maybe Brian! You've got me thinking now! Thanks!

  4. The toy store dream is a a great one, but I do see your concerns. For a time I was considering opening a comic/collectibles shop. I came to me senses. Sadly, mom and pops are fading fast. I think maybe we are all looking for something to validate our hobbies. This topic prompted an internal voice to ask, "what do you wanna do with your life?" I still don't have a very good answer.

    1. Validating our hobbies seems to be a sort of theme this week for all the League...

  5. Great post, man. As someone who does his own share of dreamning, dont stress over with the practicality of your dreams. They're dreams - they're supposed to be a relief and a salve from life's other stresses. And they dont have to be fully-formed - just comforting :)

    That said, I briefly had the same idea about a shop such as you described - and I dismissed it because of the same concerns you mentioned. But, i think an online store (while less man-cave-ish and fun) is a great way to test the waters without much overhead (like renting a storefront..). Just my two cents (for your "Have a penny, take a penny" dish by the register)

    Geez, this is long. Great blog - keep writing and I'll keep reading.

    1. Not too long at all! Thanks for the kind words, and you've gotten me thinking even more about this now!


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