The Warm And Folksy, But Also Somewhat Hip, Story Of Mostly Purple Patty And The Singing Aardvark

…co-starring her moderately wealthy Aunt Olivia

 

CritterCon 11

Trip Day Twelve (By Daisy)

Daisy here again, folks. I figured since I started the actual trip report, I’d finish it.

Our trip home up I-5 was pretty uneventful, especially since the Bus left Gorman at 5 in the morning while we were all asleep. We were passing Fresno when we finally got up.

What can I say to sum this trip up? Our traveling band was huge, the trip was unique, as most of them are, and the con itself was just as fun as ever. We saw friends old & new, ate great food and did fun stuff. I guess you can’t ask for more than that.

I need to sign off now, because I seriously need a nap before Max and I begin packing up to leave for GenCon tonight. Yes, we are crazy.

I hope you enjoyed this year’s report. Next year, Daddy will be back to doing it.

Live long and prosper,

Daisy

CritterCon 11 is over

But we will all be back next year for

CritterCon 12

Billy The Slow Loris Goes To The Beach

…slowly, of course

 

CritterCon 11

Trip Day Eleven (By Misty)

Hello, everybody! Misty here with your trip report for today.

We started the day with an early breakfast at a campground about 50 miles north of Critter City. As always, it was scrummy and we left the table with full bellies.

(Silky: It was a Waddlefest!)


Our first stop was about two hours away, so we all just chilled out with some light filler games. I was unsuccessful in killing Doctor Lucky, but was top of the bean pile at Bohnanza.

(Daisy: I could never get a clear shot at the old bastard.)

(Janet: Some of us played Dino Hunt, which was pretty fun.)


It surprised none of us that The Doctor chose a Giant Jesus as our first stop. What did surprise us was that there were TWO Giant Jesus statues facing each other across the Texas/Oklahoma state line.

(Sasha: It may be time to stage an intervention with Daddy.)

(Luke: Several years too late for that.)


It seems that in 1960, the small towns of Rigley, Oklahoma and Barsonville, Texas, had some sort of row going about who got more business from travelers on the Texas state highway that runs between them. Being firmly in the Bible Belt (or what passes for it here on Earth 1-G), each town decided to build a statue of Jesus. You’ve probably figured out what happened next. Years of design changes and finally, two Giant Jesus statues facing each other across the highway. The one on the Texas side is taller at 110 feet tall, but the one on the Oklahoma side (100 feet tall) is much more detailed and better looking.

(Roxie: They are quite impressive, as these things go.)

(Sasha: Still not as impressive as those humongous toilet paper rolls used to be.)


For a “donation” of $2.00 per statue, you can go up to the observation areas in their heads. The views are pretty good and the tour guides are friendly young local folks who tell you how great their side’s statue is while stopping short of declaring the other statue rubbish. Several of our group never even took the tour, but The Doctor and Auntie Mary always do.

(Leon: They are not right in the head, those two.)

(Sadie: Few Humans are.)

To get to our next and final roadside attraction, The Doctor once again shrank us down to shoebox size and kicked in the booster drives. We cruised along major motorways at up to 200 miles per hour and got to our final destination just as we finished watching the 1959 version of King Kong which has all the stop motion done by Ray Harryhausen. It’s a really great remake.

(Goldie: With added dinosaurs and the spider canyon scene!)

(Max: And a good long scene of Kong being towed back to New York.)

Hanson, Kansas, was our stop for The World Famous Scarecrow Town. While this place was lower on the Creep-O-Meter than Skeleton Town, it is still bloody unnerving. After half an hour among the 500+ scarecrows, we all left. It took another hour for the fur on my back to lie down.

(Daisy: New rule: Only one creepyass stop per trip from now on!)

(Janet: YES! The wind moved one of those scarecrows and I pooped myself.)

(Leon: I’ll be having fucking scarecrow nightmares for a month.)

From there on, it was all about us taking folks home by going back to our world and dropping off the Hildreths, The Joneses, Auntie Avy & Leon, and Auntie Ginie & Roxy. Before returning Uncle Gabriel to Los Angeles, we stopped in New Mexico for an excellent Southwestern Dinner.

(Luke: It was delicious and plentiful.)


We are ending our night in an RV park in Gorman, at the top of the grapevine. We’ll leave very early and be home before noon tomorrow, which is good because I’ll be starting a month long shoot on a film down in Florida and Luke is starting a 3 week run on the Orpheum Circuit with his song & dance act.

(Daisy: Go see him folks, because he is really good!)

With that, Dear Readers, I end my bit of this trip report. Have a wonderful evening or day, depending upon where you are.

Misty

Destination Sign When We Started: El Dorado
Destination Sign When We Stopped: Shangri La

QM Radio Station: 70’s Funk

A History Of Historic Historians

…it’s not hysterical

 

CritterCon 11

Con Day Four (By Penny)

Hi, I’m Penny and I won the writing lottery to post the final day’s report from CritterCon 11.

We had our final breakfast at Waffles From Outer Space this morning. I’ll miss their tuna & sardine waffles.

(Luke: I had the bacon and more bacon waffles, with bacon on the side.)

(Sadie: I had waffles smothered in beef gravy.)

Once breakfast was over, we all went to the main gaming hall and played games. I got in three games of Feline Love Letter, a game of Zombie Dice and a game of Ticket to Ride India before I had to go meet several of the female critters to hit the Dealer’s Room. We spent a couple of hours there and spent quite a bit of money. My AniBank card got seriously overheated.

(Leon: I redlined my AniBank card buying miniatures, dice and terrain.)

(Goldie: I managed to stay well below my card’s limit.)

(Daisy: You guys do know that Silky founded AniBank back in 1984, right?)

(Leon: WHAT?)

(Silky: Yep, it’s true. Started it with only a couple of million bucks.)


After the Dealer’s Room trip, we all joined up with the other NHT and went to watch the finals of the Dungeons & Dogs LARP. It was fun to watch and a group from Colorado won.

(Max: They were a well balanced group and they made sure to check for traps frequently.)

(Janet: Unlike our group at home, where Moose now plays Stumpy, the one legged gnome and Pixie is Ulondra, the elf with a metal hand.)

When that was over, we made one last pass through the Dealer’s Room, then met up with the humans for cold beverages at Mink’s Cold Drinks. About the time we got there, the con ended.

(Silky: It’s always sad when a con ends.)

(Daisy: Unless you were running it, in which case it’s time to tap a keg.)

Dinner was not planned until much later, because the Post-Con Cooldown Party starts 30 minutes after the con closes. As they did last year, the Cross family supplied 50 kinds of ice cream to go with the 50 sorts of pie served at the party. It was all very delicious and we ate too much while saying goodbye to friends.

(Leon: Sweet Mother of Sylvester, can Uncle Doc pack away the pie & ice cream!)


When the party was over, we all got on the Magic Bus and left Critter City, We also left our reality and went back to Earth 1-G in 1980. Apparently, tomorrow we have a couple of roadside stops to make before everyone gets home.

(Sasha: Whoever thinks it won’t involve at least one Giant Jesus, say “aye”. Ah yes, crickets.)


Thank you so much for reading this. I hope to return to this con next year.

Penny

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A Cow With A Plan

…a plan to run straight through a new garden

 

CritterCon 11

Con Day Three (By Roxie)

Greetings everyone! I’m Roxie and here is my Saturday con report.

Most of us had breakfast early at Pancakeville, but those who overdid themselves at the dance last night decided to sleep in a bit until their pain relievers took effect.

(Sasha: I think I threw my back out dancing.)

(Misty: Luke had cramps in three of his legs this morning.)

Rather than go straight to gaming, most of us non-humans went to the Critter City Animal Amusement Park. This is a one acre 5 level park that has all sorts of fun things for animals to do. No humans except for the staff are allowed. It is truly fun for all ages, since there were kittens & puppies playing right alongside elderly critters.

(Daisy: That place is great, especially since the renovated it and added 2 more levels.)

After that bit of fun, we went to the con and played the usual mixed bag of games. I know that Leon, Max, Buster, Moose and Ollie played some sort of big wargame.

(Leon: It was “Battlefront: Central Park 1992”. There were 16 players in the game, which is based on the Neighborhood Wars that dogs & cats fought tn back then.)

Daisy ran two sessions of D&D.

(Daisy: “Tunnels of the Kobold King” and “The Flying Islands”)


Luke & Misty gave a seminar on acting for roleplayers.

(Misty: It went very well and we signed a right gob of photos.)

I’m not sure about everyone else.

(Janet: I spent most of the day playing Arkham Horror.)

(Sadie: I played in a Toon game with Sasha & Chance, then we cruised the Dealer’s Room.)

(Silky: I got into a poker game. Came out $1,500.00 ahead.)

I played a game of Nuns On The Run, which was great. Later, I played Settlers of CATan, which is always fun and challenging. Finally, I got into a game of Blue Rose with Daisy, Snowy and Janet. That lasted until 9:30, after which we went to yet another big party.

This party was also part LARP, since everyone was either a spy, an asset, a liability, an innocent civilian, or any mix of those four. There were alliances, betrayals, double/triple/quadruple crosses, assassinations and plenty of shaken, not stirred vodka martinis. I know my Mom, Ginie, killed two Chinese spies and my Auntie Avis double crossed Uncle Doc (KGB) and Uncle Peter (MI6) before she got double crossed by Silky and some young human lady. The party lasted until 2:00 and we all had big fun.

(Silky: Auntie Avy was laughing at the looks on their faces while I was busy turning her over to S.H.I.E.L.D. Hahaha!)

(Leon: I was just an innocent Senator from New Hampshire who got blackmailed into working for SPECTRE.)

(Daisy: Dude, you volunteered to work for them when the guaranteed you re-election!)


And now I need my beauty sleep, my friends. Come back tomorrow for more reportage.

Roxie

It’s Only A Crazy Scheme If You Fail

…uh, no

 

 

CritterCon 11

Con Day Two (By Goldie)

Hello! I’m Goldie and this is my first time at a con like this one and my first time writing something like this.

I’d like to start by thanking the Fabulous Four for helping Penny and myself get used to being in human bodies part of the time. The whole walking on two legs thing is both hard and terrifying.

(Silky: You’re welcome. Using an android body is weird and scary at first, but you and Penny got the hang of it fast.)

Since I’m a total rookie at this, Sasha suggested that I skip the meal reports and just talk about other stuff, especially gaming, so here goes.

(Sasha: Breakfast at Chez Mom’s, lunches mostly at hotdog ot taco stands, Dinner at Big Slabs O’ Meat.)

This morning, a bunch of us entered The Cursed Necropolis, a LARP for humans and critters. Uncle Doc, Auntie Grace, Auntie Mary and 5 critters entered through the north gate. My Dad & Mom, Auntie Avis and 5 of us critters entered via the west gate. Two other groups of 8 players entered through the east and south gates. The object was to grab loot, kill or avoid the undead, enter the Defiled Cathedral and perform the Ritual of Purification, then leave the city with our loot.

(Luke: That first wave of zombies scared the hell out of me.)

(Penny: A bit later, we heard Uncle Doc yell “Ghouls? I HATE fuckin’ ghouls!” from three blocks away.)

This was a holodeck style LARP and things seemed very real, visually and auditorily. The various smells they piped in seemed to affect the humans, but most of us NHT found that part very weak. The whole think was lots of fun and Our group was first in the cathedral. Sadly, Mom, Penny and Luke’s characters died buying us time to complete the ritual. Even more sadly, Uncle Doc’s team beat us out of the city by 4 minutes and had twice the loot we had. They also had only 3 characters left.

(Daisy: That was Daddy, Ollie and me. Everyone else got done in by either zombie ogres or that goddamn vampire that I finally staked.)

After the LARP, all the humans, all of us dogs, Max, Janet, and Willy all went to soak in mud. Daisy & Silky assured me that I would love it.

Well, I did love it. We all got put in tubs of warm mud where we rested for about 30 minutes. Then we all got cleaned up before getting massages. It was very relaxing and now everybody smells very nice.

(Sasha: I would have liked Dead Raccoon better that Warm Spice. Now I smell like fuckin’ banana bread or some shit.)


Uncle Doc and most of the other humans ran off to do their Old Time Radio Show. This year it was called “Tales of the Weird” and had something to do with vampires and grave robbers. I know that Dad played “Inspector Knox” and Auntie Avis played “Widow Barton”. I’m told it was a hit show. After that one, Uncle Doc, Uncle Gabriel, Auntie Mary, Luke & Misty did a half hour show called “The Adventures of Rocco & Maxie”.

(Silky: It was hilarious! Being an old gal, I had to stop and pee three times due to laughing so hard.)

It’s hard to keep track of what everyone played, but I know what games I played. I was in a D&D 5e + Steampunk game with Daisy & Max, then played in a long Savage Worlds game with Dad, Silky and Pixie. After that, I was getting pretty tired, so I went back to the suite for a nap. I woke up just in time to grab some room service chow with Luke, Misty, Silky and Snowy, then haul tail to the Friday Night Dance Party.

There were about 1,500 humans and 2,000 NHT at that party, most of us dancing up a storm. They had maybe a dozen DJs in rotation, including Silky (she was in a human body). The party went from 10:00 pm until 3:00 in the morning, but I left to crash at 2:15.

(Leon: I was there until the end. Every part of my body aches.)

(Sasha: So was I and I may need a wheelchair for the rest of the con.)

That’s pretty much all I have to report. Thanks for reading, folks!

Goldie

Five Things Not To Tell A Dragon

…#3: “I have a big bag of gold right here!”

 

CritterCon 11

Con Day One (By Max)

Hiya, folks! I’m writing this late and so I’m going to just give a basic rundown of what everyone did. If I leave anything out, I’m sure a commenter will correct me.

Breakfast: was at Waffles From Outer Space. That was the last time all of us were in the same place today.

Gaming: Daisy, myself, Sasha, Silky, Luke, Misty, the rest of our home gaming posse, our critter friends from on the bus and that spaniel named Chance all spent the day gaming in various ways. We plated boardgames, card games, LARPs, RPGs, minis games and video games. There were some quick passes through the Dealer’s room, but it was gaming from about 9:00 am until midnight for most of us.

Grace, Auntie Caroline and Auntie Mary mostly played boardgames and card games. They walked through the dealer’s room, too. Not sure if they played any RPGs. At a couple of points, Auntie Holly joined up with them.

Auntie Avis walked the Dealer’s Room, played some boardgames, played in a 4 hour RPG session and went to at least 2 seminars.

Mr. C, Spike, Gabriel and Brian were all over the place. I know Mr. C and Spike were each on a couple of seminar panels and attended at least one more. All of the guys played an RPG or two. They all walked the dealer’s room. I think Gabriel did some open mic thing in the new Purple Dragon Inn they set up for folks to relax in.

Lunch: I know Mr. C had lunch at Tamalemania and I think Grace ate at Killerburger. Daisy & I grabbed lunch at a new deli, Moe’s Bronx Deli. Most of the rest of the NHT went to a new NHT only place in the underground area. It’s called Wild Style and I hear it’s pretty good. Oh, and Sasha, Buster & Chance ate at Pizza My Heart.

Games Played: I asked around and here are some of the games we all played.

D&D Hillfolk Seventh Sea Dread Fluxx Unfair Gaslands Scythe Elder Sign Terraforming Mars Gorilla City: The Beginning Dungeon Dice Bean Trader Squirrel Invasion Savage Worlds Munchkin Zombie Dice Love Letter Power Grid Gloom Kingdomino Once Upon a Time.

Dinner: The humans all ate at Mistress Diana’s Dungeon Diner. We NHT mostly had food delivered to our games.

The Big Costume Party: The theme this year was Star Power and you had to dress up as somebody from your favorite space based sci fi series or movie. Naturally, Daisy & I and the gang were decked out as Starfleet crew. Mr. & Mrs. C and several of their friends went with Guardians of the Galaxy. Mr.C. Went as Groot and never once said anything other than “I am Groot” all night. Mrs. C went as Rocket. There were also lots of Firefly and Star Wars and Whovians and others. It was a great party and it’s a good thing I did not activate the intoxication subroutine in my body, because Daisy & Janet both did and then got hammered. If you have never tucked two giggling women into bed, it’s quite an experience.

So that’s my rather short report. Goldie is up for tomorrow.

Be seeing you.

Max

Doctor Silkmelon And Mister Porkwaffle Attend A Dance

…nothing at all like hilarity ensued

CritterCon 11

Trip Day Six/Con Day 0 (By Silky)

Hello everyone! It has been a fairly busy day, so let’s dive right into our recap.

Our first and only stop was at The World Famous Monster Cars Of Texas. This place has 205 cars, pickups, big rigs and motorcycles modified to look like monsters, or as Max said “mutant Transformers from Hell”. It’s a pretty interesting place and you can see how the mods on the cars has improved over the years. Some of them are pretty scary looking, but others are just kind of goofy. We were here for 90 minutes, plus another 15 in the gift shop.

(Sasha: I gave serious thought to tossing some nanites around, programmed to rebuild those cars and bring them to life.)

During the hour drive to the con, everyone went to the Slide Room and Daddy set it to Waterslide. It was a cool and refreshing and fun time. It was also during this time that we returned to our world.

(Goldie: Goodbye, alternate 1980!)

As we drove into the Critter City dome we saw video ads for a new restaurant, Tamalemania! And the newest All Goat Review, starring our sisters, Abigail & Beatrice. There were also ads for various con events.

(Misty: Odds of The Doctor eating at that tamale place? Dead certain!)

(Daisy: Yep, Daddy loves his tamales.)

(Sasha: Have to get tix to see Abbie & Bea!)

Our rooms & suites this year are at the brand new Hilton Underground Hotel. Critter City has been putting all new and many old businesses underground for the last three years. This has freed up a good chunk of land inside the dome, most of which is now set up as assorted pet parks.

(Penny: I need to try out that cat park.)

As soon as we NHT got to our spacious suite, Sasha ported in our pals from home. It was great to see Ollie, Snowy, Moose, Happy, Willy, Hector, Suzie, Pixie, Clara and Buster. There is also a new friend, Chance, who Sasha insists is just a springer spaniel, not a young boy in a spaniel body.

(Sasha: Yep, he’s just a nice young dog!)

(Chance: WOOF! Hahahahaha!)

I should note that while we are at the con, the Bus and all the SmartBots went off to BotEarth 3-B for a little vacation of their own.

(Luke: I wonder if the Bus will meet another nice vehicle for some…well, I’m not sure what.)

After an hour of everyone getting settled in, our now huge (34 sapients!) group headed over to grab our badges and swag bags. Turns out this year’s con theme is Spies, so the badges look like badges for MI6, CIA, KGB, and a host of others, including UNIT, IMF and U.N.C.L.E. The swag bag was a heavy duty cardboard briefcase. The con book inside was done up like a training manual and a bunch of dossier files. There were the usual discount cards for local businesses, a Spy vs Spy card game, a couple of spy dog/cat/pig/bunny/ferret minis, a commemorative D20 and a cool ballpoint pen that can fire little Nerf bullets. The wait in line to get this stuff was pretty short and the PA system was playing Bond movie theme songs.

(Leon: Leon Crane, Agent of S.H.E.I.L.D. here, baby!)

(Max: My name is Bunnington, Max Bunnington, of MI6. License to thrill.)

(Daisy: Ooh, baby!)


We left the convention center and walked across the street to our traditional hot dog lunch at Ed’s Big Weenie. We ate chili dogs and corn dogs and all sorts of hot dogs. As always, they were great. You just can’t beat Ed’s Big Weenie!

(Sadie: I love Ed’s Big Weenie.)

The next few hours were spent reading the con book, napping, talking with friends who had just arrived at the con and for a few of our party, getting laid.

(Max: Hey, rabbit here!)

(Luke: Hey, old horndog here!)


Around 6:00 we all went to dinner with about 40 more friends. We went to Curry On Eating! and had some of their excellent Indian food. I had a mild curry, as did Mom and several other folks. Daddy, Uncle Peter and a bunch of other nuts had the hot curry, and it must have been very hot, judging from the sweating.

(Luke: It was two hours before I could feel my tongue again!)

Once dinner was done, we all strolled around town for an hour, then headed for the pre-convention Ice Cream Social/Bourbonfest. Those of us not feeling like partaking of booze ate some ice cream, then returned to our rooms. Sasha, Janet, Buster, Snowy, Sadie, Ollie and Chance the definitely a dog, all played games. I think Mom, Auntie Mary & Auntie Holly sat and chatted a while.

The rest of us showed up about 1:00 am in varied states of inebriation, except Uncle Spike, Moose and Pixie, who don’t drink, and Auntie Avis and Hector, who only drink a little.

(Roxie: Folks, Silky has some great stories to tell after about her third shot of bourbon.)

(Leon: The one about her shitting on Nixon’s shoe was hilarious!)

And now everyone is asleep and I’m finishing this up. Tomorrow, it’s con time!

De beaux rêves, mes amis.
Silky

Destination Sign When We Started: The Little House On The Prairie
Destination Sign When We Stopped: Nehwon

Bucky & Squint Meet Some Dames

…love was in the New Jersey air

CritterCon 11

Trip Day Five (By Sasha)

Hello, Dear Readers. Sasha here with all the trip news of the day. Before we get started, I’m going to answer the question that at least some of you long time readers might have: If it’s Tuesday and we are starting in Yuma Arizona and we need to be in Critter City around noon on Wednesday AND we want to stop and visit at least another dozen places, not counting lunches, HOW ARE WE GOING TO DO IT?

Simple answer: Time travel!

Somewhat more detailed answer: While we were sleeping last night, the Sweetie (the Bus) drove from Yuma to Lordsburg, New Mexico. We woke up there, started our day and stopped when we got to Aunt Pearl’s ranch (it being 1980 here, she’s still alive here and only 75 years old), near Van Horn, Texas. But then, two minutes after we got to Aunt Pearl’s front gate, which is 15 miles from the house. At that point, I gave everybody a Renewal Smoothie (new product from SJC Enterprises) to drink and we went back in time and space to Yuma at the same time we left Lordsburg. We stopped at several roadside attractions, ate Second Lunch, then, just before we got to Lordsburg, Daddy brought us back to Aunt Pearls and the two versions of us merged. Easy peasy!

Anyway, that’s why you’ll see the New Mexico and Texas stops before you see the Arizona stops. It was a fun day.

By now you all know that any meal on the bus rocks, so I won’t go into detail about breakfast, aside from saying that Daddy & Uncle Gabriel had us cracking up with another round of their Rocco and Maxie routine. Those two are some funny ass humans.

Since we hit so many stops today, I’m going to be rather brief describing them all.

New Mexico Stops

1: The Invisible House: Isn’t really invisible, but the outside is really well painted to blend in with the background and you can’t tell there is a house there until you damned near run into it.

2: The Robot Battlefield: This place is big, like, 200 acres big. The “robots” are made out of welded together pieces of junk and scrap metal. They come in a dizzying variety of sizes and shapes, all posed to simulate the aftereffects of a huge battle. You see all of this from a thankfully air conditioned bus. A very earnest young man told us the story of the war and the various areas of battle you see. It was really fun, took an hour and is well worth the $5.00 each we paid. The gift store has cold drinks, which we all partook of.

3: The Mountain Of The Lord: The Giant Jesus here is only 25 feet tall and made of pieces of old car bodies, but the mountain he stands on is a trip and a half. As usual, a guy and his twin brother got a message from God that they were sinners and better get their shit together by coming out here in the middle of the desert and building bunch of shit on a hill for the glory of the LORD! The only thing that differs them from the other religious wackos we’ve seen over the years is that Gordon and Landon Hall are African American. Kinda nice to see that white dudes have not cornered the market.

The mountain (a big hill, really) is covered in 283 scenes from the Bible. They range in quality from pretty well done to rather slapdash. They don’t charge to drive up to see old JC, but they do have a gift shop and they do take “offerings”.

4: Andrade’s General Store: This is just a humongous general store and cafe in the middle of nowhere, but damn, the food is great. They also sell lots of stuff from Mexico, which is why Daddy & Daisy now have so much Dia de Los Muertas stuff and a bunch of luchadore collectibles.

5: Monsters of the Desert #2: This is very much like the one on our world, but much newer and a second location (#1 is in northern Arizona). There are way fewer monsters, but the 7 they have are very well done and mostly from the movies, including giant ants from “Them”, the giant tarantula from “Tarantula” and a giant scorpion from “The Black Scorpion”

Texas Stops

1: Movie Town: This is a famous bunch of sets built for westerns and late 19th century movies. About half of it is Western Town and the other half is 1900 town. Both are still used for movies and television.

2: Big Bob’s Deadly Texas Museum: Big Bob must love murder, because this fair sized museum has exhibits for over 200 sensational Lone Star State homicides. Each one is presented in gory detail and several of our group never even went it. Those of us who did bought t-shirts and cowboy hats, both decorated with fake blood splatters. Mom has forbidden us to wear them in her presence.

Arizona Stops

1: The Thing?: We have this on our Earth, but it is at the other end of the state and a pretty tacky and dusty place. Actually, it’s still tacky & dusty, but the various exhibits are better and in some cases a tad less creepy. The Thing itself is different from our world and, like ours, is hard for most folks to identify. Of the 23 people in our group, 9 of us knew what it was when we saw it. Best of all, since it is 1980 here, admission is only 75 cents.

2: The Airplane House: No, not a passenger jet converted into a house, but THREE 707 jets, one stacked on top of the other two. No engines, but three planes making a surprisingly roomy house. The tour costs $2.00 a pop and the old hippies living there are very nice folks.

3: Miracle Lake: It’s actually more like a big pond, but it’s pretty cool. In 1941, some dude was blasting away hunting for uranium and he cracked open an underground aquifer. The surrounding low area filled with water in less than 24 hours and the overflow created a seasonal creek that runs just over a mile. The lake was low when we were there, but fills to overflowing in the winter and spring. No charge to see it and we bought t-shirts.

4: Giant Elvis: He’s 100 feet tall and stands straddling a little burger joint in the VERY small town of Presley. You can’t go up inside him, but the statue of Elvis in his Vegas Comeback outfit is pretty good. Makes a nice change from a Giant Jesus. Oh, and the burgers & shakes were pretty good, too.

5: The Desert Garden: This is a very nice state owned and operated botanical display. It’s a walking tour. I kitted everyone out with personal cooling units, so as not to see folks from milder temperatured states die. This place is worth seeing.

6: The Mysterious Thing: This world’s Arizona has battling Things at each end. This one is newer, cleaner, less tacky and more creepy. You pay a buck to go in, wander around looking at shit that makes you think “WTF?”, then finally come to the Other Thing, which will make you both laugh and lose faith in humans, if you still have any. The gift shop is nice and sells cold beer, which some of us partook of.

And now we are at Aunt Pearl’s house and all the humans are in twenty something bodies or they won’t look right and we NHT are just ourselves and damn if Aunt Pearl can’t cook up some great grub.

I’m signing off here, folks. Tomorrow we will be at the con around noon.

Buenas noches, amigos!

Sasha

 

Destination Sign When We Started: Altair 4
Destination Sign When We Stopped: Toontown

QM Radio Station: PolkaPunk!

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This Time, We Send The Short Guy In First

…he’ll be harder to hit

CritterCon 11

Trip Day Four (By Leon)

(Note from Daisy: This entry is short because this dumb cat kept napping and getting distracted and shit.)

Hi there! Leon here with our day four report, which will be kind of quick and dirty and a little late because I was busy doing some important stuff today. Anyway, here goes.

(Daisy: Important stuff? You took 16 naps!)

Breakfast: Great, as always. It was full on English this morning, and I hit the kippers hard.

Stop #1: The Mail Box House. Looks like a giant version of the kind of mailbox you see on country roads. Looks like a regular house inside. Oh, yeah, their mailbox looks like a house. What comedians these humans are!

(Sasha: Not the most interesting strange house.)

En route gaming: Played some Melee and Wizard with Max, Uncle Doc, Sasha, Uncle Spike, Uncle Gabriel, Goldie, my Mom (Avis) and Uncle Peter. We used a big map and had 12 wandering monsters. Uncle Peter and Max survived.

Stop #2: Another Giant Jesus. 80 feet tall, not kept up very well. Uncle Doc was not amused.

(Sadie: He looked pissed off.)

Stop #3: Packards Used Books, which for most of these guys should have said Packards Dead Tree Crack Cocaine. They spent two hours there and spent way too much money on books, music, games and who knows what else. And this while they are traveling in a Bus that has a Library with EVERY FUCKING BOOK EVER PRINTED. They’re all sick in the head.

(Daisy: Maybe you ought to try reading a book instead of sleeping on them, Cat Head.)

Stop #4: The World Famous UFO Crash Site. This place is way the fuck back in the boonies and took us 45 minutes to get to from the freeway. It has only recently been opened to the public and most of what you see is fake, but a real no shit UFO did crash here in 1950 and local folks came and took pix and stuff for about an hour before the military arrived. The government could only cover it up a bit after that, so everyone knew it had happened. And then, before they could crack open the damned thing or even load it on a truck, it just melted away. We were here for 45 hot minutes because it was 93 degrees outside.

(Sasha: It was Teollarin. Probably done as a joke.)

Lunch and en route gaming: We had lunch on the bus (hotdogs & stuff) and then played several games. I won at Dominion.

Stop #5: Another damned Giant Jesus! At least this one was very well maintained and 120 feet tall. If you guessed that Uncle Doc was pleased, you win.

En route activity: We NHT went and played in the Shoe Room. Don’t know what the humans did.

Stop #6: Biosphere 2. Unlike on our Earth, where the Biosphere 2 was a failure or a scam or whatever, this one was a big success and help scientists learn a whole lot about going to Mars and stuff. It’s a big place and only open to the public between missions. The rest of the time, it’s locked up tighter that a clam. Pretty fun to visit.

After this, we had about an hour to go to get to the Arizona border, so Uncle Doc did the shrinky thing and we made it in 32 minutes. Might have caused a couple of minor accidents, too.

(Janet: At least he asked Grace for permission first this time.)


So now, we are east of Yuma and everyone is going to bed. Uncle Doc said we need to make up some miles and time, so the Bus will drive to out first stop while we sleep.

Thanks for reading. Pet a cat today!

Leon


Destination Sign When We Started: Alderaan
Destination Sign When We Stopped: Central City

QM Radio Station: Rock & Roleplaying

Land Of 1,000 Dunces

…wait, that wasn’t the song title

CritterCon 11

Trip Day Three (By Janet)

Hello there! I’m Janet and I’m a skunk. I’ll be writing today’s trip report, but first, I’d just like to thank everyone for being so nice and accepting of me. We skunks tend to keep everyone away via our not undeserved reputation, but Doc & Grace and their canine kids have always been nothing but kind and welcoming to me. It was nice to know that their friends were the same sort of people.

(Silky: You are very easy to like, honey.)

(Roxie: She certainly is!)

Now, I tend to be less skilled at writing on my own and more skilled at organization of other folks writing, probably because my day job is working for the Greater Sacramento NHT Council as a Planning Specialist. That means that my report here will look a bit different. I hope you like it.

7:30 am: We all had another marvelous breakfast together. I really love what the kitchen staff can do with a bowl of worms, grubs and wet cat food. I’m going to have to watch my waistline on this trip.

(Roxie: Oh yes, they do know how to do cat food right.)

(Penny: Smoked salmon in my food? Yes please!)


8:30 am: We left San Clemente and drove down the coast about half an hour, then turned east on a paved road that took us up into the hills. After about 8 miles, we turned onto a gravel road that lead us to Tunnel Town.

(Sasha: As roadside attraction town names go, this one was a 5 on the WhatTheFuck-O-Meter.)

It seems that Tunnel Town is an actual small…very small…town entirely inside old tunnel made by the US military back in the 1950’s and early 60s. Then, a man made plague killed most of the population of Russia and rendered 90% of the land there dangerous to human life, so the Cold War ended just after these tunnels were completed.

(Goldie: Pity poor Donald Trump. On this Earth, he had to marry native U.S. Citizens.)

(Silky: Actually, on this Earth, Cheetoface, is doing a 40 to life stretch in the pen for a variety of crimes, but mostly for losing his temper while arguing with his dad and tossing old Fred off a 15 story building.)

(Max: I hear his name in prison is Onyer Knees Bitch.)

 

As seems to be the case in many of these roadside places, the land was bought up by a person with plenty of money and some strange ideas. Her name was Lucille Statsworth and her strangeness was of a religious nature.

(Sasha: And by that you know that she was human.)

Before you know it, she had convinced 267 other people that God was going to come soon and kill everyone living above ground, so they all moved into the tunnels and started up a town. At it’s most populous, the town had almost 900 people living in the 4 miles of 50 foot diameter tunnels. Then in 1988, Lucille died and things fell apart pretty quickly.

Today, there are still 100 people living in Tunnel Town. Most of them are older folks and all of them are very pale. We toured the town, escorted by a 70ish gentleman named Frank. It was an interesting tour and we all bought t-shirts and things before we left.

(Luke: If Dad ever goes crazy, he’ll probably open up “Roadside Souvenir Town”.)

(Daisy: “If”?)

10:00 am: We left Tunnel Town and continued down the freeway to another stop, Starbase 9. This is a 50 acre television and movie set built on land that in our world would be part of the Camp Pendleton Marine Corps Base. On this world, no Russians apparently meant much less money for defense, so the Marine Base is much smaller.

(Sadie: Like, only 100 billion dollars.)


Starbase 9 was built for the original Star Trek series. It has areas that include an alien jungle, a war ravaged city, strange alien ruins and the interiors to both alien and human homes & offices. Of course, it also includes the starbase. The sets have been used in all 4 Star Trek TV series, as well as the 9 Star Trek movies. They have also been used in many other movies and television shows.

(Daisy: It was like a beautiful dream come true!)

(Sasha: She actually drooled on some things.)

(Misty: And she was in her human body when she did it.)

Now, my best friend, Daisy, is a huge Star Trek fan. So are most of the humans and several of the critters in our group. That will explain why we paid $20 each and spent three and a half hours at this stop, including lunch. We all enjoyed it and Daisy & Max spent a whole lot of money on souvenirs and such.

(Max: By the time we left, my wallet was as empty as a treat bag in a dog park.)


2:15: This is when we got to The World Famous Monster Museum. As with many museums such as this, it is in a very large warehouse sort of structure. The entrance fee was $7.50 and most of our group were very excited to see what was inside.

What was inside were statues, and in a few cases preserved bodies, of monsters from nature, myth, legend and entertainment. We went through the Nature’s Monsters area pretty quickly, with three exceptions: the taxidermied body of one of those huge pythons we saw live yesterday (this one 38 feet long), the preserved body of a “very young” Giant Pacific Octopus (it was 24 feet long and would be 5 times that size as an adult), and the skeleton of “the last Dire Wolf” (killed in Siberia in 1670).

(Sasha: That octopus guaranteed that Mom will never go anywhere neat the ocean on this Earth.)

(Luke: Yeah, she’s twitchy tonight and we are 5 miles from the beach.)

(Penny: She’s not the only one. Screw that 125 foot long octopus stuff!)


The Myths & Legends area was actually the largest area in the building, containing statues that represented creatures from dozens of cultures. Some of them were very strange looking.

(Roxie: All told, I give Asia the nod for most bizarre monsters.)


Naturally, the Monsters from Entertainment area was a big favorite. There must been 300 monsters from literature, radio, television and the movies. Between Doc and the rest of the humans, most of them were pretty well known. That section ended at a door that read “This Way To The Big Guys”. Sure enough, on the other side of the door was an outside area with full sized models of everything from King Kong to the ants from “Them” to Godzilla. There was actual squeeing going on.

(Sadie: I’m pretty sure Uncle Doc said “Holy shit!” at least 30 times.)

(Misty: The statue of Mothra was made even more impressive by the statues of two very little women beneath it.)


We spent two and a half hours there and still had to nearly drag away Doc, Daisy, Max and some of the others. Personally, I found it a bit more worrisome that Sasha spent the whole time there taking notes.

(Sasha: It was all grist for the idea mill.)


5:30: At this point, we parked the van at the San Diego KOA campground for the night. We have since had a wonderful Mexican dinner, after which we played board and card games for three hours. We all had fun.

(Luke: Leon ran a short Warhammer minis scenario.)

(Silky: I won our Unfair game.)


Now, it’s time for me to get my beauty rest. Tomorrow, Leon will be doing the trip reporting.

Good night, everyone!

Janet

Destination Sign When We Started: Under The Sea
Destination Sign When We Stopped: Over The Rainbow

QM Radio Station: Old Time Radio Comedy

 

Module Q-2: Lair Of The Rare Were-Bear

…for 6 to 10 adventurers of level 8-10

 

CritterCon 11

Trip Day Two (By Luke)

Hi there! Luke here, with your Day Two report, and what a day it was.

We all got up around 7 this morning and had a truly legendary breakfast provided by our KitchenBots, Julia, Jacques and Alton. No matter what species you are, the kitchen staff makes sure you have plenty to choose from. Misty and I had steak & kidney pie and some scrambled eggs.

After breakfast, Dad told us we had about an hour before we got to our first stop, so while the humans sat around drinking tea or coffee and chatting, we critters hit the Slide Room. Now that the room is about 4 times larger than before, there are long stretches where you can hit 75 miles an hour! There are also double helix loop de loops that will seriously test your ability to hold down the great breakfast you just had.

(Silky: Next time, let’s wait a couple of hours.)

(Janet: Or we could just go play in the Shoe Room.)

45 minutes of sliding was enough for everybody, so we went to join the humans to find out what Dad had chosen for our first stop.

That stop turned out to be The World Famous (you saw that one coming, right?) House of Doors.

(Leon: Well, at least it wasn’t the House Of Human Heads or Petrified Turds or some other crazy stuff.)

Yes, it’s a big Victorian house up on a hill just past the top of the Grapevine (that’s what they call Interstate 5 as it comes up over the mountains into the Los Angeles basin) and it is indeed constructed completely out of doors. Front doors, garage doors, interior doors, barn doors, security doors, sliding glass doors and even doggie doors. It looks goofy from the outside, but inside, it’s a pretty ordinary house. That was kind of a letdown, but you still had to admire the ingenuity of Rex Hollister, the guy who built the place back in 1966.

(Daisy: Why don’t these nutty humans build hospitals or orphanages instead of screwy houses?)


Once we were done buying the requisite bumper stickers and such, we all piled back into the Bus and headed into that strange and bizarre land known as Greater Los Angeles. We were about 90 minutes from our next stop, so Dad put on a movie from this Earth. It was “Monster X” (1948 RKO) and starred Boris Karloff as the good guy and Lon Chaney Jr as the deranged madman who gets infected by an ancient fungus and grows into a 15 foot tall monster that ravages Los Angeles. It ran 85 minutes and wasn’t a bad movie.

(Misty: I just love old monster movies!)

In a rather rare departure from Dad’s usual strange taste in roadside attractions, our second stop was the Museum of Television Costumes in Burbank. After paying the reasonable rate of five bucks per, we all went in and saw a ton of costumes. Most were pretty ordinary suits and dresses from the late 1940s to the present, but there were plenty of costumes from sci fi and fantasy shows, along with stuff from westerns and medical shows and other genre TV. We spent about an hour there.

Next up was a stop just 10 minutes away and it was another Giant Jesus. However, this Giant Jesus was strictly from Hollywood because he was all dressed up like some studio PR weasel. White suit, big smile, sunglasses and well styled hair, he could not have been more SoCal unless he had a surfboard.

(Silky: I thought Daddy would start crying when he saw it.)


The statue is 100 feet tall and very well built. An elevator can take 10 people up into the head to get a really great view of Griffith Park. Dad was very impressed and left a 20 buck donation on the way out. He even bought a little dashboard version of that Jesus and put it on the dashboard next to Mr. Spock and the 3rd Doctor.

(Max: That is high praise from Mister C.)

We didn’t drive too far when Dad stopped at Red and Ed’s BBQ Burger Joint. We got in just before the lunch rush and had some great burgers, fries and shakes.

(Goldie: Say what you will about humans, but dang, can they cook up great food!)

(Sasha: Dude, wait until we hit a Texas BBQ joint.)

As we were leaving, I’m pretty sure we boggled several people who saw 23 humans (all of us NHT were in human bodies) climb into a small ice cream truck.

(Penny: One lady dropped her milkshake.)

Our next stop was all the way out in Long Beach and since it was almost one o’clock, we needed to get out there ASAP. As usual, the combined minds of Dad, Sasha and our quantum mechanic, Joe, came up with the answer.

By now, most of you have at least seen the trailer for “Ant Man and The Wasp”, so you probably have an idea what happened next. Dad pulled a stickshift looking lever back and suddenly, the Bus was the size of a shoe box and rocketing along at 90 miles an hour. Thankfully, Mom did not find this out until we got to our destination. When she did find out the answer to “how did we get here so fast?” she was not amused.

(Sadie: “Not amused” is British level understatement.)

(Sasha: Yeah, she ripped us new asses.)


Our Long Beach destination was a real mind blower: Uncle Ferdy’s Trained Squirrel Review! Yes, folks, this Earth has an Uncle Ferdy and the show is even better than the one in our world. We all paid ten bucks and watched some really talented squirrels, as well as some chipmunks, prairie dogs and groundhogs, do their thing. There was acrobatics, dancing and all sorts of comedy. It was a great show and there were no critter related incidents because we were all in human bodies and had instinct suppressors turned on.

(Daisy: Even with suppressors on, some of us were twitching.)

(Leon: I may have a permanent facial tic.)


The show was an hour long and apparently only takes place Monday-Saturday, three times a day. When it was all over, several of us got Uncle Ferdy’s autograph.

We got back on the road a bit after 3 and headed off to our last stop, The World Famous Serpent Park near Laguna Beach. It was almost 4 when we got there and, oddly enough, not everyone wanted to go into a huge building full of snakes. Leon, Penny, Roxie, Silky (who died from snakebite once), Mom, Max and Auntie Mary, Auntie Holly and Misty all stayed on the bus. The rest of us ponied up our $7.50 and went into a nightmare.

(Leon: No goddamn way was I going in there!)

(Penny: Nope, nope, nope!)

(Max: Prey animal here, yo. Fuck them snakes!)


Well, a nightmare for some of us. I mean, folks, there were a whole lot of snakes in there, including a species of python we don’t have on our Earth, which is damned good because it was 33 feet long!

(Sasha: HA! I’ve created bigger snakes than that!)

(Daisy: You have? What the hell is wrong with you?)

(Sasha: Was the term “mad scientist” never fully explained to you?)

I nearly pooped myself when I saw it. The pit full of cobras didn’t help anybody’s nerves, either. Ditto the pit full of rattlesnakes or the glass walled hallway that let you walk under a pond containing at least 4 big anacondas. We were in there for an hour and everyone, even Dad, was glad when we left.

(Goldie: I will probably piss myself the next time I see a garden hose out of the corner of my eye.)


After leaving Snake Nightmare Land, we drove on down to San Clemente where we parked the Bus, now looking like an old beater Chevy Nova. Dinner tonight was Italian and as delicious as it always is. We just finished a couple of hours of boardgames and now everyone is drinking and chatting or heading to the Shoe Room.

More reportage from somebody else tomorrow.

Here’s looking at you, kid.

Luke


Destination Sign When We Started: The Land Of The Giants
Destination Sign When We Stopped: Baskerville Hall

QM Radio Station: Girl Group Radio

We Have Love Biscuits!

…made with extra love, seasoned with lust

 

CritterCon 11

Trip Day One (by Daisy)

Hi, folks! Daisy here with our Day One trip report.

Daddy woke us all up at 6 this morning and Jeeves served up some great BREAKFASSSTTT FOOORRR DOGGGSSS! And cats, rabbits and skunks. We all chowed down and then found comfy spots for a little nap.

(Silky: In a living room with never fewer than six long sofas, it’s easy to find a comfy spot.)

(Goldie: This bus is insane, but also the most dog friendly place I’ve ever seen.)


The humans got up about 6:30, just as we were leaving South Sacramento headed toward Elk Grove. It’s pretty strange to look out the window and see all the houses spaced so far apart, but it’s also kind of nice. Businesses and stuff all seem to be in large shopping centers or malls. Same goes for any sort of industrial stuff.

Anyway, our first stop of the day was actually just south of Elk Grove and a few miles off the highway. It was the World Famous (because humans just love to use that term) Dice Museum. If you think for half a second that Daddy, Uncle Spike, Uncle Peter, Uncle Brian and Uncle Gabriel were gonna pass this up, you’re nuts. Fortunately, it opens at 7:00 in the morning for some reason, otherwise they might have broken into it.

(Sasha: Oh, I don’t think anybody but Daddy would have actually broken in.)

(Sadie: True. The others would have just waited for him to come open the door.)

(Roxie: Humans are strange animals.)

Now, I’m a gamer and own a few hundred dice, but this place was just crazy. The two dudes that own it, Rich and Tony, have 275,000 dice! Yes, you read that right, over a quarter million dice. The museum is in an old warehouse and has three levels. There are all sorts of plaques and stuff telling the history of dice and dice games and stuff. It was hella interesting and we spent two hours there. I think the only reason we left is because Mom and Auntie Mary started tapping their feet and folding their arms and giving Daddy & Uncle Spike the stink eye. Before we left, we bought t-shirts and bumper stickers and fridge magnets and yes, dice. Heroin got nothing on dice addiction.

(Misty: I must remember that foot tapping thing when Luke gets all absorbed in chatting up another fan of old musicals.)

Daddy put the Bus on autopilot and we all lounged around the living room talking about dice and games and how cool it was that everything was at 1980 prices.

(Leon: Cat food is like, less than half the price it is in 2018!)


About 45 minutes later, just south of Stockton, we stopped at our next roadside attraction, a Giant Jesus. Those of you who have read previous con reports know that Daddy loves checking out giant sized Son of God statues, especially if you can go up inside them. Auntie Mary is nearly as bad.

(Sasha: It’s some mental illness.)

(Luke: Says the dog who has never met a classic car show she didn’t stop at.)

(Silky: Or a dogpunk band whose album/cassette/cd she didn’t buy.)

(Sasha: You two suck.)


So I need to explain that on this Earth, in this United States, religion is not nearly as popular as it is on our world. Also, they tax churches if they make over a certain amount. For some reason, the tax code taxes “religious statues and historical monuments” at a much lower rate, so the churches put up these bigass statues or they try to get things and places recognized as historical monuments. All of them ask for donations for “upkeep” because they cannot charge for admission. And, of course, they have gift shops.

(Leon: Gift shop owners weep with joy when they see Uncle Doc coming.)

So this particular Jesus is about 70 feet tall and in excellent repair. He’s pretty realistic looking, too. Only 4 humans at a time can stand in his head, but only Daddy & Auntie Mary went up. The rest of us actually spent most of our time looking at a herd of cows that some cowboys were driving across the highway. When the two of them came down, they agreed that it was a good Giant Jesus, but not a great one.

(Max: Probably a good thing that Mr. C has no grandkids, or the poor little tykes would have to listen to him tell endless stories about Giant Jesus statues.)

When we got back on the Bus, those of us who are NHT went to the Game Room to play assorted games. The humans spent the next half hour chatting.

(Janet: I really enjoyed playing Dixit.)

(Penny: Yes, that was fun. So was Kill Doctor Lucky.)


Our third stop, at around 11:00, was in Modesto at the Old Toy Museum. Apparently, it’s not World Famous. The humans all really loved this place, with the words “I used to have this!” being repeated dozens of times. There are a whole lot of toys at that place, so if you are a human and ever get over to Earth 1-G, you ought to check it out. Personally, aside from the Star Trek stuff, I was not impressed. No rubber bones, no squeaky toys, not even a tennis ball!

(Silky: I opted to take a nap instead.)

After spending 90 minutes looking at old toys, everybody was hungry. We went to a place called Mama Marie’s Pizza and damn was that some excellent chow! We all got on the Bus almost an hour later with full bellies. Napping ensued.

(Leon: We may have answered the question “Can you eat too much pizza”.)


We actually got to our next stop an hour later, but Daddy let everyone sleep for another half hour before waking us up to see World Famous Skeleton Town in Chowchilla. Yes, it is exactly as the name says, an Old West town populated by skeletons posed in ordinary ways. Skeletons at the saloon, skeletons at the church, skeletons at the general store and jail and livery stable ans school and walking on the street! Human skeletons, horse skeletons, cow skeletons, dog, cat and bird skeletons. Skeletons of all sizes.

(Misty: I am now totally convinced that The Doctor possesses the mad ability to find the strangest roadside attractions.)

(Sasha: Oh, girlfriend, that one was nothing. The Serial Killer Museum and that goddamn Zombie Toontown or whatever they called it, were WAY creepier.)

(Sasha: Also, stop calling him “The Doctor”. You just feed his ego.)

(Misty: Sorry mate, but I’m an English bitch and when I meet an eccentric bloke named Doc who owns a TARDIS, he’s The Doctor to me.)


Now, dear reader, nobody likes a bone better than me, but this place was a fuckin’ creepfest! Okay, not as bad as the serial killer museum we once visited, but not far behind. Just to add to the creepiness, the family that runs the place is cheery and wholesome and now that I think of it, that makes them creepy, too. We spent 30 minutes there and I’ll probably have nightmares tonight.

(Goldie: I had a nightmare that bones wanted to eat me!)

After Creepfest 1980, we drove almost straight through to Bakersfield. I say almost because we stopped to check out another Giant Jesus, but it was only 25 feet tall and you couldn’t go inside it and it was kind of run down. Daddy was pretty disappointed.

(Luke: The rest of us, not so much.)


Right now we are all on the Bus, which looks like a Ford Econoline van and is parked in a Motel 6 parking lot. The kitchen bots are cooking up a feast and then we are all going to watch some local tv and old movies. Tomorrow, we resume our journey.

Live long and prosper,

Daisy

Destination Sign When We Started: The Mountains of Madness
Destination Sign When We Stopped: Cucamonga

Doc Tempest VS The Unspeakable Horror

…from the August, 1951 issue

 

CritterCon 11

Trip Day One, Intro (July 20th)

Greetings, Gentle Readers! Once again it’s time for our annual trip to the greatest imaginary gaming con ever, CritterCon 11. The local time is 5:00 am and I have just finished a hearty bowl of Cap’n Crunch and am about to down a mug of tea so powerful, I’ve nicknamed it Thanos. After that, around 5:30, we will depart lovely Casa Cross and do a dimensional sidestep to…

…lovely Casa Cross! On Earth 1-G. In the year 1980.

A Momentary Divergence: This version of our house is considerably different than the one on our Earth. For one thing, it sets on 4 acres of land, most of which is gardens, orchards and small paddocks for goats, pigs and poultry. In fact, all of the homes in this area are on at least 2 acres, because the state of California passed a bill in 1961 that was made to preserve farmland and natural habitats. I wish we could do that on Earth Prime.

Anyway, the Doc and Grace living here are much younger than us (26 and 24) and have 4 kids (two born to them and two adopted) with number 5 on the way. Obviously, they are way braver than we are. Like all sensible diurnal creatures, they, the kids, the dogs (4) and cats (2) are all asleep at this hour and thus will not mind us pulling out of their driveway. And the neighbors won’t see us, so all is good.

We Return To Our Story: Our route this year takes us down Interstate 99 to Los Angeles, then to San Diego, then across SoCal on I-8 until we turn toward I-10, at which point it’s straight on toward Critter City, Texas.

We are taking this Alternate Earth route mostly because after 10 years of traveling in our world, including wildly spread out routes and time travel to various decades, we’ve kind of gotten bored with the same old same old. I’d also like to point out that this was Grace’s idea.

And here, labeled for you newbies, we have our record sized crew for this year, including…

Me
Grace Cross (my wife)

Silky Cross (a dog)

Luke Cross (a dog)

Sasha Cross (a dog)

Daisy Cross (a dog)

Max Bunnington (a rabbit)

Misty Blake (a dog)

Janet Woods (a skunk)

Avis Crane (a human, the original version again and an old friend)

Leon Crane (a cat)

Ginie Murphy (human, a friend)

Roxy Murphy (a cat)

Spike Y Jones (human, another old friend)

Mary Jones (human, wife of Spike)

Gabriel Gentile (human, friend and voice actor)

Brian Misiaszek (human, old friend and actual doctor)

Caroline King (human, wife of Brian, also a doctor)

Sadie Misiaszek (a dog)

Peter Hildreth (human, old friend)

Holly Hildreth (human, Peter’s wife)
Goldie Hildreth (a dog)

Penny Hildreth (a cat)


An Important Note: Because I am getting lazy in my old age, I am letting the above mentioned critters actually do the bulk of this trip/con report. I’m sure we all look forward to their commentary.

And now, I must drink my tea before it snaps it’s fingers and half the population of the universe disappears.

Destination Sign: Pork Chop Hill
QM Radio Station: The Best of Surf Music (turned way down low and only playing in the Driver’s Seat area)

Thuggish Prawns Humiliated My Anemone

…so I ate the little bastards

The Doclopedia #1,378

Amazing Ordinary Stuff: Candles

Yes, folks, these are the direct opposite of can’tdles, those great teaching devices we use on pets, children and really stupid adults. The difference is, if you light a candle for a pet or human, it will magically reinforce the thing you want them to do, like eating their vegetables or cleaning their room or bringing the thrown ball back to you or voting for somebody other than a fucking fascist. You can buy these at 3 for $10.00 in most magic shops.

Hey, folks, become a Patron of this blog and you can get sweet compiled Doclopedia posts in the popular PDF format! You can get in on this for as little as one dollar a month!

Support this blog on Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/DocCross

Tequila Sunrise Pancakes

…not as strange as you think

 

The Doclopedia #1,377

When Harry Met…: Silky

The old basset hound looked at the three teenagers and asked “Are you guys ready?”

Harry, Ron & Hermione all answered yes. Silky had been training them hard for a month and they were not the same 15 year olds they had once been. They were soldiers now, trained for one mission and one mission only. Once it was over, they could go back to Hogwarts and be kids again. Or try to be.

Silky, a 12 year old basset hound who had seemed rather sweet when they first met her, had gotten much tougher once training had started. She had worked them long hard hours, then worked them some more. Each of them knew exactly what to do and had the weapons to do it. Where once they had felt fear, now they only felt grim determination.

If everything went well tonight, they would change history.

The four of them were standing on a rooftop about three blocks from what looked like a boarded up fish & chips shop. Inside, thanks to magic, it was a huge hall in which Lord Voldemort would address over 200 Death Eaters. After his speech, they would all leave and start his reign of terror.

Or not. Silky was betting on that.

She raised herself up with her four tentacles and looked at the rooftops around the fish & chips shop. She saw very faint red lights 10 of them, indicating that Dumbledore and his Order of the Phoenix were ready to do their part.

She lowered herself back onto her feet and picked up her weapons. It had been a lot of decades since she had done anything like this, but old skills never die, even when you do. Nine times so far.

“Sweetie, open us a window”, she said to a black Chevrolet Corvette parked a few feet away. A moment later a 10 foot wide 7 foot tall scene appeared in front of them.

“Bloody hell”, said Ron, “I still can’t believe you have a TARDIS.”

Silky chuckled. “She prefers to be called a bus, kid.”

The scene they were watching showed a long hall filled with mask wearing Death Eaters. At one end of the hall, Voldemort sat on a high throne, a smile on his face. He got up and walked a few paces toward the crowd, which went completely silent as he began to speak.

“Okay, it’s showtime. Weapons ready. Step through on my word. You know the rest. Remember, these motherfuckers are nothing but magical Nazis. Okay, Sweetie, make it a door”

Voldemort had just enough time to notice a slight cold draft had occurred when four teenagers dressed in army fatigues and a dog stepped out of nowhere and shot him in the legs. As he felt the searing pain and began his fall, he tried to cast a curse at them, but his power had left him.

From the floor, he watched as the humans and dog, all of whom held machine guns in their arms and tentacles, began mowing down his followers. How could they have gotten in here? This place was the most heavily protected place in the wizarding world. Not even Albus Dumbledore could hope to get in.

Crawling forward, he tried to grab the girl by the ankle. He got a bullet through his hand for his troubles. Screaming in pain he saw several Death Eaters apparate out, only to suddenly reappear and get shot dead. These people were taking no prisoners.

In just under 4 minutes, all of his followers were dead. He was bleeding badly and would not last much longer. The dog approached him.

Who are you?” The fear in his voice made it quaver as it had never done before.

The dog looked at him. “I’m somebody who fought the real Hitler, you snakefaced Nazi son of a bitch. These are kids who would have suffered greatly in a world with you in it. Now that won’t happen.”

She turned to the kids. “You three did good. Now is when I tell you that you aren’t going back to your own time. See, when this piece of shit dies, you three will disappear. Time will be reset and you’ll grow up in a world that was Voldemort free. Harry will have his parents and maybe some siblings. You’ll all meet at Hogwarts and by the time you’re 15, your biggest worries will be acne and dealing with the opposite sex. The wizards outside will come in here and clean up this mess. Tomorrow the biggest news in the Daily Prophet will be the quidditch scores.”

They all started to speak, but she held up a tentacle.

“No more questions, no goodbyes. No memories of this, either. It was an honor and a privilege, guys.”

With that said, she shot the Dark Lord Voldemort twice in the head with the magic draining rounds that she had bought on another Earth. The three teens vanished.

Silky looked around at all the dead bodies. This was now a room full of good magical Nazis. She could feel the Rejuvenox she had been injected with wearing off. She was going to be a sore old bitch for a day or two.

The Corvette appeared next to her and she got inside. The living room was full of sofas and she climbed onto a very soft one.

“Sweetie, let’s go home”, she said, just before she fell asleep.

The Exceptionally Witty, Yet Also Quite Profound, Story of Mostly Purple Patty And The Boy Who Dressed Like A Walrus

…co-starring her new best pall, Russ Wall.

The Doclopedia #1,376

When Harry Met…: Luke

The Dark Lord was as close to being giddy with happiness as he was ever likely to get. His enemies were dying nearly every day and his forces were getting bolder. True, he had lost several Death Eaters, like that simpering fool Lucius and the werewolf and others, but they were a small price to pay for such success. Tonight, the final blow would be struck and then the Wizarding populace of the U.K. would serve him or die. The muggles, of course, would just die. And to think he owed much of this rapid success to two loyal supporters from the United States. Two whose hatred of muggles rivaled his own.

Lorcan and Mistria Cross first came to his notice after Bellatrix witnessed them killing an entire family of muggles with the Killing Curse. Six people dead and they had laughed and joked about it. In a rare moment of lucidity, she had thought to approach them. Did they know of her Lord? Did they know of the Death Eaters? Why, yes they did and they had traveled from America to join up!

And so they did, after being thoroughly questioned and examined the Dark Lord’s most trusted follower, Severus Snape. Oh, the things they admitted to while under the influence of Veritaserum! Butchery of muggles and mudbloods that shocked some of his followers, but made him smile. Yes, these two mad dog killers would be his perfect weapon.

For two months they slaughtered their way across England, Scotland & Wales. They outdid all of the other Death Eaters combined, sometimes wiping every trace of a mudblood out of existence. Indeed, he had to actually rein them in a few times when their zeal began to attract too much attention. But tonight, their full fury would be unleashed on the perfect target: Hogwarts. When hundreds of their children were dead, along with the staff of the school, the Wizarding populace would be so demoralized that his ascent as lord over them would be easy.

But first, the Dark Lord had to take care of the Potters and their son. Voldemort was no fool when it came to prophecies, so it was best to nip this one in the bud. He thought all of this as he walked up the steps to the Potter home, wand ready to blast open the door.

But the door was already ajar. Had that weak coward Pettigrew warned them after all? His blood boiled at the thought and he rushed into the house, wand at the ready.

He stopped in his tracks when he saw the three Potters dead on the floor and himself standing over them.

The other Voldemort laughed and said, “Hello, me. I’ve come from the future to save our life.”

Time travel? It was, of course, possible, but fraught with far too much risk for him to ever consider. But there he was. Or was he.

Voldemore lifted his wand and said, “Prove that you are truly me! Do it now!”

Again, the other Dark Lord laughed. “Oh, yes, yes. I knew this was coming, of course.” He then began relating how each and every horcrux had been made. By the time he was done, the Present Dark Lord had lowered his wand and was staring at him in amazement.

“But time travel is so dangerous. Why risk it?”

Future Dark Lord waved his hand at the Potters and said, “Because Pettigrew warned them and you would have been killed the moment you set foot in this room. Well, of course, not killed, but you would have lost 20 years of hard work and been reborn into a wizarding world that would…or did…prove much harder to conquer. I made time travel research a priority just so I would not spend two decades in limbo.”

The Dark Lord saw the wisdom in that, but realized something, too.

Won’t this create a paradox?”

The other Dark Lord smiled. “Well, it would if it weren’t total bullshit.”

And then the real Voldemort was hit with hexes from a dozen different wands as all of his formerly dead Death Eaters and some of the living ones appeared in the room. He hit the floor, agonizing under multiple Cruciatis curses. He barely noticed when his wand was taken and several Aurors apparated into the now crowded room. He did notice when the Potters got up off the floor, but only for an instant. Then things went black.

Hours had passed by the time he woke up. He was shackled to a chair by both cold iron chains and very powerful magic. A few feet away from him was a small table containing all of his horcruxes. On the other side of that table stood Lorcan and Mistria Cross, surrounded by Aurors, the Minister of Magic, the Potters and Albus Dumbledore.

Voldemort was equally filled with rage and fear, but rage wone out and he screamed “HOW?” at Lorcan.

Lorcan walked around the table and bent over so his face was inches from the Dark Lord’s.

“Acting, Tom. World class acting. Well, that and some very high tech doodads, but mostly acting. As my sister might say, you were totally scammed.”

Mistria walked up to stand beside her husband. She was actually chuckling at him. She was laughing at him!

Yes, Tom, we had everything planned out like a high class con job…”

Or a well written play”, Lorcan interjected.

“…or a play. We knew exactly where that wack job Bellatrix was going to be, so we made it look like we stunned those muggles. Then we gassed her so she would become very suggestible. After that, we just played the parts that you most needed.”

“All the while, we were also conferring with the Ministry and the good Headmaster here.” Lorcan gestured at the others as he spoke. “We used your own overconfidence against you. Well, that and the fact that you wizarding folks are pretty much blind to ultra technology.”

With that, both Lorcan and Mistria reached up and detached their faces from the fronts of their heads. They were machines!

Robots”, said Voldemort.

“Androids, actually.” Mistria’s eye winked at him as she reattached her face. “You see, Tom, you had spells set up to warn you against muggles, enemy wizards, magical creatures, spells, even your own followers. But you never thought to do up a warning spell for late 22nd century technology. Getting next to you was easy peasy.”

“As was keeping you gobsmacked long enough for your “dead” followers, whom you no longer felt the need to be warned about, to just walk in the door behind you.” Lorcan’s smug smile drove Voldemort into a fit of rage that took a couple of minutes to subside.

Once again, Lorcan got face to face. “So here’s the plan, Tommy Boy. We are going to put all of your horcruxes into a box and take them to a whole other reality where there is zero magic. In fact, it’s an Earth that has about six months left before the sun goes nova. That’ll take care of them. As for you, you ugly reptilian asshole, we are going to take you to another Earth with no magic. You’ll be a muggle there. Now, there won’t be any humans there, but there will be plenty of dinosaurs. I hope you can run fast.”

The former Dark Lord was about to say something when Mistria slapped a metallic gag over his mouth. He felt the chair begin to float. It followed the group outside. There was a small brightly colored bus waiting. The back of the bus opened, revealing a cargo area too large for the bus to contain. Once he and the chair were inside, the doors shut.

Luke and Misty said goodbye to their friends and headed for the Bus, where Jeeves, the always competent SmartBot had just loaded the Box O’ Horcruxes.

“So,” Luke asked as they walked, “Oscar worthy performances or what?”

Misty took his arm. “Olivier and Streep could not touch us, love.”