Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Behind the Curtain of the Selection Committee

We here at Transformer Generation Dad strive for transparency or at least translucency.  To be honest, we rarely have to strive for it at all.  It seems to come naturally.  My wife tells me all the time how easy it is to figure out exactly what I'm thinking.

Still, with the 2012 Geek Tournament bracket now posted, there is bound to be controversy over the seedings.  Thus, in an unprecedented, behind the scenes look, we have decided to provide our readers with an opportunity to take a glimpse into the minds of myself and the selection committee and reveal some of the comments we exchanged regarding the seeding of this year's contestants.

Be forewarned, this is meant only to be a glimpse into our minds.  Stare too long and you may go blind...

Monday, February 27, 2012

2012 Geek Tournament Official Details

This year’s Geek Tournament has undergone a drastic overhaul since last year’s inaugural event.  Instead of a single winner being declared amongst numerous randomly paired items, this year we will have four winners, one from each of the following categories:
  • Universe
  • Ship
  • Captain
  • Crew

-       There are a total of 16 contestants, each with an entrant competing for the title in the aforementioned categories (a master list for anyone without a PhD in Science Fiction is available here).  This shall result in a total of four rounds of voting during which you, our loyal reader, will help determine the outcome of each matchup.

Voting is set to begin March 4th and each round will last one week.  The updated matchups for each round will be posted here on Sundays until the ultimate winners are determined.

Speaking of ultimate winners, Cobra Electronics has graciously agreed to supply one lucky contestant with a Cobra iRadar system for use with their iPhone or Android phone (depending on which company to which you have chosen to pledge your allegiance).  That means, like last year, I will be accepting brackets for those of you bold enough to attempt to predict whom the winners might be.  Unlike last year, you will get something infinitely cooler than a crappy t-shirt for your troubles.  (Prize recipients are limited to those in the Continental United States)

Brackets are now available in Microsoft Excel and PDF format.  Once you have completed your bracket, submissions will be accepted in just about any imaginable manner.  Ideally, you should email it to madcap1417@gmail.com, but you could also leave a detailed list in the comment section of one of my blog posts, send TGD a Facebook inbox message or communicate in some other way I have not had the foresight to suggest here.  Basically, if I get it and can read it, it will count as an entry.  The entry deadline is Sunday, March 4th 2012 at 11:59 PM CST.

Of course, this now burdens me with the responsibility of explaining how the brackets will be scored.  Each correctly placed bracket slot from the first round of voting will receive two points, the second round four points, the third round six points and the correct identification of each final bracket champion will result in ten points resulting in a possible one hundred and sixteen points.  In the event of a tie, the winner shall be determined by the total number of correct entries regardless of round.  In the event that this also results in a tie, the winner’s submitted screen names will be placed in alphabetical order a coin flipped to determine whether to begin from A (heads) or Z (tails) and a D20 then rolled in order to decide how far from said starting letter to begin.  Is that part confusing?  Good, it is meant to be.

No doubt, the bracket seedings will cause some disagreement.  By disagreement, I mean rage.  More than likely, I will receive some very angry emails and comments.  While I welcome such "constructive" feedback, in a more than likely futile attempt to quell any uprising, later this week I plan to give you an unprecedented glimpse into the minds of the selection committee and myself by sharing with you some of the comments passed back and forth while ranking the contestants.  I hope you might laugh at them as much as I did.

With business now handled, it is time to let the festivities begin.  Submit your bracket for a chance to win a Cobra iRadar (and guaranteed fun) today!

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Almost There...

Ladies and gentlemen, after some tough deliberation by myself and the selection committee, the seeding of the contestants in this year's Geek Tournament is nearly complete.  Within the next day or two, the bracket should be completed and posted and your chance to win a Cobra iRadar will become available.  In addition, I plan to post an explanation for the seeding decisions so that before I get a nasty email, you can at least read where we were coming from when we dissed your favorite obsession.

I just wanted to alert you all to this and create the sort of swirling vortex of anticipation to which the Geek Tournament could not possibly live up.  So tell everyone you know that the 2012 Transformer Generation Dad Geek Tournament is about to begin.  Then prepare to compete for one hell of a grand prize.

Own It, Son

I try to avoid typecasting my sons over little things they do.  It is sometimes easy to over-magnify something you notice and try to predict their personality based upon it.

When I notice I’m doing this, I remind myself that my mother was convinced I had a future as an architect due to my Lego building skills.  In high school she then believed I would become a writer.  Alas, I am now neither.  Not professionally, anyway.  I do write here regularly to mixed reviews and there is an intricately detailed blueprint for a really awesome tree house out in my garage that I would start on if only I had the time...and a boom crane.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Happy Belated Birthday, TGD

On February 20th, this blog marked its second anniversary.  I've been so caught up in sorting and seeding this year's Geek Tournament contestants that I completely neglected to recognize this momentous achievement.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Yo, Joe My A--! TGD Joins Cobra!

Faithful Transformer Generation Dad readers, I have some exciting news.  Just a short time before the 2012 Geek Tournament is set to kick off, we have acquired a super awesome prize from a sponsor who is obviously so confident in the awesomeness of their product that they are willing to associate with such a meager blog.  That sponsor is...

Cobra Electronics!

The Road Not Taken May Not Be on Your Map Anymore

Human beings are prone to self-doubt.  We question our choices at nearly ever step along our life’s journey.

This doesn’t change when you become a parent.  You just experience more guilt when that doubt about your lifestyle creeps up in the back of your mind and forces you to acknowledge it.

Everything’s going along just fine, you are caught up with the bills, the cars are functioning properly and the kids are doing well in school.  You feel like you have everything under control.

Monday, February 20, 2012

What a Waste?

Time gets away from people.

You talk too long to an old friend on the phone.  You get caught up reading an extra chapter or eight of the book you're really into.  You check the status updates of each and every Facebook friend.  You sort through your email inbox and finally clear out those junk messages, including the several hundred promoting male enhancement (which I swear I never signed up to learn anything about).

Regardless of which activity grabs you by the brain and makes you forget the rest of the world around you exists, it happens to all of us.  The true value of the time spent in whatever vortex of distraction happened to suck you in lies with how you feel about it afterward.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

I Watched Phantom Menace Again...Willingly

So my family and I just returned home from seeing The Phantom Menace in 3D at the theater.  I wasn’t sure how I would feel about seeing the film that robbed me of my innocence on the big screen again.  The results were mixed.

Friday, February 17, 2012

How Cleaning House Led Me to Rediscover My Manhood

Everyone has a place in their home where all the crap goes.  In our home that place is our office.  It is technically a third bedroom that we have filled with desks, computers and bookcases.  Thanks to the fact that we have two boys and bunk beds, we can retreat there from the noise of the average day and try to be productive doing things like paying bills, writing a blog and spending way too much time on Facebook.  At least we can do so when the crap hasn't piled up.

To clarify, this is metaphorical crap I am talking about.  Certainly, we have a room (two of them in fact) where the literal crap goes.  Some crap technically ends up in the yard, but that is 99% of the time at the hands of our dog ("hands" here is also used metaphorically in that dogs have paws and hopefully neither hands nor paws are ever involved in said crap's placement...ew).

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Third person Thursday: Man With a Knife

The man just stared down for awhile before he produced a knife.  It had been ready at his side from the time he had first decided he would actually commit to doing this.  Now the time had come to employ it.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Could There Be a Saint Lego?

Over the last few weeks, I have become even more keenly aware that Lego is the ultimate good.  And if it isn't THE ultimate, then it's damn near close.  Need convincing?

The Ret(o)urn(nament) of the Geek

In March of 2011, Transformer Generation Dad launched its first annual Geek Tournament, pitting random geeky things against one another in order to deem one most worthy of geek love.  The contest spanned the month of March and was met with much fanfare as Lego emerged as supreme champion of geekdom.

Yet, for as much celebration as the tournament generated, there was maybe as much (if not more) criticism over its arbitrary nature.  Such is the fickleness of geeks.  They always try to figure out how things could be better and consider it their duty to let you know about it.

Personally, it's one of the things I love most about geeks and about being one myself.  Thus, I had to take some of the criticism to heart and this year's tournament is going to have a completely different format that I think will both tantalize and enrage readers.  I can't wait to reveal it to you all.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Some Lovely Weekly Features

With Valentine’s Day sneaking up on all of us, the weekly features have a hint of love injected into them (which doesn’t sound right).  The top five list for this week is geeky ways to say, “I love you.”

5. “You are the Leia to my Han.”

4. “I wouldn’t even think of Force-choking you to near death.”

3. “As you wish.”

2. “I will never reveal that you are really an android.”

1. “jlH muSHa’ SoH” (yes, that’s Klingon)

Saturday, February 11, 2012


Parents tend to try and provide their children with a routine.  Routine helps establish priorities.  Homework comes before video games.  Vegetables get eaten before dessert.  Teeth get brushed before bed.  You must watch Episode IV before Episode I.  How can you have your pudding if you don’t eat your meat?

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Twelve Years Later...

Time heals all wounds, they say.

Of course, if the wound cuts deep enough, severs a femoral artery and proves fatal, time can’t do much about it.  Nor can it heal a severe bludgeoning that melds skull fragment with brain matter and results in a closed casket for its victim.

These are the macabre thoughts that run through my mind this week as the release of The Phantom Menace in 3D approaches.  I find myself wondering how catastrophic the damage done to the image of the beloved Star Wars franchise by the terrible first prequel really was.  Has twelve years been enough for Star Wars purists to accept Episode I into the ranks of watchable films or has the corpse of their fandom been left to decompose in a roadside ditch so many years ago, hastily covered by some lawn clippings just to buy them some time to make it into the next state?

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

At Last the New Weekly Features Will Reveal Themselves

A long awaited update to our weekly features is finally upon us.  This week, with the imminent release of The Phantom Menace in 3D, my thoughts will no doubt continually drift to the film in the Star Wars saga that was by far the most damaging to the death grip with which I held on to my childhood idealism.  Thus, our weekly features are chock even more full of Star Wars references than they usually are.

To start it off, this week’s top five list consists of the changes we’ve “heard” were going to be made to The Phantom Menace as it is rereleased in theaters:

Saturday, February 4, 2012

No Moral High Ground to Stand on With This Pick...Or Is There?

Well, the Transformer Generation Dad Moral High Ground Picks for this season's NFL PLayoffs have not gone so well.  Certainly, the two most evil teams (the Baltimore Ravens by their association with a murderer and the Green Bay Packers by their association with the opposite of the Bears) were dispatched.  However, I cannot say that I can assuredly rest my high and mighty laurels upon the likes of either team left to represent their respective conference in the championship game.

But I'll sure as hell try.

By the Way, I Sold Out

What better time than the eve of the Super Bowl to discus the commercialization of every aspect of daily life?  Well, maybe during the Super Bowl would be a powerful time to have such a discussion, but nobody would really be listening because they would all be watching the Super Bowl and tweeting about how clever the last Doritos commercial was.

If you look carefully, you may notice something new on this blog.  I have been known to make sudden, drastic changes.  I usually make a big deal about the fact that a change was made only to change it back to the way it used to be a few weeks later without admitting I was wrong.  But this particular addition is here to stay (for now at least).

Friday, February 3, 2012

Life is a Journey...Down a Spiral Staircase...After Slipping on a Banana Peel

My last post described the events of a day that sucked.  Having the support of my family around me helped me keep my sanity, but they couldn't put any more hours in the day despite my begging them to do so.  Thus, the days that have passed from that to this have left me with little opportunity to sleep properly, much less write any blog posts.

The past week of my life has been a sleep deprived haze of work, neglected promises, pulling uniform pants from the dirty laundry pile and trying to make them look presentable for one more day, apologizing to my kids for not telling their mother about the thing they needed for school the next morning and swearing that I just closed my eyes thirty seconds ago when the alarm was suddenly going off.

Sometimes, life runs away on you.  Then again, sometimes it runs away from you.  Then even further again, sometimes it runs away with you tucked under its arm like a screaming football of a toddler crying to get just that one toy because life never lets you get anything you want and you hate it, you hate it, YOU HATE IT!