A quick lesson in things that you can, and can't buy in America. For the most part, things you are, and are not allowed to buy in The U.S. are pretty self-explanatory, and even make good sense. I can't buy a kidney. Or a child. That much is pretty obvious. But what about the other things that don't make all that much sense? I have found a few items that I would LIKE to buy, but can't because somebody somewhere has deemed them too dangerous. So I made a list, and compared that to a list of things that are 1000x times MORE dangerous, yet I can buy no problem. Feel free to add your own ideas. CAN'T: LAWN DARTS! Or "Jarts"
Back in the 70's and 80's toys were made of an extremely durable material called "metal". This not only helped to make your toys last longer, but also made them a LOT more fun to throw at other kids. Somebody had the idea to take a sharpened hunk of metal, attached some fins to them, and sent those sumbitches airborne. What could go wrong?! It's not like kids are going to lob those bad boys like SCUDs into a neighbor’s yard or anything right? Well, actually yeah. That's exactly what we did. My cousins had a set, and for us they were more like "fence darts".
That fence was a commie, man. In the 80's we fought commies. And ninjas.
According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, there were over 6000 serious injuries reported and one confirmed death, of which 81% were under the age of 15. So yeah, let's not make those any more. Good call. But here’s the weird part. Not only are they illegal to sell. And illegal to bring into the country, but they are illegal to POSSESS. You can't even HAVE them. I'm guessing the founding fathers did not have the time to include "poorly thought out yard games" in their list of priorities, otherwise we would have that in the constitution. Which brings me to CAN: An AR-15!
First off, I swear the first person that tries to turn this blog into a gun debate is going to get a Lawn Dart to the junk. BUT, yes it IS a little odd that it's easier for me to get an AR-15 than a functioning set of Lawn Darts. But as the official X96 "Right Wing Gun Nut" I can attest to how easy it is to buy a firearm. I bought my AR online on a website called gunbroker.com, which is like eBay for guns. That's not a joke. There is an eBay for guns, and it's awesome!
That fence is in SERIOUS trouble.
And while it was perfectly safe, and I had to have it shipped to a local gun store so that all the background info could be done, it's still true that I bought a very sophisticated weapon on the internet from what most people by now are picturing as a cartoon villain. CAN'T: KINDER EGGS.
Kinder Eggs are neat. They're small chocolate eggs containing smaller plastic choking hazards masquerading as toys. I don't know of any child that is able to swallow an entire egg whole, but as a new dad I can promise you that kids will figure out how to put an entire cat in their mouth in the 5 seconds it takes you to realize that your cat is missing. The law keeping us safe from Kinder Egg terrorism actually pre-dates their invention by about 30 years, dating back to a time that according to HBO's Boardwalk Empire was full of sex and death. I don't have the law in front of me, but it sums up as "hey don't put stuff in our food".
Turns out most things involving "choking" were discouraged.. Get it?
I actually had no idea what these were until a saw a news story a couple of years ago about a guy threatened with $10,000 in fines and jail time for bringing a handful of Kinder Eggs into the US from Canada. So while it's perfectly legal for a guy who played "fence darts" as a kid to buy an AR-15 on the internet, it's OUT OF THE QUESTION to bring a Kinder Egg into the country. Which is funny because one of my favorite things to do WITH my AR-15 is shoot something called "Tannerite" CAN: Tannerite!
Tannerite is actually a brand name for an "exploding target". Basically fertilizer and aluminum that when mixed with a shot from a rifle makes a huge mess out of anything that happens to be near by. Never heard of it? Check out what it can do to a car. So yeah obviously there are some restrictions that come with this one, but for the most part, and especially here in Utah, it's legal to buy year round, and legal to make ka-blooey noises. You can literally go into a sporting goods store and buy a jar of this stuff for about what it would cost to eat some Taco Bell. You might even get the same results.
You’ll want to make some delicious brownies.
CAN’T: Advil Cold and Sinus.
Alright, so a bit of a stretch. Of course it’s not actually a CAN’T. But thanks to a little thing called meth it’s a serious pain in the ass to get. I have to give the cashier my drivers license, which means I have to take it out of the little window thing in my wallet. I hate doing that… You know what I can buy WITHOUT a drivers license?
Yeah man. The one tool that is almost as synonymous with murder and dismemberment as it is for its intended use. Think about it. Have you ever been chased out of a local haunted house with a box of Sudafed? No. BUT I can go into a Home Depot right now and pay 50 bucks cash for a chainsaw without so much as a “hello” before I’m out dismembering a clown that I have in the trunk of my car. I’m also pretty sure it’s against the law to have a clown in the trunk of your car. I’ll have to check into that.
Intern Zach McEntire here, or "Z" as Richie sometimes calls me. I recently talked to the historians of the Utah Historical Society concerning the name and history of 300 S. Street, or more commonly known as Broadway.
According to an article in the old Salt Lake Telegram (former newspaper publication), the idea to change the name to Broadway was proposed and petitioned by multiple local businesses and department stores that relocated to Broadway from Main Street. During the time, there were a lot of updates and changes made to the street, accoridng to the article, "[T]he changes that have been made in the Third South street skyline during the last few months, and the transforming of the thoroughfare from a 'back street' into one of the potentially greatest and busiest streets of the city, by reason of the contemplated transfer of a number of the largest department stores of the state, and other big businesses from Main Street loaction to the new shopping district, persons who revisit Salt Lake City wihtin the next year...will be compiled to ask one of the neatly unifromed policemen...if they dropped from the train in the wrong town."
Because of these changes on 300 South and the relocation of multiple businesses - some of them being department stores such as Paris and Keith O’Brien - these businesses wanted a more distinct name that would draw more people, specifically visitors, into their stores - especially since the street was right next to the train stop. According to the Salt Lake Telegram, “Among the arguments that are offered by those favoring the change is the fact that this thoroughfare is one of the widest business streets in the country: that the view from the Denver & Rio Grande and the Western Pacific passenger station, at the foot of the street is one of the most enticing that can be seen from any railroad passenger station in America: that a large bulk of the city’s retail business will eventually be done on that street; and, finally, that Broadway is a distinctive name, one that commands and holds attention.”
However, there were some who were opposed to the name change. According to another article in the Telegram, the Post Office doesn’t agree with the name change stating, “If the name Third South is changed to Broadway it will set a new precedent. New names will be creeping in and taking the places of all our good old-fashioned names. It's all right to name streets after our New Yorkers and brethren from other cities when we can find no other names suitable, but this idea of uprooting our foundation of street names is painful to me.”
At the time, the petition was turned down by the city comission, they thought of it as “ill advised.” So, business owners simply referred to the street as Broadway and after decades of the street being called Broadway, the titlewas added as an additional address name.
We’ve been hearing for YEARS now “oh yeah, there’s a new Tool album coming”. Literally, YEARS. Which is almost long enough for me to have played “10,000 Days” from start to finish.
Wait, which one of these is about Prison Sex?
The members of Tool are now opening up and explain that some legal issues have added to the delay, and are mostly to blame for the gap between albums. Maynard and Co. tell the assholes at "Rolling Stone" that for the past seven years, they've been dealing with a series of lawsuits and countersuits. This hullabaloo started when a friend of guitar man Adam Jones wanted credit for artwork he claimed he gave the band. Tool's insurance company then sued the band "over technicalities" in the case, then Tool said “NUH UH” and responded with a countersuit.
Wait, did he call the people from Rolling Stone assholes?
This specific case is set to go to trial in January, but Jones says these legal issues have had an impact on the band members' relationships with each other, and adds that it's "hard to be creative when you have something awful nagging at you."
Still, Tool has found time to work on new material for the follow-up to the band's 2006 effort "10,000 Days." Drummer Danny Carey says they hope to have "something really solid" recorded by the end of the year, but he admits he said the same thing last year.
I suppose we'll wait and see!
Fantasy Con took place last week July 3-5 at the Salt Palace and Radio From Hell sent their intern Hollywood Tim to experience the fantasy! Take it away, Tim!
Fantasy Con was packed with excitement from the start. The long line of fans dressed as various fantasy characters eagerly waited to get in and live out their fantasies. Packed with fantastic celebrity guests and a plethora of exhibits and interactive events, Fantasy Con had something for everybody.
The Fantasy Con Dragon
Welcome to Fantasy Con!
I started my day by checking out all of the booths in the Hall of Heroes. One of the best booths for kids was the “Fairy Tailored” booth where kids could get dressed up like their favorite princess. Every member of their staff was dressed as a Princess or Fairy Godmother making every kid excited to see their favorite princess.
For the adults there were so many great booths with collectibles, DVD’s, large walking monsters and more. One stop that everybody loved was our BFOP’s at Creature Encounters. Lucky visitors got to hold the snakes, bearded dragons, spiders and many other crawly creatures they had to see.
BFOP's from Creature Encounters
Fear Factory brought some of their creatures to wander arounds Fantasy Con that gave the unsuspecting fan quite the scare when they turned the corner to find the monster waiting for them.
The Free Archery Range was a very popular attraction with a continual line all weekend long for fans wanting to channel their inner Legolas and Katniss.
Throughout the main hall, there were plenty of props for fan photo ops. The most popular seemed to be the Jabba and Ewok props. Fans were able to take pictures with the beloved Star Wars characters while waiting to get in line for autographs with celebrity guests.
The panels during Fantasy Con were excellent. The cast of the hit SyFy show, ‘Lost Girl’ kicked things off Thursday morning with a hilarious and entertaining panel.
The cast of 'Lost Girl'
Sean Astin’s panel was definitely one to remember. The actor recounted many great stories from The Goonies, Rudy, The Lord of the Rings, and even the locally filmed movie, The Freemason. Two of the highlights of his panel were hearing Sean recite the speech his gave to Froto as Sam Wise in Lord of the Rings: Two Towers, as well as shouting “Goonies never say die!”
Following Sean Astin’s panel was The Hobbit Whose Line Is It Anyway, featuring members of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings cast. Graham McTavish, Jed Brophy, Ken Stott, John Callen, William Kircher, and Adam Brown entertained the crowd with stories on and off the set of both of the herald films, and insight about a special calendar that they had made for Director Peter Jackson.
The Hobbit Whose Line Is It Anyway
The much-anticipated arrival of the hilarious filmmaker Simon Pegg left everybody in attendance more than satisfied. Simon Pegg’s panel was hilarious as fans asked questions about his classic films from Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz and The World’s End. Simon gave the crowd an in depth discussion into the psyche of his well-written and beloved characters. For the film geeks in the audience, this was a great opportunity to learn from a great filmmaker about the lengths he goes to for great character development.
The last panel I attended was Mark Sheppard from Supernatural, Doctor Who, Firefly and Battlestar Galactica. Mark’s main discussion was geared towards playing the character of Crowley in Supernatural. I must say, for being known as the King of Hell, Mark Sheppard was an incredibly nice guy. Mark didn’t have a moderator for his panel and spent the entire panel at the front of the stage with the crowd, where he would continually climb off the stage and hug members of the crowd and even talk to a little girl waiting for her mom to ask as question.
Overall, my entire Fantasy Con experience was excellent. If you weren’t able to make it out this year you truly missed out on a great party. I couldn’t have asked for a better time and can’t wait for next year’s event.
The Fantasy Con Rock Montster
The amazing Fantasy Con fountain
Thanks for having us Fantasy Con!
Follow Tim on Twitter @timdrake
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