Posts tagged Invader ZIM
I went on a business trip in November with Joey Snackpants. What does that mean? Why, more Man v. Food goodness of course! Here’s the list so far:
- Bub’s Burgers & Ice Cream in Indianapolis, Indiana
- Al’s #1 Italian Beef in Chicago, Illinois
- Edward’s Drive-In in Indianapolis, Indiana
- Big Pie in the Sky Pizzeria in Kennesaw, Georgia
- La Moon in Miami, Florida
- Joe’s Stone Crab in Miami, Florida
- The Old Salty Dog in Sarasota, Florida
- Hot N Juicy Crawfish in Las Vegas, Nevada
- The NASCAR Cafe in Las Vegas, Nevada
- Shula’s Steak House in Miami, Florida
- Gladys Knight And Ron Winans’ Chicken And Waffles in Atlanta, Georgia
- The Jack-N-Grill in Denver, Colorado
- The Buckhorn Exhange in Denver, Colorado
- The Vortex in Atlanta, Georgia
Let’s cut to the chase: No, I did not order or try to eat Special #2. I was technically in town for a business dinner and dying of extreme spicy food didn’t seem like the prudent thing to do.
Joey and I met up with some of our friends from the Invader ZIM cast and crew to discuss the upcoming InvaderCON II: DOOMCON convention that we were going to host nearby in Los Angeles. Joining us were Eric Trueheart, Richard Horvitz, Rikki Simons and Tavisha Wolfgath-Simons. Zaniness was guaranteed to ensue:
After we were seated, everyone started reading the menu. Peer pressure started to bounce around the table and (at one point) we were all certain that Eric was going to try Special #2. When the time came to order, though, he bailed on the challenge and opted to go for a normal level spicy ramen. Someday, Eric. Someday…
The misleading part about this story, though, is where I mentioned the “normal level spicy.” There’s no such thing. Check out the menu: http://www.orochon-ramen.com/menu/
Notice that Orochon 7 is the safe thing to order with Orochon 4 set to be neutral without being bland. I ordered Orochon 3 which is four levels below ultimate spiciness. I figured that should be safe enough, right? Maybe – except I was eating dinner with Richard sitting across from me and Richard (if you haven’t met him) tends to be a funny, funny guy. See:
SO. At one point during the evening, Richard was telling a story about an angry older gentlemen (who will remain nameless) he dealt with at an audition. The result? I laughed and the broth from my ramen went back in my throat and up my nose. INSTANT PAIN.
See the tears in my eyes? Those are TEARS OF PAIN from the spicy flavor of Orochon 3. At that point, I didn’t even want to imagine the special oral hell endured by any human ever attempting Special #2.
(My eyes are watering this as I type this from the memories. Seriously.)
All that said, it WAS a very tasty spicy. As with all previous MvF locations – the food lived up to the hype. The noodles and broth were both quality stuff. Since we were there in November, the weather was chilly in Southern California, but not cold. Thus the warm soup and the kick of spicy goodness really made for a quality meal.
One of the added perks to visiting may of the MvF restaurants is location. Orochon Ramen is situated in the middle of the Little Tokyo district of Los Angeles. The result of which is that you experience an extra level of ambiance when having dinner there. Right next to the restaurant was a hotel with a beautiful Japanese garden you could walk though. From there, you are afforded a great view of the city:
Orochon Ramen was good meal in a wonderful location with some great people.
Epic. Food. WIN.
When I was in Miami a couple of weeks ago I walked into a Hot Topic at some local mall. (We were there, believe it or not, looking for Alice in Wonderland Vinylmation figures. My wife collects them.)
Today marks seven months until InvaderCON II: DOOMCON kicks off. This photo stands proof that over ten years later, folks still love the cartoon.
Yes… I know it’s all Gir, but it’s still better than nothing! Now if we can only convince Hot Topic that we need more merchandise with ZIM on it. :)
UPDATE: As of 2:45 PM Eastern time, the Fake Richard Horvitz profile has been deleted by Facebook. Thanks to everyone who helped bring it to Facebook’s attention. Victory!
Being a ‘convention personality’ in the fan community has its ups and downs. I love meeting fans. I love talking to people who are excited about things in pop culture that I’m into (like anime and Transformers.) I love reading the Internet when folks post about how much they enjoy projects I work on.
Occasionally, though, I have to deal with the random idiot who tries to ruin it for everyone else. I usually just ignore the nuisance since (as we all know) you shouldn’t feed the trolls.
That said, I live in a fan culture the deals with thousands of people. I can’t even IMAGINE the headache of hundreds of thousands of fans and having to deal with the issues that can be caused by the occasional “one bad apple.”
Thus, I now segue into talking about my friend Richard Horvitz.
Richard is the voice of main character on a television show called Invader ZIM. Recently someone thought is would be funny to create a fake Facebook page and pretend to be him. Now, I’m a fan of parody and I read a number of “fake” people on Twitter. There is a difference, though, between PARODY and IMPERSONATION. The Fake Richard Horvitz Facebook profile is pretending to be him in real life. Not cool.
Richard has reported the offending page and has even made it public that someone is impersonating him. You can read the post on the InvaderCON Facebook wall here:
THIS IS THE PART WHERE I ASK FOR YOUR HELP.
It seems that Facebook is a little slow to react, so we need folks to report the Fake Richard Horvitz profile. Please follow my simple step by step instructions…
STEP 1: Go to the Fake Richard Horvitz profile on Facebook. It lookes like this:
Here’s the link: https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003088142181
STEP 2: Scroll down to the bottom left of the page and find the link that says “Report/Block”
Click the “Report/Block” link and a pop up will appear.
STEP 3: Complete the “Report and/or Block This Person” form that appears.
Check off the box that says “Block Richard Horvitz.”
Select the option that says “This profile is pretending to be someone or is fake.” You will then be asked to “Choose a type.” Select “Pretending to be a celebrity.” Next you will be asked to put in the name of the celebrity. Type Richard Steven Horvitz.
The page should look like this:
STEP 4: Select “I confirm that this report is correct” and click Continue.
Afterwards, you’ll see a popup that says “Thanks For Your Report.”
Richard reported the fake profile a number of days ago. Facebook hasn’t done anything yet, but I think if we get a large number of people to report the profile (I’m talking to YOU InvaderCON Fans and OHP Fans!) then we should get this knocked out in no time.
Thanks for your help!
Working InvaderCON was, quite simply, the greatest convention experience of my life.
I went to my first “geek” convention over twenty years ago. It was a Star Trek festival in South Florida where I won an award for dressing up like an abused Enterprise security guard. It is also where I met my first celebrity: Mr. George Takei. I still remember that weekend and how amazing it was… a gathering of people, just like me, who liked the same TV show I did and weren’t trying to hide it from classmates or co-workers.
In the land of geeks, the normal guy is the weird one.
The whole experience has been something hard to recapture over the years. There really is nothing quite like your first time.
[pause for obvious sexual innuendo]
Which leads me back to InvaderCON. My partner Joey Snackpants and the team at Wasabi Anime built the event following the format behind the classic seventies and eighties Star Trek conventions: a popular science fiction series is cut down before it’s prime and gained a cult following; fans kept it alive through other means (then: clubs/now: the Internet); someone creates a convention where fans can meet each other and also meet a number of creative people from the short lived series.
(NOTE: For those of you completely unfamiliar with Invader ZIM, please allow me to translate the InvaderCON guest list into Star Wars jargon for you: We booked “Luke Skywalker,” “Han Solo,” “Darth Vader,” and “Princess Leia.” ”George Lucas” couldn’t make it, but he sent his well wishes.)
Most conventions today have become such mega-mall events catering to a myriad of fandoms at once. I love going to many of them, like Dragon*Con, but the concept of a convention solely focused on one specific show is a rare bird. These events exist, but practically none of them take place in the Southeast United States.
Thus, InvaderCON happened.
- Since meeting for the first time at Assimilation in 2007, I’ve slowly gained the privilege of calling Richard Horvitz a friend. He’s a good person with a good heart and he “gets it” when it comes to the fan experience. People don’t just want to meet the voice of Invader ZIM – they want to enjoy doing so. Richard busts his ass at every show I’ve done with him to make sure that happens. In my book, he’s a class act and a number of convention personalities could take a note or two from him.
- I had met Rikki Simons and his wife Tavisha a couple of times before, but he and I got to know each other more and more through our long phone conversations leading up to InvaderCON. Rikki’s a kind and gentle soul and his dedication to his fans is unmatched. He experienced a personal tragedy one week before InvaderCON, but he still made it to the show and met every fan there. He’s incredible.
- Methinks Andy Berman experienced a culture shock. This was his first convention appearance as a guest, and I’m not sure he was expecting the overwhelming love for him and his character that he received. He was a true professional and a pleasure to work with. By Sunday night, after hours and hours of dodging ZADR enthusiasts and meeting random Psych fans, that man was exhausted. The dozens of Dib cosplayers (who were, strangely, all female) showed that people do, in fact, love Dib.
- The last voice talent we added to the roster when building InvaderCON was Melissa Fahn. Melissa’s accomplishments also extend outside of ZIM fandom and much of the Green Mustard Entertainment team was thrilled to meet her for that reason. She performed in Wicked on Broadway (many of the Wasabi Anime team love musicals; hello? Animusical!) and her work on Cowboy Bebop as Ed made her a joy to meet from the team. Melissa has that infectious energy that just makes you happy to be around her and she was still smiling at the end of the weekend. She had to leave early on Sunday due to other commitments, but I was sad the she missed the emotional experience and standing ovation at closing ceremonies. I hope she knows how much the fans loved having her there.
- Who’d have thought a writer could be a funny speaker? Eric Trueheart was a writer of some of the best episodes of Invader ZIM, and we were lucky enough to have him join us at InvaderCON. He’s the type of person that when you meet him, you hope you continue to know him or (at best) he continues to remember at least your first name. I could write a long post about what an awesome cat this guy was – but everyone who met him already knows that. You should check out his blog post about his experience at the convention. It’s a great insight into the emotion of the event and he conveys it much better that I ever could.
- My partner, Joey Snackpants, made sure the ship kept running. Our talents balance each other perfect – as illustrated during the charity auction on Sunday. I started it, sucked at it, and he took over. We work that way… it’s that strange being able to finish each other’s sentences or have the same train of thought. All of it, of course, in a strictly heterosexual way.
- Speaking of charity, did I mention that InvaderCON raised almost $2000 for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation? Epic. Geek. Convention. WIN.
- My wife Shannon is the person at each convention that keeps me sane. I could go on for hours about how amazing she his, but I’ve made it a habit to tell her every day we’re together. This has, of course, resulted in her developing an ego almost as outrageous as mine which just makes her THAT MUCH MORE AWESOME.
- InvaderCON did not operate on volunteers; we ran it with staff. The team from Wasabi Anime (Green Mustard Entertainment) took years of convention experiences and distilled it down to a pure form of energy that fueled our “little convention that could.” Thank you (in no particular order) Katie, Angie, Chris, the other Chris, the other other Chris, Jingoro, Tom, Janice, Ryan, Annie, Tracy aka “Trace-Wrangler,” Kaleb, Jessica, the other Jessica, J.T., Ray, & Diane. (If I am forgetting someone it is entirely unintentional; I just suck with names which is why everyone will wear name tags at The Florida Anime Experience. LOL)
InvaderCON turned out to be more than just a convention. It was a personal experience not only for myself and my team, but also for the lives of hundreds of people who traveled across the world for a weekend celebrating a cartoon that ran only twenty six episodes.
From the bottom of my heart: thank you everyone that made it happen.
For those of you that missed it here and here – Richard Horvitz was a guest at Florida Supercon the weekend before last. He stopped by the Wasabi Anime Otaku Insomnia Rave dance party to say hi, and I brought him on stage with a cosplayer dressed as GIR. Zaniness ensued.
I thought the little girl dressed as GIR was going to explode from excitement when she got off stage and realized who she had just danced with. Pure convention awesome.
I’m quite sure there will be more content as I get further into this. Updates for now: I added images so you’ll either see me as Zim, a baby flipping the bird, or Calvin. I added friends so I can read everyone elses shit while killing time.
And it seems, to date, that I know 7 people on the Internet. Go me!