Who Episode 8 - Father's
May 14, 2005 - 5:15pm cst:
news to report. The bit-torrent site I've been linking to for
the new Doctor Who series has been shut down. That means I won't
be able to offer download links for new episodes anymore.
taken down the links from the previous Dr Who posts, to save
confusion. You'll still be able to find new episodes on various
BT sites, but I'm a little sketchy about revealing them at the
moment. We'll see how it goes.
in this week's show, Rose (the always excellent Billie Piper)
manages to prevent her father's untimely death, with unforseen
consequences. It promises to be another great example of the
modern, character-driven Dr Who.
and the Giant Space Bug"
May 13, 2005 - 8:00am cst:
short story by me, soon to be a beloved children's classic. Any
editors interested in publishing? Enjoy:
was a nice little boy. He liked bugs and played with them often.
One day Timmy was walking down the street when he discoverd an
enormous shadow over him and everything in sight. He looked up
and saw a giant bug.
moly!" Timmy said, because for some baffling reason he liked
to talk like that. "Are you a giant bug from outer space?"
giant bug sqinted back. "What?! What kind of stupid question
is that?! Where do you think I come from, Detroit?"
I don't know, Mister Bug," said Timmy. "You're awful
big for a bug, and bugs are my friends."
for crying out loud! Of course I'm from outer space! I'm a giant
space bug! And I'm not your freak'n friend."
golly gee, that ain't nice-"
a second. Why do you keep talking like that? What's your deal,
I dunno. Bugs like the way I talk."
You must hang around some pretty stupid bugs. You must be dumber
than a bag of rocks! Stupid kid."
was growing flustered. "But..."
was near tears, because, to be brutally honest, he was kind of
a wuss. "B-but, I'm a nice little boy and you're being mean
to me. Why are you being mean to me?"
giant space bug was really annoyed now. He didn't know whether
to walk away in disgust or simply shoot the little spud with
his space gun. In the end, he decided to take his wallet, so
the giant space bug pulled out his space gun.
that's it. Gimmie your lunch money, kid!"
really threw Timmy for a loop. Big surprise there.
heard me, Poindexter. Gimmie your lunch money!"
um..." Timmy was flustered again. Loser.
Timmy, you're the dummest kid I've bumped into today, and I already
stepped on a couple other butterballs, so don't press your luck,
Mister Bug, how do you know my name?" Timmy bawbled.
the giant space bug. "Stop pointing out the damn plot holes!
What is it with you little dorks pointing out all the plot holes
in everything?! Now hurry up and cough up the wallet. Burger
King still has one of those little hats left, and I don't want
to miss out."
Uh...okay." Timmy pulled out some spare change and a rumpled
dollar from his pockets.
hand it over," said the giant space bug.
Timmy, "how will you take my lunch money when you don't
have any hands?"
giant space bug thought this over for a moment. He looked around
at all the other houses in the neighborhood. He saw the birds
in the trees and the clouds in the sky. He pondered all of this,
and thought to himself that if he were in a Disney cartoon, then
this would be a good moment for some sort of epiphany.
Timmy," the giant space bug said.
that your house over there?" asked the giant space bug.
it is," replied Timmy.
a nice house," said the giant space bug.
then the giant space bug blew up Timmy's house with his space
was bawling again.
giant space bug really, really hated Disney cartoons.
Who Episode 7 - The
May 7, 2005 - 10:20pm cst:
wish I could say what this week's Doctor Who is about, but I'm
really not sure. The teaser footage at the end of the Dalek was
more than a little vague, but it promises a lot of fun and excitement.
If you've missed out on this great show, then be sure to give
it a chance.
From a Disney Animator
May 5, 2005 - 8:00am cst:
week, I received a letter from Merry Clingen, one of the former
Disney animators profiled in the documentary Dream
On, Silly Dreamer. My heartfelt thanks to Ms. Clingen for
offering her insights. The letter reads as follows:
you for your article about Dream On Silly Dreamer. My brother
sent me the link to your website.
I am one of the artists who were interviewed in the film (I am the woman in
the sunglasses, sitting next to a bush).
I wanted you to know that I also think that the budgets were too high on films
like Treasure Planet. But there were many factors that led to those unnecessarily
First of all, when Michael Eisner offended Jeffrey Katzenberg and Jeffrey left
to form Dreamworks, he tried to hire us all away from Disney. They paid ONE
person a very high salary ($3,500 a week), and the word got around. We all
asked for that salary from Disney, and THEY said yes to every one.
That more than doubled my salary, and my four year contract gave me substantial
raises for years, and at the end of the term I was making $4,000.00 a week.
Normally they would play hard-ball with us during contract negotiations. I
had expected them to say "no" to my request, and to negotiate my
price way down; but they were so fearful, they not only gave us what we asked
for, they were calling up artists and offering them MORE money!
But that is not the only place where the money was going. For example, when
we were in pre-production for Hunchback, they sent a large number of people
to Paris as a "perk" that was not necessary for their job. When they
did that turkey, "The Emperor's New Groove," They sent a large group
to Peru (why the Producer and their friends had to go is beyond me).
When they opened Pocahontas, they rented Central Park in New York, set up huge
screens, and ran it to enormous crowds. When we opened Hercules, they not only
sent a large group of us to New York on a chartered plane, put us all in a
fancy hotel, and had a screening in a Broadway Theatre. After that we had a
party in Windows On The World at the top of the World Trade Center. How much
do you think that cost?
Besides all this, they had a crew party at the studio with free alcohol every
Friday night. Why they seemed determined to spend all the money from The Lion
King as fast as they could was a mystery. Before all this, we were happy to
sit in our warehouse in an industrial park in Glendale, California, and simply
draw for a modest living. But because we had one huge hit, management thought
it was a good idea to build a fancy building next to the Ventura Freeway, which
was expensive to maintain, with lots of wasted space.
They also padded the management staff to a degree that was not justified by
the number of projects we were turning out. When we left, there were something
like 23 vice presidents in Feature Animation, when we were only making one
picture a year! All of those people also had staffs, and all of those people
did nothing but go to meetings and wear out the xerox machines, printing huge
reports that no one ever read.
I sat for years at my desk, and watched them throw money out the window with
both hands, knowing in my heart that we were headed for disaster. As soon as
they built that building, I knew that they were headed down the road that led
to the end of our industry. Their expectation of ever-increasing profits were
unrealistic, and having worked in Animation since 1979, I was painfully aware
that "what goes up must come down."
So if I knew this, why didn't turn down my pay raise? Would you turn down $4,000.00
a week? The end was inevitably coming; I was not the only shark in the feeding
frenzy! Disney went down by "death of a thousand cuts."
As long as you have fools at the helm, any ship is likely to go down! (forgive
me for my mixed metaphors).
May 2, 2005 - 4:45pm cst:
the entries for the month of April are now listed in the weblog
archives. That link is listed just below the Paypal button. You
should also be able to find anything you need via the search
bar at the top.
Stats at Daniel Thomas
May 2, 2005 - 4:45pm cst:
a short look at the site stats for April. DanielThomas.org got
156, 032 hits, and 49, 615 pages, 17, 178 visitors, and 23,721
sites. These numbers were just slightly below March's totals,
mostly due to one more day in the month.
more milestones were passed in April - the 1,000,000th hit and
the 100,000th visitor. It's no false modesty when I say I never
expected to reach those numbers.
comparison, here are the numbers for July, 2004, the first month
I have stats on: 55,908 hits, 9,113 pages, 4,334 visitors, 3,983
sites. And it needs to be said: I was really happy with these
numbers. I was happy to get 100 visitors.
owe all of this to Joe Osburn, an old roommate who works at a
Minneapolis internet firm called Internet Exposure. IE hosts
this site, and it was Joe's offer to put it on one of their servers
that finally forced me to create this site and make it a reality.
Joe has been gracious enough to host it for free, for which I
am also deeply grateful.
the free ride, rightfully, will soon come to an end. Daily traffic
is beginning to tax their servers, so I'll have to start paying
my dues. I'm told that should happen sometime within the next
few months, depending on the traffic. I can't really speculate
on specifics, since my traffic guesswork is terrible. In any
event, the move to a bigger IE server won't change anything for
you, the visitor.
as always, my thanks and gratitude to all who helped make this
website possible, and to all of you who visit and pass the word
along via emails, websites, and message boards. Thanks to everyone
from around the world - now numbering over 90 countries. Domo