Tuesday, February 20, 2024

Great Sadness.

 With great sadness to report that Andrea has passed away peacefully in her sleep on Saturday February 17 of Bile cancer. Andrea battled every day never gave up but the cancer was too much.  She was surrounded by her family. Andrea really enjoyed your card and letters and flowers. She was loved and will be missed by us and her many friends and fans and the Breyer Model Horse community. Thank you for all the love and prayers and support you sent her way. Andrea's legacy will live on forever .Take care.  The Gurdon Family.

Sunday, January 28, 2024

Sometimes The Only Way Out Is Through

Hey guys, still alive – though not doing much kicking, understandably. Having good days and bad days; hopefully more good than bad moving forward, once the new meds finally kick in.

And if not, Mom’s been crushing it with the vanilla milkshakes.

The worst part of this whole situation is the fact is that I can’t get anything done. I finally have a perfectly legitimate excuse to quilt to my heart’s content, and I can’t, dammit!

And speaking of that, If I haven’t gotten back with anyone, I apologize; I really do appreciate all the cards and plants and letters. Especially the cards and letters – y’all know how much I love ephemera! And feel free to drop me a note anytime. I read everything. 

If you were wondering what my hypothetical BreyerFest selections are, they should be pretty obvious:

As far as Limited Editions go, it’s: Blue Zeus and the Best of BreyerFest Stablemates. Blue Zeus because he’s a Blue Roan Fireheart and the actual live horse I’m basing my Mesteno Custom on. 

The Stablemates are a no-brainer: Stablemates were the first  models I bought with my own money back in the Dark Ages. I am also pretty keen on the mold matches: they are uncannily on point this year, though one is also pretty darn obvious. (I can only imagine what kind of ruckus would have been kicked up if they didn’t pick the Fighting Stallion for Kick Up Your Heels.) 

I think Flowers, the 2021 Raffle Model Bonheur on the Loping Quarter Horse, is probably my favorite here. Such a pretty shade of Chestnut!

Special Runs: I Will Survive (Quagga), and either Fight Song (Pinto Lipizzan) or The Edge of Glory (Ashquar). In spite of my declaration to the contrary, it looks like at least one of my selections this will be chosen purely on sentiment alone. And partly because it’s unavoidable at this point: sometime the only way out of a difficult situation is through.

Saturday, January 20, 2024

Back Again

Hey everybody. 

Sorry about the lack of updates, but I have been having a rough week and was physically incapable of doing anything. Going forward for the next few or several weeks, depending on the diagnosis, my posting schedule will be pretty limited and probably not too focused on model horses. I am aiming for once a week, or whenever I have something I need to say.

I am home now and have a lot of doctor appointments lined up for next week. I am still a little uncomfortable about revealing any more until I get a confirmed diagnosis, but I can tell you that BreyerFest looks very questionable at this point. I was so looking forward to the cake...

(It was to celebrate my fiftieth anniversary of collecting. Yellow cake with gold frosting, with maybe a Traditional Man o War on top.)

Since it is very unlikely I will be returning to work anytime soon, either, I would love to have more model horse friends to talk shop with if you happen to be in the area. I have access to my computer now so feel free to e-mail me or call me whenever you can. I will answer when my time, my energy level, and my schedule allows.

Beyond that, all I am trying to do now is get my pain under control and find out where I put my appetite. 

Again, thank you for all your kind thoughts and well wishes; I am always amazed how the model horse community rises to the occasion when it needs to: it truly is the best of all possible hobbies.

(Well, except for the scammers, cheaters and thieves. Those guys always suck, in or out of the hobby.)

Friday, January 12, 2024

Health Update

I was admitted to the hospital today. Still no news on what I actually have yet; I am currently awaiting for more tests. I ran out of pain meds and my condition did not improve...

The BreyerFest Adonis is not a complete surprise; I am just glad he is not a Prize Model or Raffle Model, because I definitely would have hurt some people if it was.

I would have preferred a solid (we all know he would totally rock a Glossy Solid Bay-Black!) But I am quite literally in no condition to complain.

More later when I have more.

Wednesday, January 10, 2024

Positive Spins

I’ve been trying to put a more positive spin on things lately, pretty much because I don’t have much say in the matter. 

In debilitating pain and unable to eat much? Oh well, I wanted to change my diet and lose weight anyway. And all my jeans are fitting again! (Still haven’t found a meal replacement shake that doesn’t take revolting though. And I am absolutely not a picky eater!)

The weird turn that this year’s BreyerFest theme has taken? That means I’ll be picking out models I want based purely on aesthetics, rather than be cluttered by any lingering sentiments about the name or concept. Which means I’m digging the Dunalino True North: one of my favorite colors on one of my favorite newer molds!

I’m not sure why everyone is wigging out about the breed assignment; it wouldn’t be any different from the majority of other releases that have come out since… forever. If half your showstring isn’t some flavor of fence-jumper, you’re just not being creative.

Speaking of fence-jumpers, the latest Limited Edition reveal for BreyerFest certainly isn’t disappointing! The original Brown Sunshine release kinda-sorta had a pre-release party at BreyerFest in 1996, but Alan a Day’s Work represents the first true BreyerFest Exclusive on the mold. Special Runs on the Brown Sunshine mold are fairly rare in general, with the last one being Greenacres for the Ponies & Palm Trees Event in 2022.

Unfortunately, there’s no positive spin I can put on the Spokes & Spurs Exclusive Event thing: as a single-type person with just one official club membership to my name, the odds of me getting picked are just not very good. And I’d really rather not try to formulate a “Plan D” vacation at this point. I don’t have time for that nonsense.

Best to put that one in a box and come back to it later, I guess.

And finally, I suppose I should say something publicly about latest in big model horse news: the sale of Stone Horses. 

All I’ll say is that I had (a) I was not surprised, and (b) I had suspected something was in the works for a bit.

It’s been well over a decade since I’ve bought any Stone Horses at all, and nothing I saw in any of the news or press releases is going to persuade me to change course. 

Saturday, January 6, 2024

Credit, Where Credit Is Due

I am still not feeling great, but I am definitely better than I was a couple days ago; I’m hoping this course of treatment is successful, so I can actually move on and finish all the stuff around the house I couldn’t do over my Winter Break. 

Technically I am not in any condition to rant further about the distressing turn the generic (nonportrait) Special Runs for this year’s BreyerFest have taken, but I have to say that I am finding it increasingly more depressing than the Horse Heroes situation. At least those were named after “heroes” of a sort; the connection between “overcoming adversity” and “Girl Power ballads” is more than a bit stretched.

All marketing, in the end, is a cash grab capitalizing on current trends and fads, so I tend to cut most companies a lot of slack when it comes to new product marketing: the purpose of a company is to make money. (I get into this argument with people at work all the time. “Why are we making this, and not that?” Because that’s what’s selling right now.)

But this turn feels so obvious, contrived, and contrary to what they themselves have been trying to do for the past several years, which is make the hobby more inclusive. A balance could have been struck here; you could have folded “Girl Power ballads” into it with just the Stablemates, and not steer the entire theme in that direction.  

Nope, never mind, let’s go back to yet another variation of Princesses and Cowgirls!

Bummer for all of us who are not sparkly pink aspiring Girlbosses. 

(I wear size 11 shoes look terrible in pastels, and am a bookish introvert: it was never an option.)

The 2024 Regular Run releases are actually pretty great, though. I especially like the Element Series Collection Classics, based on the Eastern – rather than Western – Elements. I think my favorite is the Harper Iridium, because it reminds me of the metallic Super Chase Stablemates I have been utterly unable to locate. Teak is also intriguing; is he the first official Classics-scale release in Woodgrain? My brain is a bit addled by the painkillers, so I am not so sure at the moment…

I am absolutely not a skier (hello, total lack of coordination bordering on disability), but I really like this year’s Christmas Horse Apr├Ęs Ski, too. A Red Bay Big Ben with a Gulastra Plume? Clever, attractive and imaginative – now that’s the (lift) ticket!

I’d like to comment further on the Halloween Horse Beowolf, who initially garnered a pretty enthusiastic response because hello, we are all nerds here. But now that it appears that the design may be at the center of a potential controversy, I’ll wait for more info on that developing story before I say anything more. 

Wednesday, January 3, 2024

From Marvelpalooza to Taylor Swiftmas

Never have I felt more out of the target demographic than I did with the not-completely-unexpected reveal of the 2024 BreyerFest Stablemates:

Look, I am all for any excuse to bring back Purple Filigree, because Purple Filigree RULES, but I am NOT a “Girl Power Ballad” person. I’ve got nothing against Taylor Swift personally or aesthetically, but my current musical tastes run more toward 1980s Synth Pop, Metal, and Classic Rock. And to be perfectly honest, the very first thing that popped into my head is:

“Oh no, this is Horse Heroes all over again, isn’t it?”

As in, a tangential reference that might end up taking over the whole darn theme, and one that walks right up to the legal borders of infringement?

Yeah, I know it’s only the Stablemates and Celebration Horse that have been revealed so far, and we have about 50 or so more releases to prove me wrong, but it’s still making me nervous.

Especially since I kind of feel the whole “Girl Power” movement is a little troubling in and of itself; all I’ll say here is that there are people in my life who have completely and utterly embraced it, and… I am not particularly fond of their company. 

Update: oof, looks like I was right: they are definitely going 100 percent full bore in that direction. Sigh. The model is beautiful and the Indian Pony always sells well, but seriously, aside from the thematic issues, song lyrics just aren’t very good names.

I am also not thrilled that it’s making me feel old, but some of my ongoing health problems are also to blame for that; I was going to call the doctor yesterday to make an appointment about my back, but I almost ended up in the ER instead for another reason entirely. 

(I’ll leave out the gory details: not because I don’t want to share, but because they may be triggering.)