So I was laying in bed one night thinking about how much I love Doctor Who (stay with me now) and felt compelled to share my drowsy musings.
Answers… Sort of
Doctor Who, as well as most sci-fi, gives us answers to science questions. Albeit a fictional answer, but an answer nonetheless. But if Star Trek taught us anything it’s that science fiction doesn’t always stay fiction. With subjects like parallel universes and time travel, some Doctor Who episodes can be seen as scientific theories with a plot.
Doctor Who exercises our imagination by showing us our possible future. Pretty much anything you imagine can be made into a Doctor Who episode, which we have learned is sometimes for the worse. But it’s in those campy plots and shoddy graphics that my love somehow grows for this show. I just hope I’m around when we discover star whales and a planet with sapphire waterfalls.
We’re His Fave
Shattered gemstone waterfalls and wibbly wobbly time travel aren’t the most important things I takeaway from Doctor Who. The most significant thing for me is surprisingly human.
Traveling around time and space can easily make any human feel insignificant. But the Doctor, a genius who has arguably seen more of the universe than anyone else (except for maybe the Face of Boe), loves Earth and humans… Even when it’s hard for us to love ourselves. Out of all of the fascinating planets and beings, he always come back to Earth. And although one answer may be that it makes filming the show much easier, I like to think that it has to do with how important we are.
The Impossible Girl
I may not have a TARDIS to take me through time and space and make me question my importance in the universe, but I do have the stars. The furthest star is 13.8 billion light years away, a distance I can’t even fathom. But instead of that distance making me feel small and insignificant, it makes me feel like the most important being in the universe. Out of all of that, I exist.
Although I met Alison only briefly at The Doctor Who World Tour, it’s a moment that I will remember forever… The thing is, I wasn’t even supposed to be at the #DWWorldTourin NYC. I was one of many who couldn’t get tickets. Then the day before the event, my friendYisselasked if I wanted to go in her place. Her friend Christina had an extra ticket and Yissel couldn’t make it. I mean, why would I not want to go? Doctor Who is my favorite thing in all of time and space. I was lucky enough to meet Matt Smith and the crew notoncebuttwicea few years ago. Now I get to see Peter Capaldi in the flesh!
So Thursday afternoon I put on a bunch of TARDISes and set off to see the Doctor and the companion and the Moff hosted by Chris Hardwick of the Nerdist. I met the golden ticket holder,Christina, in line at around 2pm and we instantly hit it off. The event wasn’t until 7PM but Whovains were in line since 1AM the night before. As usual with line cons (line con: (noun) the very long lines geeks wait in at geeky events and conventions) we made friends with the Whovians around us. (Shout out to Monica and Tatiana!) There were constant bursts of cheers going on during the line con, mostly because BBC America kept asking us to cheer for footage. They even interviewed me and my new Who friends, but only time will tell if I’ll make the final cut. We passed the time by talking about favorite Doctors and companions, crazy DW theories and other geeky things. Time seemed to fly by up until the last hour, or should I say the Eleventh hour, which seemed the longest. Legs were hurting and caffeine was needed. (Let’s see how many Doctor Who puns I can fit in this post.)
AnyWHO at about 7:30PM they finally let us in and me and my Who crew got pretty close to the front. They played the U.S. premier of season eight and it was awesome. I laughed a lot. I almost cried. Typical Doctor Who feels. I can’t tell you any more because of *River Song voice* spoilers.
Peter Capaldi was all I really cared about though. Here in my face was this new 12th Doctor face. But oh man, he was amazing in the first episode. He really really was. You’re gonna love him I’m sure of it. Then Q&A happened which was also very cool but I don’t remember a lot of it because I kept staring at Capaldi. And his eyebrows. Oh and Neil Gaiman was there! How could I forget?!… Oh yeah because I didn’t see him. He tweeted he was there which spread like wildfire on the line con but I didn’t see him. But I felt his presence (jk not really).
Chris Hardwick, Peter Capaldi, Jenna Coleman and Steven Moffat
So now on to the best and most important part of the whole entire day. As I was being ushered out of the theater a lady whovian named Alison came up to me, (bet you were wondering when I’d bring her up again) and said something like, “Hi Jamila, I am a fan of your blog.” And I’m like omgwut? First off, I don’t usually meet people in person who are fans of my blog. So when I do meet GGG readers I usually think they are mistaking me with someone else. Some other blog with “girl”and “geek” in the title, which is probably quite a few. So then Alison continued to tell me all of these kind things about my blog and myself and what a great job she thinks I am doing and I was hit with wave after wave of emotions. Shock. Happiness. Confusion. ME? All of this is about me? What?! Then of course in true Jamila fashion, those tears that almost came out during the Doctor Who episode came back.
The thing is, I was having a pretty shitty week personally. Then that shittiness was multiplied by Ferguson and Robin Williams. I had cried a few times earlier that week about sad stuff, so to cry about something happy when I needed it the most is something I’ll never forget. I just blog into the void not knowing who is reading my blog, let alone cares about it. So to meet someone like Alison is something I still can’t even comprehend. I still get emotional thinking about it. I’m forever grateful for that.
Let’s end on a quote from the Doctor,
“What’s the point of being happy now if they’re going to be sad later? The answer is of course- because they are going to be sad later.”
“You had me at meteorite necklace”, is how I felt when I landed on WeTheSciencey’s Etsy shop. So I can own a necklace that has a metorite fragment in it? SOLD! Who wouldn’t want to flaunt a bit of space around their neck?! And that’s not it! We the Sciencey’s shop is bursting will all sorts of science and sci-fi items that will have you manically clicking “Add to Cart”. What makes it even better is every month WeTheSciencey chooses a new Kickstarter project to back with a percentage of every sale. It’s a win/win!
The handmade (and space-made) meteorite necklace is just as beautiful as I daydreamed! It arrived in a cute little drawstring bag which includes an informational card about the meteorite fragment history and meteorites in general. The necklace itself includes an 18in silver-color chain with genuine meteorite fragment(s) incased in a glass bottle pendant. My meteorite fragment is a chondrite from fall NWA 869 and was found in 2000 in Northwest Africa. It’s pretty freaking cool.
I’m Noah, a 23-year old human girl who likes to think of herself as a creator and who is always on the lookout for grand adventures and tea with Jammie Dodgers. That aside, I am a sailor-in-training and I also want to be an astronaut.
Can you tell us the origin story of your shop, We the Sciencey?
One day, as I was sitting in chemistry class and sketching reaction mechanisms, the thought occurred, “wouldn’t it be brilliant to be able to buy things that are …chemistry-y! but beautiful, because there’s something quite lovely about science.” Just look at the stars on a clear night, in place far away from civilisation…it’s science, but it’s beauty. I wanted to make a place where the two could be celebrated together. Science & art. And then, maybe a semester later, I discovered ‘Doctor Who’. It was perfectly inspiring and added the fictional and imaginative side; I loved that I found an outlet for so many things I loved since childhood, and knew others loved as well. I wanted to share it and have been doing so since!
Which have been some of your favorite pieces to make?
The Meteorite Necklace is, by far, my favourite piece in the shop. Somehow I always end up day-dreaming and imagining the life of the meteorite and its incredibly epic journey hurtling through time and space. It’s kind of mysterious and awe-inspiring! I also just like the idea of people carrying bits of outer-space around with them. :D
Do you have any (other) geeky obsessions? If so what?
I LIKE CHEMISTRY. And SPACE. Art & design. Anddd…well, lots of things. In terms of science-fiction, I’m definitely a Trekkie-Whovian-type hybrid. I find science fiction to be full of wonder and fantasticalness. If I feel a bit stuck, creative-wise, just watching an episode of Star Trek (original
series mostly) or Doctor Who always jostles my imagination awake again.
If you had to live in a fictional sci-fi universe for a month, which would it be and why?
Definitely the Doctor’s universe. I mean, just. Yes. Just think…the adventures, the cultures, the mysteries, the questions and answers and discoveries and beautiful vastness andandand! *sigh* CAN I JUST GO NOW?!?! >.<
Which science fiction tech can you not wait to become science reality?
A replicator! The closest thing I have is the MakerBot Replicator 2 which is a 3D printer. And though, it is pretty freaking amazing, it is limited to creating objects out of 2 varying types of materials and requires a lot of time/learning (which isn’t necessarily a bad thing ;) ). The Star Trek replicator could solve a lot of problems, especially food and medicine shortages. It could also cause a lot of issues if misused. So, while I think it would be a lovely piece of equipment to have in theory….perhaps it might be better that it doesn’t exist. SO. The TARDIS, then. =]
If you were on a deserted island what video game, comic/book, movie, TV show would you bring?
I’d bring: The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past, A brilliant chemistry textbook so I can invent things to retrofit the island, Space Odyssey 2001, and the Doctor Who series’.
Can you tell us a little bit about yourself? Athey: I’m 30, married, and have two kids, age six and three. I live in Central Oregon, where I’ve been for the last nine years. I moved here from Seattle, where I went to college. For eight years, I worked in the video games industry as a production artist. My husband also works in the video games industry, and for the same studio I did. When you’ve got two people, both working full-time for a game studio with yearly crunch hours, it can make things overly complicated, and after a series of events, I ended up at home instead.
What inspired you to a career in 3D art? Athey: Long long… long, ago, when I was in middle school, a friend of mind got me a pirated copy of 3D Studio for DOS, that his friend’s father had brought back from a business trip to China. This was long before the days of bit torrent and easy software pirating – hah – so this was a huge deal. Half the people I knew didn’t even have a computer at home.
So, I had no idea what I was doing, but I loved it anyway. Looking back, I know I did everything wrong, but it was a learning-blind self-taught sort of experiment. To put things into perspective a bit – There was no Undo option in this program. There was no shaded view, only wireframes, and there was no back face culling. You saved every thing you did, just in case something went wrong, but if you didn’t realize you’d messed up until sometime later, you’d probably already saved over any opportunity to back up before the mistake because the hard disk was so small that you couldn’t afford saving even a half-dozen iterations of your file. And if you wanted to edit a texture map? You had to close the program, exit out of DOS, boot up Windows, load up your graphic editing program, make whatever changes you needed to make and save it – shut windows down, go back into DOS, wait the excruciating long time it took to do all this and load up 3D Studio, and then hope and pray you got everything right.
Despite all this, I was hooked, and years later, when the guidance councilors were pressuring all us high schoolers to decide what we wanted to do with the rest of our lives and apply to a bunch of different colleges, I decided I wanted to go into 3D Animation.
Originally the goal was 3D art for movies, but that eventually morphed into 3D art for games. There was definitely no plan, way back then, to be 3D modeling for a home 3D printer. Definitely never saw that coming.
Warpzone Prints happened mostly because of a guy at my old work named James. James is a mad-scientist kind of guy. He likes to build things. He’s very into DIY stuff, and he built himself a 4ft x 4ft CNC in his garage a few years ago. He’s also made an Egg-bot, and a number of other crazy things. He’d been eyeballing 3D printers for a long while and ended up deciding that, this time, he’d get one that was pre-built, rather than building it himself. He bought a Makerbot Replicator when they were pretty much brand new.
My husband and I had printed things through Shapeways for years at this point, but we’d sort of disregarded the at-home 3D printers because the quality just wasn’t good enough yet.
When we saw the stuff that James was able to make with his Replicator, we caved in and ordered one of our own.
It was, quite literally, nothing more than a toy in the beginning. We thought it was really cool, and wanted one. That was all there really was to it. But we told ourselves that maybe we could make it pay itself off a bit, by printing things for other people, and maybe even selling stuff on Etsy.
At this point, we were both still working full-time in the games industry, so anything done on the bot, was done in our free time.
After my job in video games came to an end early this last fall, I had a lot more free time on my hands and ended up putting a lot more time and effort into the Etsy store and the one item that seemed really popular – cookie cutters.
I made a ton of new designs and started taking custom orders, and things just kind of exploded from there.
Do you have any geeky obsessions? If so, what? Athey: Oh… so many. Let’s see – for a 30-year old mom-of-2, I’m probably unhealthily addicted to Harry Potter. I even made my own full set of Slytherin Robes for Halloween a number of years back.
I love Portal, and 3D Printed my own Portal gun last summer. I started working on the model for making a Wheatley core, but then I got busy and it was kind of a hugely intensive project to figure out how to separate it into pieces small enough to print and then to assemble together.
I -Love- Game of Thrones, and thing Peter Dinklage is absolutely amazing.
All three of my cats, and my daughter, are named after characters from One Piece. My son is named after a character from Final Fantasy 7. Both my kids have the middle initial D, because of One Piece. I intend to wait until they’re much much older, and in a forgiving mood, before I tell them this.
My husband’s ‘man-cave’ is a Retro-Gaming wet-dream of collectables and rare games and consoles, including an actual Neo Geo arcade cabinet that was an outrageous struggle to get up the stairs because it weighs a ton, and is huge.
We have a life-size Master Sword and Shield mounted on the wall of one house along with a huge framed map of Hyrule. We also have a life-size Buster Sword. It is very very heavy.
If Kirby were to swallow you, what power would he get? Athey: Probably the power to speed up time. I seems like every time I start working on something, I blink, and its been five hours.
If you were on a deserted island, what video game, comic/book, movie, TV show would you bring? Athey: I’d probably bring all of One Piece. It’s very… very…. long. It would last a while. Although, I would magically have it be finished, too. Maybe I’d just bring Eichiro Oda with me.
Our favorite madman in the blue box is back on TV and what better way to celebrate than with a giveaway! You don’t have to wait until Saturday to have the doctor in your life, check out these three new Doctor Who books from Broadway Books! Details about the three new book below.
1. Answer the question: What’s your favorite episode of Doctor Who and why?
– Classic Doctor Who DVD Giftpack: “Doctor Who: Shada”
Original adventures featuring the Eleventh Doctor as played by Matt Smith
in Doctor Who, the spectacular hit series from BBC Television
Doctor Who: Plague of the Cybermen
By Justin Richards
Doctor Who: The Dalek Generation
By Nicholas Briggs
Doctor Who: Shroud of Sorrow
By Tommy Donbavand
Since Doctor Who’s 2005 revival after an almost fifteen-year hiatus, the British sci-fi showhas become an American cult phenomenon, as an Entertainment Weekly cover feature noted in August 2012. But the show’s U.S. following is such that “cult” may well be an understatement. In September, 2.47 million Americans watched Matt Smith and Karen Gillan as the Doctor and Amy in the show’s season seven premiere, giving BBC America its highest rating ever—previously, in 2011, the show was iTunes’ number one most downloaded television series, outselling favorites such as Glee and Mad Men. In December, Doctor Who won TV Guide’s “Fan Favorites,” and 2.4 million viewers tuned in to the show’s Christmas special.
Who fervor is on the rise, given the show’s 50th anniversary this year, so Broadway is thrilled to introduce its forthcoming paperback original Doctor Who tie-in series, sure to feed that insatiable fandom. Featuring all-new Eleventh Doctor adventures and to be published on April 2 to coincide with the new Doctor Who episodes that will air on BBC America starting March 30, Justin Richards’s Doctor Who: Plague of the Cybermen, Nicholas Briggs’s Doctor Who: The Dalek Generation, and Tommy Donbavand’s Doctor Who: Shroud of Sorrow are penned in collaboration with BBC’s Cardiff-based TV production team. These authors are given advance access to the scripts of forthcoming episodes and made privy to the secrets of the Doctor’s future before even the most fanatical of fans. Approved by the BBC to make sure nothing is overlooked, these books have the intimate and authentic feel of lost episodes.
In Doctor Who: The Dalek Generation, we find the Doctor investigating a world in which the Daleks suspiciously seem to be a force for good. In Doctor Who: Shroud of Sorrow, the aftermath of JFK’s assassination is the setting for an attack by an alien Shroud feasting on the grief of a world in mourning.In Doctor Who: Plague of the Cybermen, the Doctor discovers the residents of a 19th-century village beset by a plague that causes its victims to leave their graves. As we follow the Doctor through new catastrophes in history, on earth, and in space, reading Doctor Who: Plague of the Cybermen,Doctor Who: The Dalek Generation, and Doctor Who: Shroud of Sorrow might just be the next best thing to traveling around in a TARDIS, sonic screwdriver in tow, and will leave fans eagerly awaiting Broadway’s fourth all-new Doctor Who adventure, acclaimed science-fiction author Alastair Reynolds’s Doctor Who: Harvest of Time, featuring the Third Doctor, in June.
ABOUT THE AUTHORS:
JUSTIN RICHARDS has written numerous science-fiction and fantasy novels, including several previous Doctor Who tie-ins. He is creative consultant for BBC Books’ range of Doctor Who fiction.
NICHOLAS BRIGGS is a British actor and writer who has worked on Doctor Who since the 1980s. He has played numerous roles on the show but is best known as the voice of the Doctor’s archenemy, the Daleks.
TOMMY DONBAVAND is an author, actor, and playwright best known for his Scream Street novels for kids. He is also a huge fan of all things Doctor Who, plays blues harmonica, and makes a mean balloon poodle.
ALASTAIR REYNOLDS’ novels have appeared on numerous “best SF” lists and won several major awards.
Whether it’s fish fingers and custard, a Jammie Dodger, bananas or celery, food always seems to be involved when it comes to that madman in a box. So it should come to no surprise that a new Doctor Who-inspired cookbook, Dining With The Doctor: The Unauthorized Whovian Cookbook, was created by Chris-Rachael Oseland.
Dalek Ironside Toast Sandwich
Chris-Rachael’s a freelance writer by day, and by night she’s creating culinary dishes inspired by different fandoms. She recently self-published Dining With The Doctor: The Unauthorized Whovian Cookbook, her fifth book, through Amazon’s independent publishing platforms, CreateSpace (print) and Kindle Direct Publishing or KDP (e-book). Her first self-published book was a steampunk-themed cocktail book, SteamDrunks. Even though agents felt the book was well written and funny, they didn’t want to take it on because it appealed to a niche audience. Rather than letting it collect dust, Chris-Rachel decided to give self-publishing a go – and readers have been “drinking it up” ever since!
Dining With The Doctor comes out just in time for the 50th anniversary of Doctor Who later this year! This is actually the first Doctor Who cookbook since 1986. A lot has happened in the last 27 years; most importantly, the return of Doctor Who. Chris-Rachael grew up watching Doctor Who and when the show came back her love was reignited. She said, “I knew I wanted to do something big for Doctor Who’s 50th anniversary. As a food writer, I naturally started thinking about dinner parties. One recipe turned into 10, and before I knew it I decided to come up with a recipe for every single episode of the new series.”
The chef watched more than 100 hours of Doctor Who for inspiration and created a recipe for every episode! She has recipes – from “Tardis Wellington” to “Slitheen Eggs” and they are accessible for cooks of all stages and ages, and work especially well for Doctor Who viewing parties!
If you’re still hungry for more you can visit Chris-Rachael’s food blog, Kitchen Overlord, for weekly illustrated geek recipes and sneak peeks at upcoming “geektastic” projects. Chris-Rachael has two other self-publishing cookbooks in the works: Wood for Sheep: The Unauthorized Settler’s Cookbook (due out in May) and The Noshing Dead: The Unauthorized Walking DeadCookbook (slated for September, with an ebook mini-cookbook version available.)
Dining With The Doctor: The Unauthorized Whovian Cookbook is available now at Amazon.com.
To me, a chef is someone who works in a restaurant while a cook is someone who prepares food in any other setting. I can’t get up at 4 a.m. to work 16 hour days 6 days a week, so I’m happy to call myself a cook. On a professional level, I’ve also been a food and beverage writer for about 7 years.
What made you want to merge cooking and geek culture together?
Being a lifelong geek sort of forced me to start thinking about food from alternative perspectives early on. For some reason, geek culture seems to attract people with food issues. Maybe geek culture is more open about biological weirdness beyond your control, or maybe people with one weird part of their life are drawn to a culture that celebrates weirdness. Either way, you can’t go to a geek gathering without meeting someone with a lethal nut allergy, another person with Celiac disease, another who is lactose intolerant, etc. To make it even more fun, geeks who don’t have a biological issue are often attracted to extreme diets, like veganism or paleo.
If you want to get all those people to sit down to a single meal together, you’ve got to be creative and ambitious in the kitchen. Once you used to thinking about how you’re going to feed a Celiac, Vegan and Paleo dieter the same dinner, nothing seems weird anymore. So why not write a Doctor Who cookbook? It’s not as strange as an average Sunday night.
Plus, I love having people over for watch parties. Doctor Who, Game of Thrones, or The Walking Dead are all excuses to hang out with good friends and good food. I think a lot of geeks enjoy using geek culture as an excuse to get together. I’m just making it easier.
Do you have any other geek culture cook books planned for the future?
Queen Victoria’s Tipple
I do indeed! I’ve had such a good experience working with CreateSpace that I’m releasing Wood for Sheep: The Unauthorized Settlers Cookbook with them at the end of May, just in time for the summer gaming convention season. I’m still working on photographing all the recipes. You can see some previews at Kitchen Overlord. I love the fact that CreateSpace lets me keep working and tweaking right up to the point where I’m published, so there aren’t any “I wish I could’ve added…” moments. Working on the Settler’s cookbook has been a heck of a lot of fun. I’m also releasing The Noshing Dead: The Unauthorized Walking Dead Cookbook via CreateSpace in September. Thanks to my mildly scandalous love affair with my new Kitchenaid, I’m also working on a crazy book of geek breads full of things like Starfleet Insignia pain d’epi and cinnamon Wookie pull apart bread. It should be out in time for Christmas.
If you could describe the doctor as a dish, what would it be and why?
I’d say the Doctor is a bittersweet chocolate truffle full of salted caramel. Chocolate, because you’re always happy to see him. Salt for the tears he inevitably induces, cries or both. Caramel because he’s often both sweet and sappy. And a single truffle because, much like the best cholesterol filled desserts, anything more than a taste of life with the doctor will break your heart
Who is your favorite doctor and companion and why?
Rory Williams is, hands down, my favorite companion. I love the Rory as the new Chuck Norris memes. He’s developed so much from being the Doctor’s oft mocked whipping boy to being the platonic ideal of what every woman wants in a husband. (I’m sorry gentlemen. I know it’s an unrealistically high standard.) He’s also the one person willing to really acknowledge that simply meeting the Doctor is dangerous for us mere mortals. I cheered at my screen when Rory told Amy, “Any time the Doctor gets chummy with someone I want to notify their next of kin.”
That said, “favorite” Doctor is a hard one. I really like the direction Moffatt is taking things with Eleven, but since I’d like to live past next Tuesday, if a blue box materialized in my living room, I hope Nine would walk out. Well, Nine or Four. Tom Baker was my first Doctor, so he’ll always have a warm place in my heart, but I also love Eccleston for his ongoing hopeful attitude. He’s the only one who could honestly and sincerely say, “Today Rose, everybody lives!”
If you could invite 5 characters from Doctor Who to a dinner party, who would they be?
Only one dinner party? Gosh, narrowing it down to just five is hard. I’d have to say River Song, Winston Churchill, Captain Jack Harkness, Madame Vastra and sexy Shakespeare.
Oh, and Cassandra – just to make her watch us all eat.