austin_dern (austin_dern) wrote,
austin_dern
austin_dern

And the boys from the Casino dance with their shirts open

If there's a theme to this week's humor blog items, it's my slightly messing up the scheduling of stuff that would logically be scheduled. Well, part of that is I messed up my mathematics blog posting, but that's all right. Nobody seems to have complained. I don't feel neurotic about that at all. But also run there the past week and see what the other mis-scheduled thing was? Here.

So let me share with you some last shots from the Silverball Museum, as it stood last December. You like these, right? Close enough.

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Main playfield of Xenon, a 1980 game set in the poster for some visually awesome but honestly kinda dull Logans Run-style movie. Key to the game: ugh, who knows? Probably shoot the scoop way at the top and do drop targets in order. They're all like that.


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Main playfield for Close Encounters of the Third Kind, the pinball game, evoking the movie's iconic images of that tower and blobby amoeba shooting out lightning bolts.


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Playfield for Gottlieb's Dragon, not the game that inspires giddy cries of ``bao'' from everyone who's played it, but still, one of those surprisingly few games that has a cheery, friendly dragon I think everyone would like to hug on it.


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Some of the Silverball Museum's oldest working, playable tables: 1950s woodrails Hawaiian Beauty and Rocket. Five-ball tables and you're responsible for putting balls into the shooter lane, so, if you want to play a two- or three- or even five-ball game go right ahead! It's your choice.


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Lower playfield of Hayburners, an electromechanical with a horse-racing theme in which, among other things, you pick which of six horses in back to advance with your progress. The green horse, number 1, is named ``Uncle Miltie'', which is maybe a bit of whimsy and is maybe a slipped-in-past-the-censors joke? Also note the lower flippers point backwards from the way normal flippers do, because flippers were still new things on games at that point and anything could happen.


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Backglass of Hayburners, showing the six horses on their track, as well as highlighting the currently-lit horse and showing their names. See what I mean where Uncle Miltie stands out as a name?


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Full playfield of Doodle Bug, the quirky beloved star of the 2016 Pinburgh finals. Among the features: that little ball inset in the field, which various targets will start kicking back and forth for 10, 100, 1000, or even in theory 10,000 points a hit. Also: absolutely nothing surrounding the flippers, so there's no holding the ball or even live-catching it the way normal games allow. There is a center post that can be popped up, so you can trap the ball at the tip of the flipper, but given that every pinball player is used to trapping the ball at the base of the flipper, and here that's instant death, you can imagine how fun this is.


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Quit Playing With The Clock! Detail from my high-score-table worthy night-ending game of FunHouse, showing that it's both 11:30 and ten to midnight. (This was Chicago's first draft, before they'd worked out the meter.)


Trivia: The first tryout for the musical Mata Hari was a benefit performance for the Women's National Democratic Club at the National Theater. At this performance which, with Lynda Byrd Johnson in attendance, the show ran past midnight, scenery collapsed, and leading actress Marisa Mell was accidentally caught in a spotlight during a costume change while she was almost nude. The show closed without reaching its intended Broadway opening. Source: Not Since Carrie: 40 Years Of Broadway Musical Flops, Ken Mandelbaum.

Currently Reading: Voodoo Histories: The Role of the Conspiracy Theory in Shaping Modern History, David Aaronovitch.

Tags: humor, silverball museum
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