Bubba update!  We took him back to the vet’s for a second visit, this time getting him checked out by a second doctor.  We explained that he’d been quite lethargic of late and, every so often, was given to brief trembling bouts.  The vet informed us that this was a sign he was in pain and proceeded to test his range of motion: pushing, pulling, tapping, and tweaking.  Ultimately, he discovered that Bubba was displaying discomfort along his upper spine and shoulder area, suggesting he may have twisted or pulled something at daycare.  So now, he joins Jelly on the metacam train.  Hopefully he’ll be back to his old high-strung self in a couple of weeks.

My friend (and former Stargate Special Features Producer) Ivon Bartok is on his way to Banff.  And what will he be doing in Banff?  This! =  http://www.banffmediafestival.com/deal-makers-live-with-jonathan-torrens.php#contestants  Ivon is one of the eight lucky finalists in Deal Makers Live competition that will see him present a 30 second on-stage pitch of an original show idea.  Ivon and his seven co-contestants will “go head-to-head in a high-profile, high-tech battle for the hearts and minds of both our expert panel and the live BANFF audience”.  You can follow my buddy’s progress here:  http://twitter.com/ivonbartok  Wish him luck!

Damn!  Visited a couple of the local comic book shops yesterday to discover the exclusive Randy Bowen Modok statue has sold out.  One less villain to add to the office decor. 🙁

Today, we took in Toronto’s annual Woofstock festival with two of my four dogs.  Since Jelly has a hard time getting around due to her bad hips, and because Bubba is generally high-strung and anti-social in crowds, we elected to take Lulu and Maximus out for the day…

Akemi rarin' to go.
Lulu wonders "Where's the party at?"
Maximus. Totemo hansamu!

Dogs in silly outfits…


Dogs in strollers…

Pitbulls doing their best Hannibal Lecter…

And various sights…

Maximus - ten minutes in and he's already tired.
Cooling off on a hot day.
Lulu tests out the custom dog furniture on display.
Maximus helps.

Lulu sucks up for attention.
Check out that tongue! I think this pug is half frog.
Lulu cools off.
Akemi makes a new friend.
The St. Ignatius Pug Choir
Maximus wonders: "How much longer?".

Meet 'n Greet!

Maximus is DONE!

Today’s blog entry is dedicated to blog regular Lisa R.’s husband.  Well, she’s the regular.  Anyway.  Good luck!



squishy writes: ”

In Ripple Effect (one of my favorite episodes!) when the ‘bad’ SG1 team is leaving, the bad Mitchell turns around before the Stargate puddle and says to the ‘good’ Mitchell: ‘When the time comes, cut the green one’. Enlighten me please?”

Answer: Among the notes I received on the script’s first draft from my fellow writer-producers was a suggestion from Damian Kindler that alt. Mitchell should throw out a cryptic line like: “When the times comes, cut the green one.”.  I loved the idea and put it in the script.  It wasn’t a set-up to any specific pay-off but, having said that, it was something we certainly could have touched on had the show gone another season.

dasndanger writes: “I’ve been meaning to ask how your mom and sister are these days. Are they glad to have you closer to home?”

Answer: They’re all fine.  I’ll be seeing them this Christmas, provided they don’t come up to visit me earlier.

fsmn36 writes: “I wondered about your thoughts on Marvel as a great comic book connoisseur. What were your favorite issues of X-Men (I figure you must have read some at one point)? Did you read the ones written by Joss Whedon? And ultimately…DC or Marvel?”

Answer: My passion for comic books ebbs and flows.  I’ll pick up every title out there, then start dropping them as I lose interest.  Eventually, I’ll drop the last one and go months without buying anything – then go out one day, pick up every title out there, and start over again.  My favorite X-Men were the new incarnation introduced in Uncanny X-Men #94/Giant Size X-Men #1 (well, “new” back then).  My favorite issues = #132-137, the end of the Hellfire Club storyline and the Dark Phoenix saga.  Haven’t checked out Astonishing X-Men yet but have eyed the omnibus.  Recommended?  DC or Marvel?  Depends on who’s writing.  TPB I’m reading now: Chew (Image), The Walking Dead (Image), Scalped (Vertigo), DMZ (Vertigo), Sweet Tooth (Vertigo), Secret Six (DC).

@iom666 writes: “How about cats ? Did you ever have a cat ? What do you think of ‘them’ ? ;)

Answer: I’ve had cats and love ’em as well.

Patricia-Stewart Bertrand writes: “My sister’s dogs are terrified of rain, and thunder and spiders and cats. They are two very large and friendly Border Collies. Any suggestions to help them conquer their fears?”

Answer: Just sit with them, pet them, reassure them.  Having the t.v. on helps as well.

Sebastian Meyer writes: “So you write /block the chase and stunt sequences yourself as the episode’s writer? Not all shows do that. How detailed do you get and did you do the same on Stargate?”

Answer: When writing a script, we do try to craft creative action sequences that will serve as a launch point for our stunt coordinators.  Realistically, they’re only guidelines because, when the time comes, what can or can’t be done will be entirely location dependent.  On Transporter: The Series, for instance, fight coordinator Cyril Raffaelli and car stunt coordinator Michel Julienne will no doubt use the scripted sequences as inspiration, but won’t be beholden to what’s on the page.  So why do we write them into the script?  Well, they do offer some insight into what we are expecting in terms of action.  Also, some people who read scripts have a hard time imagining “the good version”.  If I was to simply write “a car chase ensues and Frank gets away” the response I would no doubt receive would be something alone the lines of: “BOOOORING!  Can’t we come up with something better?”.

Randomness writes: “Have you had a chance to watch Spice and Wolf yet?”

Answer: Not yet.  Season one is sitting in my DVD room back in Vancouver.

Randomness also writes: “Also how are your Japanese skills coming along?”

Answer: Last night, Akemi and I went out to eat.  Over the course of our meal, we conversed in Japanese.  Our waiter marveled at my command of the language. I told him I only sounded proficient because he didn’t understand Japanese.  I possess the verbal skills of a very polite four year old Japanese boy.

Randomness also writes: “Code Geass has 2 movies in Japan on DVD/Blu Ray, they basically cover Season 1 and 2, and have some new footage here and there, they’re Japanese only with no subtitles, but if you want to watch Code Geass abridged, its something you might want to pick up from Japan next to you go Joe.”

Answer: One of Akemi’s favorites.  Already watched!

Randomness also writes: “And lastly any plans to get Chris Vance to do a blog appearance?”

Answer: Would love to have him come by and do a Q&A but, realistically, I don’t think he’ll have the time.  He’s going to be VERY busy.

chupeto writes: “Are the people who made the Ascension (like Alterans, or like the people of Abydos) called : “The Others” or “The Ancients” ?”

Answer: Sorry, I don’t understand the question.  If you’re asking whether all Ascended beings are Ancients, the answer is no.

paloosa writes: “So starting Monday, I’m headed to the Death Valley of the Valley…Woodland Hills. No studios nor even production companies. Despite the name, the Warner Center is just a bunch of boring corporate industrial buildings. I’m happy to still have a job, but it’s three times the mileage, cost and time. And over 100 degrees most of the summer.”

Answer: We’re following parallel paths!  Good luck!

45 thoughts on “June 12, 2011: Bubba update! Ivon Bartok hits Banff! Woofstock! Pugs eating ice cream! Mailbag!

  1. Ah, well done Joe for learning more Japanese, I’m sure you’l get the hang of it with time, I think what helps is the conversation part, you know actively using your brain speaking the language back and forth with someone to pick up the phrases and stuff.

    Anyway, I don’t think I’ve ever asked anime related blog questions but these are more, me wondering your opinion on Code Geass lol

    Here’s a few well not very run of the mill blog questions.

    1. What did you think of Lelouch’s motives for being Zero, were you sold on the whole idea he was doing it purely for Nunnally, or do you think he also did it because he cares about the Japanese people too?

    2. Do you think Lelouch regrets not having a normal life?

    3. Although the series hints at Lelouch having feelings for Kallen during the show, do you think he also loves C.C? Or do you see them more as Comrades?

    4. At the end, when Lelouch gives his life to bring peace to the world, do you think he also did it to atone for what happened with Euphy?

    5. What were your favourite parts from the show?

    Also, personally I think the Black Knights were foolish to give up Lelouch to Britannia so soon, I think they were probably upset that Lelouch didn’t share the information about his Geass to them and wern’t sure where his loyalitys were. I think that likely hurt Lelouch too because Lelouch, though he said otherwise, saw a lot of them as his friends, and pretty much kept them safe from the moment he joined to the moment they ditched him.

  2. “Patricia-Stewart Bertrand writes: “My sister’s dogs are terrified of rain, and thunder and spiders and cats. They are two very large and friendly Border Collies. Any suggestions to help them conquer their fears?”

    Answer: Just sit with them, pet them, reassure them. Having the t.v. on helps as well.”

    I found that playing hide and seek with a toy (or another pleasant activity they enjoy, like brushing them) during storms calms my dogs and doing so in the basement (that has only one small window) during storms cuts down a bit on their storm anxiety. I try to act the same way I usually do, when there is a storm happening, because dogs will pick up on their owner’s anxiousness.

  3. Thanks so much, Joe, and my hubby said to say thank you too. I forwarded it to him. I’ll let everyone know how it goes.

  4. So many pugs, pitbulls and poodles! Lulu and Max are so cute, glad they had a fun day out. Poor Bubba, I hope he’ll get better with rest and a little less pug parkour.

    Ended up doing burgers instead of pierogies yesterday; pulled pork on a juicy burger with mayo and red onions, it was terrific but I couldn’t finish it all.

    Good luck for Ivon at Banff, I’ve always wanted to go there.

  5. Re the Facebook page titled “Stargate SG2″…appears to be a very young high-school teen planning a “fan film” who is blissfully unaware of copyrights and standard fan fiction etiquette such as disclaimers.

  6. Exciting news from Animal Defense League of Texas behavior classes! Sebastian, our shy spaniel mix, suddenly showed interest in toys yesterday! The breakthrough Even surprised the training manager, who works with Sebby daily. Can a forever home be closer than we think?

  7. Patricia-Stewart Bertrand writes: “My sister’s dogs are terrified of rain, and thunder and spiders and cats. They are two very large and friendly Border Collies. Any suggestions to help them conquer their fears?”

    Answer: Just sit with them, pet them, reassure them. Having the t.v. on helps as well.

    When I moved my rat terrier to the coast of the Gulf of Mexico I had this same problem, particularly in the middle of the night in the months between June and November (tropical storm season). What worked in the end was slipping him half a children’s benedryl when the radar turned yellow and sitting with his sedated butt on the floor petting him until the storm was over.

    It took about 3 times but he figured out the big bangy noise wasn’t going to hurt him or me and he never barked or freaked out at thunder again. Then again he is a freakishly smart dog; he can open cans of microwavable soup. We even weathered the outskirts of Hurricane Rita without incident. It’s not an ideal solution but it is certainly effective.

  8. Joe the Woofstock pix are great, definitely two paws up! 🙂 And…strollers, eh? Someone should make carriage miniatures for such royalty! I hope Bubba gets well soon. Cheers!

  9. The recent MW3 vs BF3 stuff reminds me so much of what SGU went through. Same story too, BF3 going mainstream appealing to new fans. And the developers subtly igniting fanboy wars with their comments. same thing.

    Joe, you know what Brad is doing right now? is he working on something?

  10. So, Woodstock festival in Canada is about dogs and not rock-n-roll? Cool! It seems that Max agrees that pugs need strollers. 🙂 Is it just me, or does painting a dog pink (or any color) seem border-line abusive? Same for shaving a dog and drawing spots on it. Poor dogs. Stupid humans. Thanks for the picks and ice cream videos. I have yet to meet a dog that doesn’t like ice cream. I hope Bubba feels better soon.

  11. Good luck, Ivon Bartok!

    I can’t imagine my neighbor’s pit bull w/ a muzzle on. That girl can barely keep a treat in her mouth, the slobber flows so.

  12. Loved the doggie pics! But some of the dogs/owners were a little over the top (leopard spots?????)

    Good luck to Ivon!

    I hope Bubba’s meds do the trick and he is back to his old self soon.

  13. Love,love,love the doggie pictures, you might want to invest in a stroller, just in case. And it looks like they could be pretty high end.customize it and all.
    Congrats to Ivon, good luck.!

  14. Congratulations to the 2011 NBA Champions Dallas Mavericks and the MVP 7′ sick german Dirk Nowitzki!! Woooo whooooo! 😮

    Glad to hear it is nothing too serious with Bubba. He just needs lots of rest, cuddling, and kisses. All the dog pictures are real cute.

    “Patricia-Stewart Bertrand writes: “My sister’s dogs are terrified of rain, and thunder and spiders and cats. They are two very large and friendly Border Collies. Any suggestions to help them conquer their fears?”

    Answer: Just sit with them, pet them, reassure them. Having the t.v. on helps as well.”

    My beagle has no fear. WHAT ABOUT ME! I’m terrified of thunder and lightning and wind. And don’t say take pills or booze. I have to be ready to move, move, move when the roof blows off or lightning strikes the house. The radar turning yellow is nothing. I’m afraid of the radar when it’s solid red with purple, white, and black in it. That means hail and other bad stuff.

    They are starting to run commercials for Conan The Barbarian with Jason Momoa. He looks great. Someone in the movie yelled “Conan!” and I thought they said “Ronon!”. 🙂

    Dallas is getting rowdy…!

  15. glad to hear the problem with Bubba is probably no more severe than a strain. Not a lot of fun for the big guy, but something he should recover from without too much trouble. Loved Woofstock pictures and video. Thank you for sharing. A perfect way to end the day.
    Check out the top video on the site below. Rather cute and it’s fun trying to identify all the clips. And I agree with Plaitt on the sadness of the last clip.


    As far as the language learning goes, do you have a rule on speaking Japanese in the home? As in you must speak Japanese and Akemi English? I know how constant use is critical to retaining and improving speech, and having someone who can converse fluently is a major advantage for you. On another note, will you be doing a Tokyo trip this year, or stay in the east while settling in? Thanks for taking so many pics and posting them, as well as the video.

  16. Actually, comforting an animal during noisy events (thunder, fireworks) assures them there is indeed something to be afraid of. Keep them busy, do obedience, talk in happy tones, but not comfort behaviors. For serious thunder phobias, medication or putting in a crate in the bath tub (they claim it not only muffles sounds but the static vibrations they can pick up). There is now a thunderphobia jacket. It sounds bizarre to me, but a lot of folks swear it helps.

    HAPPY news about Bubba! Whew.

  17. Bubba needs a stroller. Only until he’s better though. Poor guy. I just love the look of those strollers. I wonder if cats would like them? Woofstock looks like a lot of fun.

    Sorry to hear about the new commute paloosa. Woodland Hills is really hot in the summer. Hopefully our summer will be like it was last year: June gloom (this is what Californians call the marine layer that can last all day long) all the way through July and into August.

  18. Blow them away Ivon.

    I’ve gotta catch up with your blog again. I didn’t know Bubba was hurting. Hopefully the metacam will work well.

    The ice cream video is adorable. Thanks for posting the doggie videos. They always make me smile. At one point in the middle one, they look rabid.

    Why is it that retrievers/labs love hot-tub-looking pools. My Maddie in our hot tub: http://www.twitpic.com/50jm7

    About dogs & thunder/lightning, actually the worst thing you can do is pet them. It reinforces the behavior. Here are some good strategies. But the longer you wait, the harder it gets. It’s just like behavior modification we use for Patrick. If you give in just once, you’ll be back to square one. http://www.veterinarypartner.com/Content.plx?P=A&A=1005&S=1&SourceID=60

  19. Not being the world’s greatest “doggie person” I’d probably give Woofstock a miss if I visited Toronto again..however it’s interesting to say the least!

    You might want to check out an old aquaintance who’s coming to Toronto very soon. Michael Shanks is heading East to film a pilot with his old working friend Erica Durance from Smallville – and Stargate – fame.

    Sounds an interesting premise for Michael if the show goes forward and gets picked up…great to see him getting such varied guest roles these days.



  20. Hiya Joe,

    Any chance you tried Uncanny X-Force by Rick Remender, Joe? I find it to be an enjoyable series personally and has an interesting group of Mutants in the team. Plus, it has Deadpool, so… Anyway, any more story elements that you can share on Extinction?

    Also, you mentioned in the Atlantis’s future plotpoints that mysterious allies that were aiding the renewed Wraith presence in the galaxy whilst Atlantis was in a bubble dimension. Were there any discussions on who these allies were? The Daedalus Variation aliens? Someone new?

    Take care!

  21. Coucou! Comment allez vous? Vous avez passé un bon week end!!!!

    Waou tout ces chiens O_O …pourquoi ils étaient tous de sorti? ahaha merci pour les video trop fun!!! GO GO CANUCKS!

    Et vous, quand allez vous créer votre propre compte twitter?

    Aller gros bisou,
    Bonne semaine!

  22. I get the feeling Maximus is the greatest comedic sidekick ever. A source of endless entertainment.

    I wanted to ask, have you been watching AMC’s The Killing? I’ve noticed quite a few actors of Stargate lore on the show. Gary Chalk, Peter Kelamis, Patrick Gilmore and a few more. Thoughts?

  23. @Patricia Stewart-Bertrand: Thanks for posting the video link. It made me laugh, and I needed that this morning.

  24. Awww….hope Bubba’s okay. Doggies!! 😀 Love the doggies! Such cute outfits! 🙂

  25. I felt so much better this morning that I swam 1 mile! It’s going to be a long day. I have to take hubby to the hospital for a Lithotripsy (kidney stone buster). He is not scheduled until 1:30 p.m., so I have all my ebook reader/ipad recharged and ready. I hope the hospital has wifi.

    We had a greyhound at the animal hospital where I used to work. He hated storms. He would just shake and moan. Nothing seemed to work for him but a little valium (when it was very bad).

  26. Joe, thanks for the puppy pics and the update on Bubba. Just a question – are you sure the doggie daycare workers are worthy of your trust? I mean, people abuse children at daycare centers, and so there’s always a risk that the same abusive types could work at an animal daycare center, too.

    In my own ‘news’, I received a wonderful surprise in the mail today! A piece of ORIGINAL Elric artwork, from the very hand of past blog guest, John Picacio!


    (This is a copy from the net, I didn’t want to take the protective wrapping off the sketch to scan it – the only diff is that the sketch is signed. The picture is printed in Swords and Roses, Volume 6 of the Elric series recently published by Del Rey.)

    The sketch is extra-special, and I must think a bit on how to display it so no harm comes to it. It’s so lovely! John is a terrific fella and I’m honored to own a piece of his original art. I wish him all the best!


  27. Hello Joe,
    I loved your work on all of the stargate series. I was wondering, exactly how many seed ships were sent out ahead of the Destiny, and how far ahead are they, and are some of them still installing stargates on new planets?

  28. @ Prior_of_the_Ori – I also recommended that Joe pick up Uncanny X-Force. It is a great book, isn’t it? I appreciate the fact that Deadpool isn’t over-the-top crazy – I actually like the guy in this one. But it’s Fantomex who has stolen my heart – what a great character! Who knew I’d fall for the snotty Frenchman! 🙂 I have to go back and read some of my old New X-Men trades (I believe Fantomex was introduced in that series). I’m glad you’ve backed up my recommendation of this book…now if Joe doesn’t like it he can blame both of us! 😀


  29. Just seen “Gauntlet” here in the UK… wow! Beautiful, action-packed, emotional, and a fantastic final scene as Destiny sails off into the night. My thanks go out to you and all the other talented people who made SGU such a fantastic show. Sci-fi TV will be poorer without Stargate, but thank you for years of adventures.

  30. ” chupeto writes: “Are the people who made the Ascension (like Alterans, or like the people of Abydos) called : “The Others” or “The Ancients” ?”

    Answer: Sorry, I don’t understand the question. If you’re asking whether all Ascended beings are Ancients, the answer is no. ”

    Can I try to clarify? I think I’ve wondered something like this myself. There are references (by Orlin in Fourth Horseman I think) that the “Others” would do things. Does “Others” refer to only the “Ancients” or is the term broader?

    I always got the impression that the “Others” were all those beings who Ascended that agreed with the Ancient philosophy and worked with them, but were not necessarily Ancients/Alterans.

    Also in regards to SGU: Is it reasonable to think that one reason the Destiny was abandoned is because the Ascended Ancients had a much better vantage point (and knowledge) to study the cosmic background radiation from their ascended plane? That is, once they Ascended the destiny was obsolete to them? Or did the Ascended ancients learn the answer to the Destiny’s stated mission when they ascended?

  31. @MNP

    Ancients ascended before they could make use of Destiny, however saying abandoned isnt exactly true as they never actually used the ship after it was launched from Earth, thus it could be classed as unused lol

  32. Oh yeah, another question.

    If someone was to dial the Ori Galaxy from Earth, would they be using a 7 or 8 Chevron address Joe? I dont think it was covered in SG1.

  33. @ Das – both your art pieces are super cool, but I am especially fascinated with the John Picacio sketch. I keep looking at the “scribble” around the figure. There has got to be a hidden message there or words or something. Maybe a story is embedded in there. Very interesting!

  34. @ Ponytail – Yes, there’s something mesmerizing about it. John has some lovely original art from the books, and I wish I could afford some of the larger, more detailed, works, but I can’t. There were a couple smaller ones in my price range, but this is the one I kept coming back to. It’s just so interesting…

    Also, I do keep seeing ‘words’ in the art, like ‘Elric’ in the lower right corner…though I doubt it says Elric at all. It’s just that it gives that illusion, and that’s one of the things I love about it.

    @ Joe – My type isn’t scrolling again in the box. Is it something you have to correct, or me? It was doing so well before, and now after the weekend it’s back to that…

    heeeeeeey….waitaminute! It just started scrolling again! I messed with my scroll lock button…maybe that did the trick (though I have scroll lock off at the moment). Any computer nerds out there who know about this stuff, because – obviously – I’m totally clueless. 😛


  35. @ Randomness

    Well, “abandoned the Destiny’s Mission” rather. But you’re right now that I think about it, it’s possible some of the Destiny’s corridors never new a human footstep until the Icarus refugees arrived.

    Unused used ship.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.