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…to visit Jim Henson’s Creature Shop in July.

I wasn’t allowed to take photos of anything they were currently building (but believe me when I say this: IT WAS ALL AWESOME), but I was allowed to take a few shots of some of the stuff they had scattered around their conference room.

First up, a couple sculptures of Jim.

Some Jim busts.

Next, the eyes and facial animatronics from Carol of Where The Wild Things Are.

Carol's eyes from "Where the Wild Things Are."

These are Jim’s original designs for the creatures of Turkey Hollow.

Jim's "Turkey Hollow" creature designs.

Baby Sinclair from Dinosaurs was there…

Baby Sinclair from "Dinosaurs."

…as was Yolanda from… something.

Yolanda!

But then things got really cool, like this Oscar the Grouch that was one of the originals used on Sesame Street way back in the day.

Oscar the Grouch!

And then there were the Skeksis from The Dark Crystal!

Skeksis!

So…

Skeksis!

…many…

Skeksis!

…awesome…

Skeksis!

…and amazing…

Skeksis!

…Skeksis!

Skeksis!

And finally, in the bathroom, I came across these two signs…

So must guests.

…accompanied by this sitting on the counter.

But not with that.

As a sidenote, I also got to meet Toby Froud, Brian Froud’s son, later that day. All in all, it was a pretty awesome experience.

Hopefully, some day soon I’ll be able to tell you why I was there, which is also an amazing story. Hoping I can share it with you all soon, folks!

Until then,

-Shady

…FROM THE SHADY FAMILY!

2016 pumpkins!

As some of you may know, Grey loves making this scary face.

Grey face!

So we decided it was only appropriate to carve that face into her pumpkin.

Grey pumpkin!

Beth did an awesome carve of the “snake creature” from Beetlejuice. We’ve come for your daughter, Chuck!

"We've come for your daughter, Chuck!"

For her second Halloween costume, Grey decided to go as John Belushi as a Killer Bee from Saturday Night Live. This is keeping with her “going as someone as someone” tradition.

Bee-lushi!

She thinks she pulled it off pretty well…

Grey Bee-lushi!

…and she especially liked her stinger.

Now with more stinger!

KB and I opted for the Martians of Sesame Street.

Sesame Street Martians!

Here we are in action:

Happy Halloween from the Shadys!

The real most wonderful time of the year,

-Shady

I AM A PRINCESS!

…for these sheets of awesome birthday stickers.

They include a ton of poop stickers, “PRINCESS JUSTIN IS TURNING FORTY” stickers, “40 AND STILL SMOKIN’ HOT” stickers, “480 MONTHS” stickers, and stickers with three Muppets and Elmo wishing me a happy birthday on it.

Thanks, guys! A lot of these are already stuck to things.

Sticker sucker,

-Shady

…including this Sesame Street cup from my buddy Salomon…

Sweet gifts!

…this treasure trove of children’s books from Jenna, Kaya, the Cigelskes, the Loars, the Ollenburgs, and Ma Shady…

Sweet gifts!

…and this classic from my Uncle Bob.

Sweet gifts!

What’s that? Those are all for Grey?

Well, hell. Can I at least keep the Man Crate I got from Beth that was filled with sausages, pretzels, mustard…

Sweet gifts!

…and this sweet stein with my name etched into it?

Sweet gifts!

As well as this ceramic gun vase I got from Metcalf…

Sweet gifts!

…and this amazing set of skull plates I got from Du?

Sweet gifts!

Those are all for Grey, too?!?

Man… kids get all the good shit for Christmas.

Santa disappoints,

-Shady

This week, I decided I would no longer be publishing “dead” posts on “The Blarg.”

Over time, I’ve come to feel those posts are too easy. That, and a shitload of people have been dying recently, and I’m nervous of “The Blarg” becoming an obituary site. I decided that the Phyllis Diller post would be the last of its kind; I figured she was a good one to go out on.

And then yesterday, legendary Muppet performer Jerry Nelson died.

So instead of ignoring Nelson’s passing, I’ve decided that every once in awhile, when the situation warrants it, I’ll handle “dead” posts like this.

Nelson was the hands beneath and the voice behind many of the Muppets greatest characters. On “Sesame Street,” he was the Amazing Mumford, Herry Monster, Sherlock Hemlock, Snuffleupagus, and (probably his most well-known character) Count von Count. On “The Muppet Show,” he was Robin the Frog, Camilla the Chicken, Dr. Julius Strangepork, Uncle Deadly, Lew Zealand, and (my personal favorite) Sgt. Floyd Pepper. And for “Fraggle Rock” fans, he was Gobo.

Nelson was a Muppet original. Sadly, there aren’t very many of them left.

Back in December 2001, some friends, my sister (to be clear, my sister is also my friend) and I had an opportunity to meet Jerry at a Muppet convention in Los Angeles. (Don’t judge us!) It was very brief, but at the end of it I got an autograph from him. That’s somewhere in a box back in Los Angeles (I’m writing this from San Francisco), otherwise I’d scan it and show it to you guys.

But who needs an autograph when I’ve got a little piece of Jerry Nelson right here on my arm?

That sounded gross, but you understand what I mean.

Every time one of the Muppet Men go it bums me out, and Jerry Nelson was one of the best. The Muppets were different after Jim Henson and Richard Hunt died. Somehow, today, the Muppets are different than they were yesterday.

He’ll be missed.

One! One amazing performer! Ha-ha-ha,

-Shady

PS: Listen to Jerry doing the Count on this commercial.

…for this “OC Weekly” article.

Doo doo doo-doo-doo,

-Shady

Learn more here.

Not as creepy as I expected,

-Shady

…no kidding.

Last November, I wrote Caroll Spinney a quick letter to thank him for contributing to such a large part of my childhood. For those of you who don’t know, Spinney has portrayed numerous characters on “Sesame Street” for the show’s past 41 seasons. He’s best known for his work as both Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch.

Last weekend, I opened our mailbox to find this envelope (click on all images for larger versions):

Inside the envelope, I found this two-page letter:

As well as this original illustration:

Spinney is also an accomplished artist; he illustrated numerous Sesame Street books throughout his career.

So yeah… that was pretty awesome.

Learn more about Caroll Spinney here.

I even get the Eminem joke from Big Bird,

-Shady

…with a guest appearance from… wait for it!

So good,

-Shady

Old Poop!