When your PopCulteer gets buried under outside deadlines and commitments, it’s handy to have nearly eighteen year’s worth of blog archives to plunder. Today is one of the days when I need to do that. We’re going back ten years, to a post that included a preview of the JoeLanta toy convention that Mel and I were heading to that year. It was only our second time there, but in the years since we’ve made it to most of them, and when JoeLanta became ToyLanta, we went to that when we could make our schedules work.

We’re missing ToyLanta this year, but it happens in just a couple of weeks, so if you can make it to Atlanta on the weekend of March 22, head on over for one of the biggest toy conventions in the country. You can find all the details at their website.

But now, go back in time ten years with me, as we relive edited highlights of a post from March 7, 2014…

The PopCulteer
March 7, 2014

Next week your PopCulteer is going on a big road trip, so this week we’re going to clear the decks and drop in a whole bunch of short, random items.


The main part of the aforementioned road trip sees us heading to Atlanta where for the second year in a row, I will be one of the many guests at the Joelanta convention, a gathering for fans of the original GI Joe, who turns fifty this year. I made a pretty big deal out of it last year, when I got to attend for the first time.  New for 2014 is the simultaneous Great Atlanta Toy Convention, which will be happening at the same time and location March 15 & 16 at Marriott Century City right off Interstate 85 in Atlanta.

I’m really looking forward to this since it’s my second trip to a big GI Joe convention and this year, if our technology holds up, we will be sort of live blogging from Atlanta.

That will also include telling you about “The Walking Dead” day trip that we’re taking to the city where they filmed the Woodbury sequences. If all goes as planned, we will at least have a photo essay of that in next week’s PopCulteer. And if everything goes perfectly, I will return from Atlanta with a Bulletman action figure. That’s him at the left.

You can expect an overload of coverage of our Atlanta trip in PopCult over the next two weeks. I have cobbled together a Frankensteined laptop that should give me full access to PopCult and social media while we’re down there.  If all goes well, we will be bringing you video of panels, photo essays, highlights of the dealer’s tables and dioramas and music from the band, Radio Cult.

 Radio Free Charleston

Don’t let all this toy talk give you the idea that we are neglecting Radio Free Charleston. We will deliver episode 197 on Monday and we have an epic lineup of musicians in store. The plan is to bring you Dina Hornbaker, recorded at Third Eye Cabaret, plus Project Biscotti and Jordan Searls, recorded at the rock and roll theater at Kanawha Players last week. We don’t want to jinx it, but if all goes well Friday night we will also be bringing you the return of two musical acts who haven’t been on Radio Free Charleston for more than five years.

Direct TV Diaries, Part 3

It’s been two months since I broke loose from the shackles of Suddenlink and switched to DirectTV. I am still paying seventy dollars less per month. I am still getting a much superior high-definition signal and many, many, many more channels.

However, I have to be honest. I have had two outages due to snow. Each one was resolved in five minutes after the snow was knocked off the satellite dish. Meanwhile, my friends who still have Suddenlink have reported multiple outages that lasted several hours.

I sort of hate that I’m sounding so much like a shill for DirectTV. To be honest, I’m sort of angry at myself for not making the switch years ago when Suddenlink started slipping in hefty price hikes at least twice a year. I now get every channel on every television. I don’t have to pay a huge amount of money for extra high definition receivers and I don’t have to see those godawful locally produced cable commercials.

This honeymoon shows no sign of ending. 

That’s it for this week’s PopCulteer. Check back over the weekend and all next week for all our regular features, plus a bunch of reports from the road.

Updates for this post: JoeLanta became ToyLanta (which as mentioned above is just a couple of weeks away), but a couple of years ago, JoeLanta was spun off into a separate show, which will happen in October this year. Radio Cult still plays at both shows. Radio Free Charleston jumped back to radio on The AIR, and can be heard every Tuesday, with links right here in PopCult.  I am still with DirecTV, and am happy with the service, but may switch at some point if a less expensive option presents itself.  Suddenlink has become Optimum, but they show no signs of ever being a less expensive option.