Home   •   Films   •   TV Series   •   Everything Else   •   Store   •   Search   •   Credits/Legal   •   Help   •   E-Mail   •   The Corner Penthouse

Tags: hurricane-sandy

Hurricane Sandy - Destroyed East Rockaway House Demolished

PermalinkBy Paul Rudoff on Mar. 10, 2017 at 11:26 PM , Categories: Personal , Tags: hurricane-sandy
Updated on November 6, 2017

UPDATE - In an effort to make the photo documentation of the house trips easier to find, here are the quick links to all Facebook photo galleries about the East Rockaway house.

Thu. March 9, 2017
Tue. May 30, 2017
Fri. June 9, 2017
Wed. June 14, 2017
Wed. August 23, 2017
Mon. November 6, 2017

Read more »

Leave a comment »

Hurricane Sandy Recovery/Spook Central Status Update

PermalinkBy Paul Rudoff on Jun. 24, 2013 at 4:27 PM , Categories: Personal, Spook Central , Tags: hurricane-sandy

For those of you who haven't been playing along at home... Hurricane Sandy flooded my home of 23 years in East Rockaway, Long Island, New York with five feet of water on October 29, 2012. As a result, my family had to spend six weeks in the Red Cross Emergency Shelter at Nassau Community College, before we found a new place to live in a neighboring town. We've now been living here over six months, and although we are settled in, we've not yet 100% recovered from the storm. I felt it was best to post a status update to let everyone know what's going on with my hurricane recovery and with Spook Central. Click on any of the bold "titles" to go to a blog page with more details; or feel free to check out all of the hurricane blog posts. I've also put up a quick link box in the upper right corner of the blog.

Old East Rockaway House - Since I went back to check the place out on April 10th, I've been documenting what's going on there. The house is still there, but part of the ceiling in two rooms has collapsed. That's in addition to all of the buckled floors, mold, and so forth that's been there since the beginning of November. Our old landlord is trying to sell the property (he apparently has a bidder), and I assume that the new owner will knock the house down, raise the ground up, and build a new house there. I'll keep going back every two months to document the progress until a new house is built there. I may one day comb through the family photos (most of which survived) and the family home movie VHS tapes (most of which did NOT survive) and put together an article on the evolution and devolution of the house in the 23 years I lived there and the year or so that followed.

Salvaging Project - I stopped worked on this at the end of February so I could take care of the computer. Thanks to the problems with that (detailed further down this page), I have not been able to go back to working on this. Thankfully, there's nothing soaking wet left to deal with, but there is still a lot of damaged stuff I have in bags. There are HUNDREDS of flood-damaged media (Blu-rays, DVDs, CDs, PS1/PS2/PS3 games, computer games) that I have to try to salvage. Cases and artwork (and game manuals) are trashed, for the most part, but the discs are fine (except for a small handful). They just need to be cleaned with some disc wipes. A time-consuming job, but not hard. A few family photo albums got damaged, and I'm not sure if the photos inside will be salvageable. I would bet that my grade school and high school yearbooks (signed by my classmates) and diplomas are even less likely to be salvageable. The same is undoubtedly true for birthday books and other paper personal mementos. I don't even know if there's any way to salvage the home movie (and Real Ghostbusters) VHS tapes. I'm hoping Nora & Doreen from the defunct Ghostbusters Fan Forum can help with the Real Ghostbusters VHS tapes (these contained the redubbed and other alternate episodes not in the TimeLife DVD set), but no one can replace the home movies. If those VHS tapes can't be salvaged, those memories are gone forever. (We also have to go through all of the boxes of undamaged stuff to see what can come out, what has to stay in storage, and what we may want to donate. We had a lot more room in the old house, so there's a lot of stuff we won't have room for anymore.)

Computer (and Spook Central) Recovery - This is the area that's caused all of the problems over the past four months, and it's why I wish the hurricane didn't damage my old computer. From October 29, 2012 to January 31, 2013 my only "computer" was an iPod Touch I kept in my pocket while living at the emergency shelter. Thank goodness I had the foresight to take it when we evacuated. An iPod Touch is *NOT* an ideal computing device (having to rely on it for so long gives me a deeper hatred for Apple), and internet access on it is only as good as where ever I could get a free wifi signal (which was *VERY* limited at the shelter), but it was certainly better than nothing. Somehow I doubt "Apple: It's better than nothing" is gonna be the company's next tagline :-) Anyway, I digress...

On January 31st a charitable organization gave me a free computer. The computer works - I'm typing this message on it - but the hardware inside is too old for it to be anything more than an emergency computer. (I've been calling it a "temporary" computer on my computer recovery blog post.) I found a local mom & pop shop here in Valley Stream called Coast To Coast Computers, and on March 11th, I placed an order with them for a custom-built computer near-identical to the one the hurricane destroyed. It cost me $312 for the computer and $100 for the monitor. After FOUR WEEKS of giving me the runaround, and boldly lying to me (you can read all of the sordid details on the computer recovery blog post), the computer was ready for pickup on April 9th. I thought that would have been the end of the matter, but it was only a new beginning of problems.

For starters, I was under the impression that I was buying a custom-built computer assembled with 100% brand new parts that were going to be bought in bulk via OEM channels. What I received was a *USED* computer which is NOT a custom-build, but actually a nearly completely pre-assembled Hewlett-Packard (HP) computer originally designed for use in a business environment. All the computer shop did was swap out the hard drive for two larger ones, install Windows XP Pro on one of them (HP had Vista Business on it), and add in a 1GB PCI-E video card. None of that takes four weeks to do.

HP *PROPRIETARILY-DESIGNED* this system so that it's very user-UNfriendly. There's no reset button on the front, and there's no on/off switch on the power supply on the back. The case opens on the right, while normal cases open on the left. Metric screws are used throughout, instead of the common Phillips-head (or flathead) screws. HP designed the case to be "tool-less", but HP was rather clueless, and a bit foolish, since it actually makes things harder on the user. I had to make several trips back to the computer shop to pick up these "special" metric screws so I could install the Blu-ray drive, the floppy drive, and the video capture card's front panel.

I was willing to put up with this "new" computer being used, and all of HP's proprietarily-designed bull, but what would happen next made this computer unusable. I copied all of my files over to the new computer, installed all of my programs, everything was going smoothly. One day, out of the clear blue, on every boot it started giving me an "512 - Rear Chassis Fan Not Detected" error message, requiring me to press F1 to continue booting, even though the chassis fan runs at full speed nearly *ALL* the time. I think it's even louder than my new air conditioner! I would bet that the only way to fix the computer would be to send it in to HP, and they already told me that the warranty expired on February 15, 2012 - over a year *before* I bought the computer.

As if all of that crap wasn't enough, around the end of May, Windows decided to no longer provide the internet. I was using my SeaMonkey browser to surf the web, closed the browser, and less than a minute later, I decided to run it again to look something up. Imagine my surprise when SeaMonkey couldn't go online anymore. Internet Explorer was able to go to Google *once*, but upon a re-run, even IE lost access. The "Network Diagnostics for Windows XP" program claimed it "detected a problem with the Winsock provider catalog" which "allows programs to communicate with this computer across the network", but its "fix" (resetting the catalog to the default configuration and then rebooting) didn't fix the problem. I suppose, worst case, I could get internet access back by re-installing Windows, but that still wouldn't solve the fan issue.

All of those problems have forced me to switch BACK from using the "new" computer I bought from Coast To Coast to the "temporary" computer that the charitable organization gave me. I recently noticed that NewEgg and/or Tiger Direct (two online computer parts stores) have bundles where you can buy all (or some) of the parts and assemble the computer yourself. Although I've never put a computer together, and am a little scared to try it, I'm starting to think I may have to go that route and hope for the best. I think that's my best option right now for getting a computer that 100% suits my needs...and hopefully won't give me any problems.

Right now I can't even deal with that, as I'm halfway in to a 30-day free trial of PlayStation Plus, which gives me a dozen free games to play as long as I'm a member. Since I have no interest in paying for the service past the 30 days, I need to *attempt* to play and complete 11 more full games before July 12th. Once that is done with, then I'll try to motivate myself to get my computer issues resolved completely, finish the salvaging project, and finish going through the boxes in storage in the attic. Then I can focus my attention back on my usual online activities - you know, like scanning in those scripts and books :-)

I actually thought I would be able to make my official return at the beginning of April when I got the "new" computer. I didn't know at the time that the computer shop boss would lie to me about a few things, and that the computer I'd be getting from them isn't what I thought I'd be getting, and that it would cause me all of these problems. I even managed to pull of an April Fool's Day prank (on the "temporary" computer) and uploaded the new Spook Central Staff page. I was planning on mentioning the new staff when I made my official return, and then have them start making regular non-hurricane posts after that. Right now we'll hold off on any non-hurricane posts here for the time being. I'll keep Spook Central in suspended animation, sort of speak, though I'll definitely post an unusual holiday song in December. Although I hope to make my official return before then, I'm gonna err on the safe side and plan to be at that stage (aka "back to normal") by the beginning of next year. My family should be on a new lease by then (our one-year lease expires in December), so that'll definitely ease my mind that I won't be moving again any time soon.

Just because the Spook Central website isn't being updated much, doesn't mean there isn't anything going on. The SPOOK CENTRAL FACEBOOK PAGE is CONSTANTLY UPDATED by staff member Matthew Jordan (DevilManOzzy from the Ghostbusters Wiki) with all of the latest news and previews of the IDW Ghostbusters comic book series, and other little bits and bobs. I even pop in there from time to time to post something. The Spook Central Facebook Page is definitely the place to be!

As for me, tomorrow's my birthday, so I'm taking some time off. If you want to get me a present, my Amazon Wish List is still valid; and some money via PayPal is always good. (I'm reusing my Hurricane Recovery Donation button for that previous link.) I'll resume tackling everything in July (hopefully), and all future detailed updates regarding the computer, the salvaging project, and the old East Rockaway house will be posted on the respective blog pages.

(Banner Image Source: BethelBulletin.com)

Hurricane Sandy - My Eternal Gratitude Goes To...

PermalinkBy Paul Rudoff on May. 31, 2013 at 5:00 PM , Categories: Personal , Tags: hurricane-sandy

I give my eternal gratitude to the following individuals and companies who helped me and my family in our Hurricane Sandy recovery efforts. Some helped by running my websites in my absence and spreading the word of my plight. Others helped me and my family financially (donations are still welcome) or helped replace items that were damaged by the flood waters.

I truly appreciate all of the support everyone has given me, financially, physically, emotionally, and otherwise. I like to publicly acknowledge all of the support given to me as it's the least I can do to show my thanks. That said, if anyone that I've publicly thanked does not want to be publicly thanked, just let me know. I respect the privacy of others.


Matthew Jordan - for helping me to get messages out about my plight while my family and I were living for six weeks in a Red Cross emergency shelter, and updating the Spook Central site and Facebook page when I couldn't do it myself for lack of a computer and a home.

Doreen Mulman - for the donation of $50 and for helping me to get messages out about my plight while my family and I were living for six weeks in a Red Cross emergency shelter.

Raffaele Ruffaldi - for helping me to update the Spook Central site when I couldn't do it myself for lack of a computer and a home.

Robert Als - for helping me and my family to move what little undamaged belongings we had in the old house into our new house.

Alim Gafar - for helping me and my family to move what little undamaged belongings we had in the old house into our new house.

Dan Schoening - for the donation of $350 as a result of a special Ghostbusters #9 comic book he auctioned off to raise money for me and my family. (Thanks also to Tristan Boutros for placing the winning bid on that comic.)

Katrina Lynn and all of the guys and gals from EctoCon - for the donation of $128 as a result of eight donated items auctioned off at the EctoCon 2012 event to raise money for me and my family.

Chad Paulson - for the donation of $150.

Randy Baer (aka RD Reynolds) - for the new copies of the "WrestleCrap: The Very Worst of Pro Wrestling", "The WrestleCrap Book of Lists!", and "The Death of WCW - 10th Anniversary Edition" books (all signed) to replaced the unsigned copies that were destroyed by the flood; and the new copies of the various Wrestlecrap DVD sets (with autographed case liner) to replace the autographed Worst of RD Reynolds DVD liner that was destroyed by the flood.


TimeLife - for the new copy of The Real Ghostbusters Complete Series DVD box set (Steelbook edition) to replace the one that was damaged by the flood. (Thanks specifically to Jeff Peisch, head of video)

MPI Media Group - for the new The Beverly Hillbillies: The Ultimate Collection, Vol. 1 and Vol. 2 case art, liner books, and cases to replace the ones that were damaged by the flood. (The discs were fine, but everything else was trashed.)

Capcom - for the new copy of Dead Rising 2: Off The Record (PS3) to replace the one that was damaged by the flood, plus the bonus DR2:OTR "I Got Probed In Uranus Zone" purple alien t-shirt. (Thanks specifically to Alicia Kim, Senior Director of PR and Community)

Electronic Arts - for the new copies of these PlayStation 2 video games to replace the ones that were damaged by the flood: The Godfather (Limited Edition)(2 Discs), James Bond 007 in Agent Under Fire, Mercenaries 2: World In Flames, and The Simpsons Game. (Thanks specifically to Crystal Clark from the Customer Relations department)

Ubi Soft - for the new copies of these video games to replace the ones that were damaged by the flood: Large Winch .// Commando Sar (PS1) and Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell (PS2); plus the bonus Splinter Cell games: Blacklist (PS3), Pandora Tomorrow (PS2), Chaos Theory (PS2), and Double Agent (PS2). (Thanks specifically to Dave from the Support department)

D3Publisher - for the new copy of Flushed Away (PS2) to replace the one that was damaged by the flood; plus the bonus games: Puzzle Quest: Challenge of the Warlords (PS2), Astro Boy (PS2), Despicable Me (PS2), Turbo: Super Stunt Squad (PS3), Ben 10 Omniverse (PS3), Ben 10 Galatic Racing (PS3), and Rise of the Guardians (PS3). (Thanks specifically to Michael Cerven, Publicity Manager)

TNA Wrestling - for the new copies of these DVDs to replace the ones that were damaged by the flood: TNA Hard Justice 2005, TNA Genesis 2006, TNA Final Resolution 2007, TNA Hardcore Justice 2010, Best of the Bloodiest Brawls: Vol. 1, Best of the Bloodiest Brawls: Scars and Stitches, Sting: Return of an Icon, and The Best of Raven: Nevermore (2 Discs). Also, for the authentic hand-signed promo photos of these wrestling personalities to replace the ones that were damaged by the flood: Dixie Carter (personalized), Robbie E., Gunner, Bully Ray, Devon, Kurt Angle, James Storm, Velvet Sky, Chavo Guerrero Jr., Jeff Hardy (facepaint), Jeff Hardy (2 copies), and Christy Hemme (7 copies). (Thanks specifically to Claire Surratt Francis, Licensing Manager)

World Wrestling Entertainment - for the new DVD of WWE Night of Champions 2008 to replace the one that was damaged by the flood; the new DVDs of the movies Legendary and Knucklehead to replace the Blu-ray versions that were damaged by the flood; and the bonus DVDs: WWE Extreme Rules 2013, The Ladder Match 2: Crash and Burn (3 discs), WCW War Games: WCW's Most Notorious Matches (3 discs), Legends of Mid-South Wrestling (3 discs), The Best of WWE at Madison Square Garden (3 discs), ECW Unreleased Vol. 2 (3 discs), and Legends of Wrestling Collection: Lawler & JYD/Flair & Slaughter/Heatseekers - only the latter of which did I already own. (Thanks specifically to Sue Aitchison, Director of Community Relations)

Sony Computer Entertainment America - for the new copies of these video games to replace the ones that were damaged by the flood: MotorStorm (PS3), Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception (PS3), Twisted Metal: Head On (Extra Twisted Edition) (PS2), The Getaway: Black Monday (PS2), Ratchet & Clank: Up Your Arsenal (PS2), Ratchet: Deadlocked (PS2), and Secret Agent Clank (PS2); plus the bonus Hot Shots Golf 3 (PS2) game (HSG Fore was the one that got damaged). (Thanks specifically to Jennifer Clark, Senior Director of Public Relations)

Crystal Dynamics - for the new copies of these video games to replace the ones that were damaged by the flood: Tomb Raider: Legend (PS2) and Tomb Raider III (PS1); plus the bonus copy of Tomb Raider (2013) for Xbox 360 (though I don't have that system), the Art of Tomb Raider mini-book and "Protective Survival Pouch" (both from the Collector's/Survival Editions of the game), and the Tomb Raider metal bottle opener/keychain. (Thanks specifically to Meagan Marie, Community & Communication Manager; and Justin Kranzl from Square-Enix's public relations department)

Namco/Bandai - for the new PS3 video games: Armored Core: Verdict Day, Dark Souls, InVersion, Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 3 Full Burst, Ridge Racer: Unbounded, and Soul Calibur V. They didn't have any of the ruined games, but they were kind enough to send me these bonus games, which I greatly appreciate. (Thanks specifically to Nick O'Leary from the Public Relations department)

Rockstar Games / 2K Games - for the new copies of these video games to replace the ones that were damaged by the flood: Family Guy Video Game (PS2), Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories (PS2), Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories (PS2), Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas (PC). Also the PC copies of Bully (Scholarship Edition) and Starsky & Hutch, which kinda replace the ruined PS2 copies. (Bully PC has more content than PS2 so it's actually an upgrade - just on a different system.) Also the PS2 Greatest Hits releases of Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas and Grand Theft Auto Double Pack (III/Vice City), which kinda replace the ruined PS2 Original versions. Plus the bonus PS3 games: Grand Theft Auto V, Max Payne 3, 2K Rogues And Outlaws Collection 3-Pack (Spec Ops: The Line/Borderlands 2/Mafia II), 2K Power Pack 3-Pack (Darkness II/Bioshock 2/Mafia II), Midnight Club: Los Angeles, L.A. Noire, and NBA 2K14. In addition to the games, they also sent along a Characters of Grand Theft Auto V Sticker Pack, two Grand Theft Auto V/Five Logo Keychains, and a whole bunch of t-shirts: Rockstar - Mason-Style Switchblades & Needles (dark grey) (medium), Grand Theft Auto: Vice City 10th Anniversary - Logo (black) (medium), (2) Grand Theft Auto: Vice City 10th Anniversary - Infernus (light blue/purple) (medium), Grand Theft Auto V/Five Logo (black) (medium), San Andreas Federal Reserve System (light green) (large), Los Santos (white) (large), and Los Santos (black) (large). Click on the previous links to buy your own shirts via Rockstar's online store (all but the San Andreas Federal Reserve System shirt are available there). (Thanks specifically to Bella Benson and Adam Perry, whose names were on the two packages I magically received the day after I sent my last ditch effort mass e-mail)

Activision - for the new copies of these PS2 video games to replace the ones that were damaged by the flood: Shrek 2, True Crime: New York City; plus the bonus copy of Call of Duty: Ghosts (PS3). Also, thanks to GameStop (whom Activision contacted for additional help) for the new DISC ONLY copies of these PS2 video games to replace the ones that were damaged by the flood: Over The Hedge, X-Men: The Official Game; plus the bonus Harry Potter Baggage Cart Lego Mini-Kit, and the Star Trek U.S.S. Enterprise Kre-O Mini-Kit (photos of the GameStop items are below). (Thanks specifically to Mike Mantarro from the Public Relations department for really going above and beyond the call of duty - pun intended - for tracking down copies of the PS2 games, and contacting Jackie Smith [public relations] and Sarah Trigg [Corporate Giving and Community Relations Coordinator] at GameStop for an assist)

Highspots - for selling me at cost ($2 for the discs only, plus $3 shipping) the 2-DVD set "The Best & Worst of Alexis Laree: The Making of Mickie James", and the free "Wendi Richter Shoot Interview" (January 2005 at WrestleReunion) disc, to replace the discs that were damaged by the flood (the Wendi disc was rendered unplayable); though I wish he would have also sent new DVD liners to replace the wrinkled and warped ones the hurricane left me with.

(Banner Image Source: BethelBulletin.com)
Leave a comment »

Hurricane Sandy - Destroyed East Rockaway House Updates

PermalinkBy Paul Rudoff on Apr. 10, 2013 at 11:00 PM , Categories: Personal , Tags: hurricane-sandy
Updated on March 10, 2017

UPDATE - In an effort to make the photo documentation of the house trips easier to find, here are the quick links to all Facebook photo galleries about the East Rockaway house. The November 2, 2012 gallery is NEW (posted July 17, 2013), as I have finally decided to make public all of the photos I took on that first visit back to the house after the storm. Previously, only four of these photos were made public.

Fri. November 2, 2012 (first visit to the house since the storm)
Wed. April 10, 2013 (first time inside the house since Jan. 22nd)
Mon. May 27, 2013
Fri. June 28, 2013
Fri. September 13, 2013
Fri. November 8, 2013 (high resolution)
Fri. May 23, 2014
Fri. March 13, 2015
Wed. June 10, 2015
Wed. October 14, 2015
Wed. December 7, 2016

Read more »


Hurricane Sandy Dan Schoening Charity Cover Revealed

PermalinkBy Paul Rudoff on Mar. 25, 2013 at 11:30 PM , Categories: Personal, Books , Tags: hurricane-sandy
Back in November of last year, as I was languishing away in a Red Cross emergency shelter, due to my family's home of 23 years being taken away from us by Hurricane Sandy, several Ghostheads put forth charitable efforts to help me in my time of need. One of these fine folks was renowned artist "Dapper" Dan Schoening.

As mentioned in the blog posts here and here, which were posted on Spook Central in my absence, Dan auctioned off a copy of IDW's Ghostbusters #9 RIB variant, with the winner getting to decide what Dan would draw on that blank cover. This was significant for the fact that all of the other hand-drawn covers for this issue were drawn by Tristan Jones - including the one I bought for Spook Central. This would be the only one to be drawn by Dan Schoening.

The eBay auction ended on (or about) November 16, 2012. The book sold for $380 with 32 bids; which was $350 after eBay fees. The winner of the auction was Tristan Boutros, who had Dan draw one of the most awesome covers I have ever seen for the entire Ghostbusters series. I dare anyone to try to name everyone that appears on the cover.

[UPDATE - Mrmichaelt commented below that the entities seen on the cover are Slimer, Sandman, Wat, Samhain, Grundel, Hob Anagarak, Boogieman, Zunk, Slug, Snarg, and the Big with Mean Teeth Ghost from The Real Ghostbusters intro sequence. Plus the blaster chair from Kenner's Ecto-1 toy is on the roof of the car, and the firehouse is in the background, of course. Tristan himself commented that the people in/on Ecto-1 are himself (the Ray lookalike), his wife (the Agent Ortiz lookalike), and his son (the boy on the roof).]

I'd like to express my eternal gratitude to Dan Schoening and Tristan Boutros, for helping me and my family. Mere words can't express how I truly feel.


While I'm on the subject of IDW comic book covers...

A few months ago I asked my long-time friend Doreen Mulman for a favor, since she knows voice artists Tara Strong (Kylie in Extreme Ghostbusters) and Laura Summer (first Janine in The Real Ghostbusters). Doreen, with a big assist from our mutual friend Nora Salisbury, managed to make it happen! And what, you may ask, was that favor? Well, take a look for yourself...



It's okay to be jealous :-)

[UPDATE - 3/26/2013]
The two signed comics arrived in the mail today. They are even more beautiful than they are in the photos seen above (taken by Doreen before she sent them out). I couldn't help but also notice how fitting it is that (A) there's a Real Ghostbusters back-up story in the book (though Janine isn't in Part 1), and (B) there's an ad for the My Little Pony: Twilight Sparkle mini-series in the back of the book (Tara voices Twilight Sparkle on the television series My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic).

:: Next >>

Established August 1996

In Loving Memory of Joel Richard Rudoff (July 28, 1944 - January 20, 2014)

In Loving Memory of Linda Joyce Rudoff (July 12, 1948 - November 29, 2015)

Doreen Mulman (May 22, 1961 - March 14, 2014)


GB Reboot Facebook
GB News
Proton Charging
GB Fans
Ghostbusters Mania
Ghostbusters Wiki

GB Fans


Paul's For Sale/Trade List

Ghostbusters Ecto-Web

The Art Of Tristan Jones

Ghostbusters Merch at Amazon.com

User tools

XML Feeds


powered by b2evolution free blog software