Chicago Geek Guy

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Tag: Trinrri



“It’s not ‘Bandfic’,” she exclaims, her hands raising up and down in that gesture of tweenage exasperation. “It’s Bandom.”

“OK, I got it,” I assure her. “So what’s bandom?

“A type of fandom devoted to bands.”

I raise an eyebrow, waiting for more.

“My bandom is affectionately nicknamed The Emo Quartet. Which consists of….”

“Panic at the Disco, Fall Out Boy, My Chemical Romance, and Twenty-One Pilots?” She nods her head in response. I kind of like the music my daughter plays as she bops around the house.

“Yep. But Twenty-One Pilots fics are really rare. So sometimes it’s the Emo Trinity.”

“Gotcha,” I say with a nod.

“There’s also Halsey, and everyone in my bandom loves her, but she’s not in my group.” The words start falling out of her mouth a little more quickly and she starts pacing by the table. “I’m not sure why she isn’t in my group. I mean everyone thinks she’s wonderful, but I think the reason might be because nobody knows how to say ‘five.'”

“It’s ‘quintet.'”

“Oh,” she plows on, seemingly unsure of any knowledge her father might have just passed on. “There’s also, for example, One Direction and 5 Seconds of Summer bandoms as well,” Trinity continues.

“Most members of a bandom have a Tumblr devoted to their bands. They post pictures of the band, usually. Some write fanfiction.”

“OK, wait a second,” I interject. “Is a bandom the actual band, a group of fans, or an individual fan?”

“It’s a group of fans and sometimes the groups don’t mix. Like, nobody wants to talk to the 5 Seconds of Summer bandom. Most of the 5 Seconds of Summer bandom is like, really stupid.” She takes a breath to calm herself. “They call it Punk. It’s really not Punk.”

Punk means The Sex Pistols, The Clash, and The Ramones, to me. Trinity’s favorite band is Green Day. I trust her judgement about what constitutes Punk. “Tell me about fanfic.”

“There are two types of bandfic,” my blue haired daughter begins to explain.

“Hey! You told me it wasn’t bandfic.”

Trinity smiles, patiently. Apparently explaining this whole thing to someone not in the know resembles trying to teach a dog about physics. “Bandfic is a subsect of bandom. Bandom is the whole thing.” I nod, not willing to say something and risk a dismissive eye roll.

Forecasting the future of one of Trin's favorite bands.

Forecasting the future of one of Trin’s favorite bands.

“There are two types of bandfic,” she continues. “AU and Normal. Most people write AU, or alternate universe, stories. Normal is hard to explain so let’s stick to AU.” Apparently, I’ve exhausted her willingness to explain things to an old guy, hip as I may be.

“In AU, a multiple of things can happen. The stories I see most often are a band 1) in high school or college, 2) as vampires(!), and 3) something called Character X Reader. The high school stories have the members react with each other at that age. Vampires is pretty obvious. Character X Reader is when the author interacts with the band members. It’s not like people write fics for fun. They write it for the ships!”

I fight the urge to interject, to try to regain some measure of cool capital with my daughter by knowing what ‘shipping’ means. I just keep on listening.

“Shipping is when you like the idea of two character in a relationship. It can be a friendly relationship, but really,” she flips her bangs off of her forehead, “who are we kidding? One example and a very, very popular ship in my bandom is Ferard, the shipping of Frank and Gerard from My Chemical Romance.”

Pete looked longingly at Mikey.

Pete looked longingly at Mikey.


I pause for a moment, wondering how much I really want to know about what my daughter is reading online at age twelve. Then I think about what I was reading at that age and get over it.

“Another term around shipping is OTP, One True Pairing, or OT3, with three people. Basically, it’s like your favorite pairing. My personal OTP is Petekey, the shipping of Fall Out Boy’s Pete Wentz and My Chemical Romance’ Mikey Way.”

I swallow, nod, and smile, thinking that my quota of interesting things I’ve learned about my daughter has been filled for the day.

Iron Man + Bondo + Paint = Deathstroke!

I am blessed with a child who enjoys cosplay. For Anime Midwest 2014, we decided on going as a father/child pair. After looking at a few options, we decided to go as Deathstroke and his daughter, Ravager, from DC Comics. I knew that if I could get the mask right for Deathstroke, I would be in good shape for the costume.

After cruising through the wealth of information YouTube offers on cosplay, I decided to build out the mask using a plastic Iron Man costume piece as a base. I planned to take the mask, use Bondo to mold it the shape I wanted, sand it down, and then paint it up. In this case, the simplicity of the execution actually matched the design. I couldn’t argue with the cost, either. Excluding the Dremel tool, construction of the mask cost less than $30US.

To make this Deathstroke mask, I used:

  • Marvel Iron Man 3 ARC FX Mask
  • Bondo All Purpose General Putty
  • Putty knife
  • Sandpaper, medium and fine grade (a Dremel tool can help with sanding, a lot)
  • Masking tape
  • Paper, pencils, and scotch tape for stencils
  • Black elastic, ¾” wide x 12″
  • Spray paint: Safety orange, flat black
  • Modeling paint: Flat white
  • Screen repair kit
  • 2″ x 2″ slip of cardstock
  • Hot glue and gun
  • Plastic bag
  • Scissors

Before jumping into the process, I want to note a few things about working with Bondo. Bondo is a product line of putties and fillers created by 3M. Originally used to repair cars, the brand has expanded to a multitude of uses: wood filler, fiberglass, and adhesives. I used Bondo All Purpose General Putty for the mask. It hardens to a very paintable gray color and was easy to shape and sand.

Bondo gives off some heavy fumes. I recommend working in a well ventilated area while using the putty. A pair of latex gloves will prevent the material from sticking to fingers. How long Bondo takes to harden depends on the temperature and humidity of the workplace. I had much more time to fill gaps and holes on a hot, sticky day than on a cool summer’s evening in my garage.


I started the project with an Iron Man 3 ARC FX Mask.Marvel-Iron-Man-3-ARC-FX-1024x1024 After snipping of the red elastic from the back, I used Bondo to fill out the nooks and crannies on both sides to get a more rounded shape. To fill in the right eye socket, I attached a slip of cardstock to the interior of the eye with hot glue before pouring in the putty. The Bondo would settle a little as it dried and required multiple applications.

I allowed the putty to dry 48 hours before settling down with my Dremel tool to sand out the bumps and ridges. The Dremel saved me hours of work in smoothing out the mask. I used a rough grain bit to get the shape I wanted, then completed the work with some fine grain sandpaper.

Before painting, I cut out a section from a screen repair kit to fit in the left eye and attached it to the back of the eye opening with hot glue. Mesh over the eye hole makes it more difficult to discern the color of an iris and the skin underneath, creating a more dramatic effect.

Once satisfied with the shape and smoothness of the mask, I started painting. I taped off half the surface, covering one side with a plastic grocery bag.


I cut out a paisley shape to cover the right eye. I pained the black half first before attaching the paisley stencil to the mask and spaying the orange.


A few coats of white paint to fill out the paisley and a black border nearly finished the mask.


Once I re-threaded some black elastic though the loops at the side, it was complete.


A balaclava, black technical shirt, tactical vest and pants, some paintball gloves, and a pair of knee high DocMartins rounded out the costume. My daughter’s cosplay took some more serious work, but we were very pleased with the results.



This article was previously published on Geek Bar DLC. All the content it mine, even with the watermarks.

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