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Bolt Part 2 and Icarus Yo-Yos Coming This Friday

As of last week, I am done shipping Bolt Part 2s to all of my Kickstarter backers, which means that I’ll be making them available to everyone else soon. Very soon. This Friday soon!

If you missed the Kickstarter, this will be your first chance to buy a Bolt Part 2 yo-yo on DoctorPopular.com. But wait… there’s more! I’ll also be selling my brand new yo-yo, The Icarus too! The Icarus is the first yo-yo I’ve made without pre-selling on Kickstarter, which feels like a really big deal. So be sure to save the date! Friday June 1st at 8am PST on DoctorPopular.com!




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PopCast #10: The Yo-Yo Emoji is Coming Next Year!

Last year I started working on a proposal for a yo-yo emoji, with the helps of my friends at Emojination. It’s been an interesting experience and I’m really excited to say that it’s been officially accepted by the Unicode Consortium. Expect to see it in Unicode version 12, early next year.

In this episode of PopCast, I talk about the process of submitting the yo-yo emoji and I share a new trick called a “flopsicle”.

If you like this episode, please help sponsor more via Patreon.com/docpop and don’t forget to use the hashtag #popcastyoyo if you share any tricks online that you may have learned from this vlog.

For those of you who might be curious, here is some of the data I scraped from Google Trends, organic search engine results (Bing, Google, Yahoo, Etc), and social media:

There are more specific examples in the proposal too.
Continue reading PopCast #10: The Yo-Yo Emoji is Coming Next Year!

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The PopCast yo-yo vlog is back!

After ten long years, PopCast is back! PopCast is my yo-yo vlog (video blog) that I started running in 2007. Looking back at all the old episodes, I felt really proud of how fun and entertaining they were. So I decided it was time to start making them again. Here is the first new episode:

I’d like to keep making these videos and, over time, improve the production quality with better lenses and gear. Running a small yo-yo shop doesn’t quite cover that, so I’ve decided to launch a Patreon page where people can help support the videos and get special deals and offers from DoctorPopular.com

Become a Patron!

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The First Production Photos Of The Bolt Part 2!

I just received the first pictures from the factory of the Bolt Part 2 yo-yos. The Kickstarter, which ended a month ago, only showed 3 color options, but I decided to add an ALL BLACK Bolt yo-yo to the line up as a surprise to my backers. They seem to like it so far.

The Bolt Part 2 is expected to ship to backers in 3 weeks, then be available on this site shortly after that.

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How I got into yo-yoing 20 years ago

Today is my 20th anniversary of yo-yoing, so I wanted to share this story of how I got into the hobby and the strange ways it has changed my life.

On March 3rd, 1998 I flew out to Seattle with dreams of getting signed to a record label. It was a week before my 21st birthday. I was living in Lewisburg, TN and had been communicating with someone at K Records about my music. I sent them some tapes and they said “These are great, you should come visit us sometime.” I took that as “Come get signed to our label!”.

My plan was to spend most of my stay in Olympia, but the first thing I did when I arrived in Seattle was head straight to the top of the Space Needle. I was a big World’s Fair nerd at the time, and was trying to visit all of the old fairgrounds in the US. After enjoying the view, I stopped by the Space Needle’s gift shop to buy a little souvenier for my collection.

A Space Needle yo-yo was $1.49. A Space Needle snow globe was $1.99. So I went with the cheaper option.

During my week in Olympia I carried my new yo-yo everywhere. I was terrible and the yo-yo was just a cheap wooden yo-yo, but it kept me busy as I walked around town each day.

I obviously didn’t get signed to K Records. I met with the dude, who just worked in shipping or whatever, and we just chatted. He played in Godspeed Ye Black Emperror half the year, and worked the warehouse the other half. I met several folks just like him. Folks that I idolized for their art, zines, and/or music. Many of whom were homeless. Well technically homeless. Some lived in vans, or couch surfed, and just made albums and played shows all the time.

I realized on that trip that there were many super talented people out there who were just more passionate about making music than I was. Don’t get me wrong, I love it, but I love having a place to stay too. The nomadic lifestyle was just not something I was interested in.

I left Tennessee with dreams of getting signed. When I came back I decided what I really wanted was just to find some job I didn’t hate, so I could afford to make my own music at night. A big change, but it probably made me a happier person in the end.

On the day I came back from Seattle, the day after my 21st birthday, I made a quick stop at Cool Springs Mall for a quick bite to eat before I headed back to my small town. The mall was just opening and I noticed a man opening a brand new kiosk called “Yo Momma’s Yo-Yo Store”. As he was opening up shop for his first day, I walked up and asked if I could try one of his toys. He handed me a Yomega Fireball, which was one of the new wave of trans-axle yo-yos that were just catching on in Hawaii and California.

Impressed with my skills (and the fact that there weren’t any other 21 year-olds who carried a yo-yo with them) he offered me a job. A month later a huge yo-yo boom hit the nation and we could barely keep them in stock. 3 months later he was opening his second shop and made me a manager of the Cool Springs location. 6 months later I was the regional manager, traveling to new cities to hire and train staff for his growing empire. 12 months later I entered the World Yo-Yo Contest and got 3rd place. I was lucky enough to there right before the yo-yo boom and it was just the beginning.

I moved to Virginia, then Chattanooga, then bought the business and opened my final store in St. Louis. When the dust settled down, I moved to Minneapolis to manage a toy store in the Mall of America. I lived there for about 4 years when I was asked by a friend to to do one quick show in San Francisco, where I fell in love with the town (and weather) and decided never to leave. I met Christine here, made some video games and a bunch of art, and kept making music in spare time, just like I decided to do 20 years ago.

All those cities I lived in, people I met, opportunities I had, all came down to a little green souvenir I bought in Seattle right before my 21st birthday. Sometimes I wonder how completely different my life would be right now if that snow globe had been 50 cents cheaper.

space needles

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It’s the Bolt Part 2, You Need To Buy It!

The Bolt Part 2 just launched on Kickstarter and I’m so excited! Many of y’all have been asking me if I’ll ever have more Bolt Yo-Yos in stock and this is the final result. An updated version of a classic yo-yo.

What’s a Bolt?

For those of you who aren’t familiar with the Bolt, it was a signature yo-yo I made with the folks at YoYoJam 16 or 17 years ago. It was well loved by modders and had a great shape and feel that many newer yo-yos lack. YYJ has closed their business, so I teamed up with my buddy Hadrien and the folks at C3 Yo-Yo Design to make something that felt new and old-school at the same time.

I’ve either made the greatest Kickstarter video of all time… or the worst.

Let me know what you think in the comments below.