Thursday, February 24, 2011


And Top 5 Anything week continues with Casey aka The Big Dogg aka The Wildcat.

Also, he's just discovered Tumblr, so expect him to overuse it and run it in to the ground as quickly as possible, get bored, quit using it, abandon it and never touch it again all in the span of two weeks. So get while the gettin’ is good over at HotPantsCollege.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Tuesday, February 22, 2011


I filmed a bunch of these and then kind of forgot about them. They didn't turn out as great as I'd hoped, and I think that has to do with the fact that I caught everyone at kind of an odd time and no one had as much energy as they normally do.

Dan was knee deep getting ready for his art show (I filmed this the Monday before his show opened at Blonde Grizzly, so he was probably a little stressed) and it was pretty late at night.

So instead of grouping three of them together like I had been, I decided to just give each person their own video. A lot of that has to do with people having a very short attention span for these things and asking them to watch a six minute video seemed a bit much. I like the idea of this, but I just wanted it to be a little more entertaining. I'm going to find a good way to do it for next year and it'll be great.

But now, here's Mr. BeeTeeth himself, Dan Christofferson.

Sunday, February 20, 2011


With a little help from Lemmy

And a little help from Bob Mould (Husker Du)



Two guys I admire, both for very different reasons, were born on this day. Just felt like sharing.

My man Charles Barkley
“These are my new shoes. They’re good shoes. They won’t make you rich like me, they won’t make you rebound like me, they definitely won’t make you handsome like me. They’ll only make you have shoes like me. That’s it.” - Charles Barkley

And the guy that influenced my early life to a great degree, Kurt Cobain.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011


Not as much writing got done today as I had planned. Usually that's how I spend the first day of my weekend (since my days off are Tuesday and Wednesday), but since I only had today off, I actually had to do some things.

I wrote the entire opening paragraph of a half-assed review while laying in bed this morning. Then I got up and watched TREME instead. Gotta catch up before Season 2 starts. I missed the last half while I was in Peru last year. Christ. That was almost a year ago.

Long story short, I saw NO STRINGS ATTACHED (yes, a romantic comedy on Valentine's Day) and the whole time I couldn't decide which feeling was greater: my love of everything Natalie Portman does or my sheer hatred of Ashton Kutcher. At the end of the day, I think I hate Ashton way more than I enjoy looking at Natalie. So, if you feel the same way, don't see that movie.

Actually don't see that movie anyway.

You know what movie you should see?


It's nothing more than Jason Statham and Ben Foster being badasses for an hour and a half. It's a great time as long as you're not expecting anything more than it to be like every other Jason Statham movie (with the exception of SNATCH).

On a side note, now that Ben Foster is back on the big screen I'm sure I'll have people telling me how much I look like him again (and already have once or twice). I was in L.A. a few years ago, right around the time that 3:10 TO YUMA came out and there were billboards everywhere for it. One night, I was eating at Newsroom, which is a somewhat hip restaurant in Beverly Hills right across from the Ivy and people kept whispering and pointing at me. And before that, when Alpha Dog was in theaters, I got stopped on numerous occasions at random places with someone saying, "Hey, you look like that Nazi guy from Alpha Dog."

But anyway. The only other thing I did today was try to get a picture of me holding both Harley Quinn and Gwen Stacy. But that didn't work too well at all. So here's what I was able to get.

Monday, February 14, 2011



*Ed. Note -- I post this every Valentine's Day because I had fun writing it. FUN is the operative word here. Don't get upset about this.*

Let's talk a little about Valentine's Day. If you want to get all comic book-y, we can call this kind of a "Year One" type story.

Shall we?

In 3rd or 4th century BC, The Parentalia and Feralia Festivals of Purification were celebrated from February 13-18 to coincide with the Fertility Festival. The latter was a ritual not unlike the "Casual Encounters" section of CraigsList. All of the willing females would enter their names into a box and one by one, eligible men would step up for their turn. With a name in hand, the two would go off and what happened next was reffered to as a "rite of passage." Use your imagination for that one.

Before that began however, there was the LUPERCALIA (from the Latin lupus meaning "wolf"). During this day, priests—known as Luperci—from two colleges (Quintillii and Fabii) would meet at the Cave of Lupercal in the Palatine Hill, where a she-wolf was said to have nursed Romulus and Remus, the twin founders of Rome. There, Vestal Virgins would offer holy salt cakes and the priests would sacrifice a dog and a goat, smearing the animal blood onto the foreheads of youths of noble birth. Clad only in a goatskin thong, those same youths would later lead a band of revelers known as the luperci in the performance of such antics as whipping fields of crops and bystanders with a goatskin strip (known as the februa). Women gently lashed in such a fashion were thought to become fertile—even those known to be barren. The act of such lashings or whippings was known as februatio. Both this word and the word februa come from the Latin meaning "to purify." The naming of the month, February, is believed to have originated from these meanings.

Basically, February means "to purify by beating with a goatskin strip."

No flowers or candy hearts yet.

When Christianity was eventually formed, it was attempted to replace the rituals with something a little bit more uplifting. Pope Gelasius outlawed the Lupercian Festival, but kept the name drawing part—just slightly tweaked. Instead of available women, the names of Saints were written on the papers and it was believed that the recipient (boys and girls participated in the drawing) would emulate the life of whichever Saint was chosen. This new system, while much more noble, was a lot less fun. Eventually, it was abandoned and the old "rite of passage" returned.

Those are the ones you don't hear too much about. This one however, is the most widely known part of the origin.

In Rome, 270 AD, Claudius II passed an edict that abolished marriage. He felt that married men made poor soldiers because they were loath to leave their loves ones for battle. The emperor craved a strong army far more than he cared about popularity and banned the act of marriage all together.

Valentine, a bishop of Interamna, disagreed with the Emperor and invited young lovers to come to him in secret to be joined in the sacrament of matrimony. Claudius soon learned of this "friend of lovers" and had the bishop brought to the palace. The Emperor, impressed with the young priest's dignity and conviction, attempted to convert him to the Roman gods to save him from otherwise certain execution. Valentine refused to renounce Christianity and imprudently attempted to convert the Emperor. It didn't work and he was sentenced to death. While Valentine was in prison awaiting execution, he fell in love with the blind daughter of the jailer, Asterius. Through his unswerving faith, he miraculously restored her sight. He signed a farewell message to her "From Your Valentine."

Soon after, on February 14th (or so history claims) Valentine was clubbed, stoned and then beheaded.

To recap, in case you got bored: Valentine's Day is essentially the celebration of blood, sacrifice, random sex, wolves and martyrs.

I want a card with that on it.

(*Note - I wrote this after reading a few different histories relating to Valentine's Day on the Internet. Warren Ellis is responsible for me looking further into it. He has some cards and such available on his site if you're interested. Also, it's entirely possible that none of this is true or historically accurate at all. But it's far more entertaining.)

Sunday, February 13, 2011


Three years ago, I was writing for the Daily Utah Chronicle on a regular weekly basis. We had a lot of space to fill, so they started letting me write opinion pieces from time to time (it didn't hurt that Dan Fletcher was my editor and said yes to pretty much anything I wanted to do).

I started my Tumblr account in 2007 and was going through it earlier. There were some things on there that I'd forgotten about and this piece was one of them. I wrote it for our Valentine's Day issue in 2008 and while it still (kind of) holds up, I feel I'd write it much differently now. And hopefully I'd write it a lot better. But anyway...


February 2008 -- I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again — computers killed the mix tape.

It’s true, and it’s a shame. I remember those nights sitting at home, timing the cassette player just right so that I could fit more songs on a tape. I spent hours searching through my CD collection, wondering if the object of my desire was going to read too much — or almost worse, not enough — into what the songs were about. It was hard work, but it was all worth it.

Then came the technological revolution, with CD burning abilities, iPods, playlists and everything else that, in the mid-’90s, seemed so far away. The mix tape was the first and most heartbreaking casualty, because a burned CD just wasn’t the same. With the ability to skip over tracks and stick it in your computer to pull up the song titles from the Internet, a mix CD just didn’t seem as personal or fun to listen to. It required no real effort, because anyone can make a playlist on iTunes. You can even steal one from a celebrity, and that’s just sad.

So, in the spirit of Valentine’s Day, it’s time to make a good, old fashioned mix tape for the one you like/love/care for/whatever. Just remember, there are rules to follow and songs to avoid, but that’s the purpose of this column: to help you make that perfect mix tape. Try not to screw it up.

Rule One: Start off with a kicker! Grab your sweetheart’s attention. I’ve always thought that The Bouncing Souls’ “Hopeless Romantic” did a great job at it. It’s full of energy, and people who claim they don’t like the Bouncing Souls are probably liars or have poor taste in music. Either way, this song works.

After that, you have to take it up a notch, but then the third track needs to cool things down. You don’t want to use up all the fast stuff too early. Huey Lewis and the News playing “The Power of Love” will keep things moving, and the fade-out at the end leaves the perfect place for you to cool things down with something like Paul McCartney and Wings’ “Maybe I’m Amazed.” But of course, you don’t want to give off the impression that you’re too soft, so after that you’ll need to take it back up and give the tape some life. Aside from his personal problems and general strangeness, Michael Jackson knew how to write a damn good song back in the day. “The Way You Make Me Feel” will give it a jolt of energy, and hopefully no one will take too much time to think about whether or not he’s talking about Macaulay Culkin.

And of course, what mix tape would be complete without an ’80s metal power ballad? With so many to choose from, it would almost seem easier to make an entire mix of them. Unless you’re in love with Tawny Kitaen (and who wasn’t, honestly), it’s probably better to stick to just one. With so many options, it’s hard to choose, but Guns N’ Roses’ “Sweet Child O’ Mine” usually does the trick, or maybe she’d be more into “Love of a Lifetime” by Firehouse or Foreigner’s “Waiting For A Girl Like You.” It’s a tough call, so maybe sticking with “Bad Medicine” by everyone’s favorite Jersey Boys, Bon Jovi, is the way to go.

Speaking of Bon Jovi and Guns N’ Roses, there are a number of songs to avoid also. Channeling your love through Axl Rose singing lines like “I used to love her/but I had to kill her” is probably not a good idea. Neither is “You Give Love a Bad Name.” It’s a safe bet that although both of those are excellent songs, you’ll make the wrong impression, and the night will be over quicker than Firehouse’s career.

Of course, these are merely suggestions, and in no way are you expected to use these songs on your own tape. The purpose of this list was merely to provide last minute gift ideas, and something like this will work beautifully. Especially considering that you’ll be able to find every song you want on the Internet, blank CDs at the bookstore and CD burners on just about every computer.

Oh God, the irony.


Happy Birthday, sir.

Thursday, February 10, 2011


I literally had to stop working for a few minutes today to process this news. I knew something was up last night when I read the reports of a blow-up between Sloan and VP Kevin O'Connor after the game. Then he took an extra long time coming out for the post-game questions with media.

Never expected he'd quit mid-season. And it breaks my heart, truly.

Things didn't look right at the game last night and Deron Williams quit in the last two minutes. They could have won it. I was there. I saw him. He looked listless, bored and disinterested as Derrick Rose came up and took the ball away and sealed their fate for the night. That's what it's come down to today. All sorts of reports about how Sloan was tired of D-Will blaming everyone else for everything even though he hasn't been trying for weeks. He's supposed to be the best PG in the league, but the past two weeks he's been killed by Derrick Rose, Russell Westbrook and Rajon Rondo. I know he's had a bum wrist, but still. He clearly didn't care and now it looks like he's bad guy in this situation.

And he very well might be. He's been changing plays on the fly and the entire team (that he's supposedly the leader of) hasn't been running the plays. Former Jazz beat writer Ross Siler has been saying there's something wrong for weeks while he watches the games. Says there's supposed to be multiple moving parts of each play and the Jazz just weren't doing it. They were getting lazy. Surprising because in the 23 years that Sloan has been running that system, they've only had one losing season.

Another thing I'd like to share is what former Chrony editor and current Standard Examiner writer Matthew Piper said on Twitter:
"How could the Jazz blame Sloan's system? They're in second place with so-so talent! And I thought I liked this Jazz team... #fuckthejazz"

And Steve Luhm, a long time reporter for the Tribune just posted this (by the way, it's days like today that I love Twitter. I was at work away from everything and I was still able to follow every single moment of this ordeal) on Twitter:

"One trusted source says Deron Williams-Sloan relationship was the big factor in this, despite press conference spin."
"The trusted source, in fact, is quite angry that Deron Williams now has the ability to force management's hand."
"Source: 'Deron Williams quit the last month.' Wow."

And that's the biggest thing I keep coming back to. The system works if you're not too lazy to run it.

But I can say anything I want. I'm not the one out there on TV every night trying to win ball games. I'm bitching like a fanboy on the Internet. I know this.

I'm going to miss Sloan a whole bunch. And I've also got to say, after listening to assistant coach Phil Johnson (who also resigned today) talk on the radio, I've got a newfound respect for him, too. He talked about how he would have been the logical successor to take over the team, thus earning a couple million dollars, but decided to walk away because it wasn't about the money. He was in solidarity with Sloan and I loved hearing that. He and Sloan ate lunch and dinner together nearly two hundred times a year for over twenty years and as soon as Sloan said it was time for him to go, Johnson didn't even skip a beat and said, "Then I'm going with you."

That is something special.

And to Deron Williams, if all this is true: You wanted to be the Alpha Dog, well now you are. This entire season is now on your shoulders so you better deliver.

But my guess? The Jazz will come up short and you'll blame someone else just like you have been all season. Then you'll leave town (for somewhere like Dallas or LA) and the only legacy you'll ever leave was of the guy that forced out one of the best coaches in NBA history.

I hope that's not true, but a big part of me thinks that's exactly what will happen.

And I thought Le Bron was a dick. Well, move over sir. There's a new heel in town.

Monday, February 7, 2011


Passes for San Diego Comic Con went on sale Saturday morning while I was at work. They were all sold out by the time I got home.

Since 2003, I've only missed it a few times. Twice because I was on tour with Cherem and last year because I'd gone to Peru and couldn't afford to take more time off work. I was actually really looking forward to going this year because last time was a lot of fun. We stayed a little ways away (in Old Town) but we didn't exhaust ourselves on the convention floor and saved enough energy to actually go out at night.

Thing is, every year that we've gone, we've waited until March to buy passes and even then we still got a Four Day (with Preview Night) pass. This year, the passes with Preview Night sold out at the 2010 show and the two times they've tried to sell passes before last Saturday, the servers have crashed and they had to shut it down after about an hour of trying. So by the time I got home from work on Saturday and looked into it, all that was left was a day pass for Thursday.

San Diego Comic Con has long since given up on being a comics show and quickly turned into a launching pad for movies, TV shows, video games and other cultural events, but it's still fun.

I'm hoping I can get a Professional Pass through City Weekly (since I've covered the event every year I've gone anyway) or through the Salt Lake City Film Festival (not really sure why they'd let us do that, but they probably will).

If only so I can make another video like these. They're fun to do.



San Diego Comic Con from Grudge City Activities on Vimeo.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Tuesday, February 1, 2011



I was excited to see this. It was one of the movies I regretted missing at Sundance last year (it never played at a convenient time for me) and have been waiting for it to come out ever since.

Everything I heard was that the movie was great but it was extremely depressing and if you saw it on a Friday night, it would ruin your entire weekend. Needless to say, I was pretty pumped to see if that was true. But of course, I waited until a Sunday night so that it may have ruined my entire week.

It hasn't. And while I have been thinking about it a couple of times yesterday, it was more thinking about how disappointed I was that it didn't ruin my week. Sure, Michelle Williams and Ryan Gosling give great performances, but that can be said about just about anything the two of them do. They're great actors and that's what they're supposed to do. Overall, I'd say it was solid, but it definitely wasn't a life altering movie. Glad I saw it, but I shouldn't have been as hyped up to be depressed as I was, because it didn't follow through. I don't know, maybe that's just me though (to be fair, a girl did call me an emotionless robot one time, so I may have a different tolerance level for this stuff).

But I did like the music, which was done by Grizzly Bear. Doubtful that I'll ever seek out and listen to anything else they've done, but it worked in the context of the movie.

Also, the trailer for it is fantastic and I think it's one of the things that sold me on the movie. So, in other words, it did exactly what it was supposed to do. But it wasn't nearly as much of a letdown as the TERMINATOR: SALVATION trailer greatness to actual movie greatness, though. I'm still trying to get over that one.


So I've been toying with the idea of making a mixtape to put out for everyone to download, but have been holding back for a couple of reasons.

1) Because I'm not sure anyone cares about my taste in music. I like what I like and it's probably not going to be anything mind-blowing. But it would be kind of fun to just list the songs I've been listening to a lot lately, but who knows.

2) Seems like a lot of other people are way ahead of me on this idea and the last thing I want is for them to think I'm riding their coat tails. I do that enough as it is. I don't need to do it any more.

A friend of mine, Destin, who does Steady Clappin' has a mixtape that he does every so often. I've downloaded a couple of them and they're usually pretty good. Lots of stuff I've never heard before. And my friend Colby made one the other day on his blog 108 Manifestations (and I've got to hand it to him, while I still hate Bob Marley, I was pretty excited he threw some Van Morrison on there).

So, you know, I'm just throwing this out that there may be a mixtape sometime soon. Hopefully you'll all grab it and enjoy it.