Wednesday, February 27, 2013


This animated short played before WRECK-IT RALPH and also won the Oscar for Best Animated Short this year.

I loved every second of it.

Now it's on the Internet, so if you hated fun and refused to see a kids movie about a video game villain, I feel bad for you, but at least you can see this.

Friday, February 22, 2013


I used to make videos all the time. Whenever we'd take a trip somewhere, I always made sure to bring my camera so I could make quick little Internet videos. I stopped when my camera shit the bed and haven't really done it since—even though I now have a much nicer camera and an iPhone that takes pretty high quality videos.

I went back through my YouTube channel to look at a few of them and this is one that pops out—mostly because of how fat Casey was. Check the Top 5 video from this year or even from 2010 to see the difference. It's crazy.

Still. This was fun to do. I need to do it more.

Thursday, February 21, 2013


I've talked about this before, but we'll do it again. This song/video keeps getting taken down because record companies hate fun and don't want anyone to hear any music without money funneling into their pockets—even if the song is over 40 years old.

Anyway, this is the isolated vocal track for one of the best Rolling Stones songs of all time, "Gimmie Shelter."

I've been listening to a lot of Rolling Stones over the past few weeks and the album this song is on, Let It Bleed, might be my favorite. It's a close call though. They have a lot of great records (and a few bad ones too. i.e. Steel Wheels, Voodoo Lounge...).

But on to "Gimmie Shelter."

When the Stones were recording it, the producer suggested a female back-up singer to give the track a little something more, and gospel singer Merry Clayton was brought in and killed it. She gives the song so much soul that it's hard to imagine what it would have been like without her.

There was a downside to it though.

Clayton was six months pregnant when she recorded the track and suffered a miscarriage the very next day. Some attribute the miscarriage to the strain Clayton suffered while reaching the high notes, which made it hard for the singer to perform her own version of the song later in life.

Heartbreaking story for an amazing performance.

Listen to it.

P.S. It takes about 15 seconds to kick in once the video starts. Don't panic.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013


"Listen bro. I started this band for one reason and one reason only. And I want that directly reflected in the band name. So deal with it. We're called Poonhammer."

This is a real band. I looked it up and I listened to them. If you were wondering if rap-rock was still a thing, it very much is. That's probably why 311 still comes to SLC like twice a year. This city probably pays most of their bills.

Monday, February 18, 2013


It's President's Day today, so in honor of that, here are a few random facts about the men that have been in charge of the country over the years.

- Warren G. Harding once bet the White House China collection on a poker hand and lost.

- If you're the President, you're allowed to have extravagant pets. Thomas Jefferson had two bears given to him by Lewis & Clark, James Buchanan owned an elephant, John Quincy Adams had an alligator, William Henry Harrison had a goat and Teddy Roosevelt had a pet zebra.

- Abe Lincoln is the only President that was also a licensed bartender.

- Harry S Truman doesn't actually have a middle name. That's why there's no period after the 'S' when his name is typed, because it doesn't actually stand for anything.

- Teddy Roosevelt, an avid hunter, refused to shoot a bear cub on a hunting trip. The news picked up the story and a manufacturer invented the Teddy Bear, named after President Roosevelt.

- George Bush Sr. once vomited on the Japanese Prime Minister. Afterwards, the Japanese invented a new word, "Bushusuru", which means to vomit in public or 'do the Bush thing'.

- George Washington had to borrow $600 from his neighbor in order to get to his own inauguration. He then turned down the Presidential salary of $25,000 a year.

- John F. Kennedy's brain has been missing since the day it was autopsied and the coffin that transported him from Dallas to Washington was dumped in the Atlantic Ocean at the urging of his brother Robert.


A few months ago, SLUG Magazine called me up to pitch a story idea. They wanted to do a feature on Anthony Lucero. The editor that called me, Esther, started telling me all about him, his art and the band that he played in, Gaza. I heard her out, then when she was done, and I had accepted the assignment, I let it slip that I actually knew Anthony already and was excited to be writing a story about him.

He and I go back a ways. We were never great friends, but we always got along really well, had a lot of mutual friends and almost played in a band together more than once. His old band Compilate played shows with Cherem and Tamerlane a whole bunch of times and they were really good.

He and I met up one afternoon and talked for nearly an hour about all kinds of things. He's an awesome guy and great artist and I was glad I got the chance to write about him.

Head over to the SLUG Magazine website to read the whole thing, or pick up an actual physical copy when you're out and about. February is a short month, so it'll only be on the stands for about another week and a half. Make sure you grab one. Anthony drew the cover art too, and it looks fantastic.

SLUG Magazine -- When the last bell rang at Valley Christian School in Kearns, 8-year-old Anthony Lucero gathered his things just like the rest of the students. Only instead of heading for the door to be free until the next morning, Lucero headed to another part of the building. 

Valley Christian School was a K-12 institution with around 60 students total. Lucero’s mom was an English teacher for the junior high– and high school–age kids, and was often stuck after hours grading papers and finalizing lesson plans—which meant that he would be stuck there, too. Lucero and his friend Garritt Tucker, whose mom was also a teacher at the school, needed a way to pass the time each day. The two of them would unfold sheets of computer paper—the kind that was attached together with feed strips down each side—lay them out and just draw. 

“We’d have contests to draw sharks and other creatures and just make them as long as we could,” says Lucero. “Every kid gets showered with praise for whatever they do, but that’s the earliest encouragement that I can remember.”

Friday, February 15, 2013


We took this trip in May of 2010. I still have a ton of video footage from it that I haven't done anything with. Originally, Casey came up with the idea—somewhat of an outlandish one, as is his M.O.—that we'd make a reality show out of our trip. We'd then sell that to someone at a network and then they'd pay for us to take more trips and go on more adventures. An awesome idea, but highly unlikely. I had a crappy video camera that I was taking and Casey went out and bought a really nice one to take along.

I didn't think we actually had a shot at a show, but it was going to be fun to try. Casey asked me why I was filming some static backgrounds at one point and I told him it was for cover footage—the footage that you add in transitions and during credits and the like. I'd get a few seconds here and there of the mountains or the streets to add in later.

As we were walking through the streets one day, I heard Brook say "What the fuck are you doing?" and Casey responded, "Cover footage!"

I looked over and he was bent over filming water running through the gutter. And he kept filming. There's about a minute of footage of water running through a gutter. You can't tell where it is. It might as well have been in my front yard. Brook and I looked at each other, laughed and kept walking. The next day, Casey was getting more cover footage, only this time he was filming through the open front door of a someone's home while they watched TV. He was filming the family watching TV. Surprisingly, they thought that was weird and shut the door on him.

When we got home, I uploaded all the footage on my parents computer because my laptop didn't have enough space. It's still there.

I keep telling myself that I'll get to it eventually, but who knows. My plan was to get a new desktop computer, install Final Cut Pro and teach myself to use it by practicing on the Peru footage.

To tide us over, I put together this trailer. It's still the only thing that I've done with it.

I haven't gotten a new desktop yet, though. Maybe one day. I need a job first. Blogging at doesn't pay too many bills.

Thursday, February 14, 2013


*Ed. Note -- I post this every Valentine's Day because I had fun writing it and think it's kind of fun to read. Don't get upset about this.*

I miss the days when I had to come up with an awesome Valentine's Day box for school. I was pretty good at it and it was fun. Now it's just a day where I read girls complaining about it on the Internet.

But where did it come from? How did it start?

Allow me.

If you want to get all comic book-y, we can call this kind of a "Year One" type story.

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." You can use your imagination for what that entails.

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, chocolate 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—which bothers me because I still have to basically wait out a god damn cold. He signed a farewell message to her "From Your Valentine."

Soon after he left the note, actually 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 torture, 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. Originally I circulated it vie LiveJournal, then MySpace. I put it together after reading something Warren Ellis posted way back in the day, so this is all his fault. Also, it's entirely possible that none of this is true or historically accurate at all. But it's far more entertaining.)

Wednesday, February 13, 2013


I like this guy. He happens to share a birthday with another awesome guy by the name of Dan Christofferson, so I'm a little jealous. I only share a birthday with Tommy Lasorda and Scott Baio.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013


I have a new thing I'm trying this year. It's hard. Not hard in a sense that it's physically demanding or anything like that, because in the grand scheme of things, it actually has no bearing on anyone's life.

But it is hard. Harder than I thought it would be.

This year, I'm not watching trailers on the Internet. I love movies, but the constant Internet coverage of them is lessening my enjoyment of them. It's gotten really bad lately. There are too many movie-bloggers fighting for "scoops" that they will literally print any crock of shit to get hits now. Some of them, anyway. We've talked about that before.

I still know about films that are in the works and I know what projects the directors that I like are working on, but I'm trying to end it there.

Not interested in the "first images from..." or a "sneak peek at..." I just don't care. Well, that's not true. I do care, but I only want to care when I'm sitting in a dark theater and the trailer starts playing. That's the first time I want to see anything from any movie from now on.

I remember back in 1998, the trailer for STAR WARS: EPISODE I was supposed to play in front of MEET JOE BLACK. I tried watching it online, but we only had dial-up at my parents house, so it didn't really work. I went to the theater that night to see a movie—can't remember what, but it definitely wasn't MEET JOE BLACK—but that's what I was looking for. I showed up about 45 minutes early for whatever it was I was seeing just to go in and watch the EPISODE I trailer on the big screen.

When THE DARK KNIGHT trailer was released, I didn't have the Internet at my house yet. I left work at the Happy Sumo early, walked upstairs and sneaked in to whatever movie it was playing before, watched it and left.

If that's what I have to do in 2013, so be it.

I'm done with Internet trailers. Take that movie bloggers.

Wish me luck.

Monday, February 11, 2013


Someday I'll make a movie just so I can get the chance to do a "film noir" style credit sequence.

And maybe, if I'm lucky and creative enough, I can give the TOUCH OF EVIL opening a run for its money. It's one of my favorite opening sequences of all time. Watch it if you haven't before.

Friday, February 8, 2013

TOP 5 ANYTHINGS - 2012 - PT. 5

That was a fun week, right?

I want to thank everyone that took part—Erin, Casey, Elsha, Chris, Lauren, Mike, Brandee and Gardner. They were all great sports and made this little blog of mine pretty damn entertaining for a week.

Hopefully I can start doing more stuff like this more often. The iPhone takes pretty good video and I always have that on me, so be on the lookout. I've got some ideas.

And now, last but definitely not least, you guys get to look at my face for the next five minutes while I recount my own Top 5 of 2012. I couldn't force everyone else into it then not take part myself, but I did have the advantage of not having anyone else around to watch me while I recorded mine.

It's a little all over the place and I almost forgot what I was looking forward to in 2013, but only because I was busy thanking everyone for taking part and watching.

This is it. The last (probably) Top 5 video until next year. I'm acting as the Mariano Rivera—minus all the Jesus talk—of these videos and bringing it home.

Thanks for watching and keep checking back. I've got a lot of stuff to talk about starting monday morning. See you then.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

TOP 5 ANYTHINGS - 2012 - PT. 4

We're on the home stretch with just two more to go.

That is, unless there's anyone else dying to make a Top 5 video. I'll keep doing these as long as I have people that want to participate, so don't hesitate to bring it up. We'll do it.

Today's video is two of my closest friends, Brandee and Gardner.

Brandee and I have know each other for well over a decade now and she's basically the Elaine to my Jerry—just without the dating background. She told me she'd do this, but then kept trying to avoid it until I trapped her one night and all but forced her to do it. She loved every second of it, though.

Gardner was the first person that ever signed up for these things, so by default he's required to be a part of it each and every year. But I love having him because he always has something fun to talk about and these things usually involve the two of us getting together for lunch, which is always great.

So there you have it. The fourth of five videos is ready to go. Check back tomorrow to see yours truly divulge my own Top 5 Anythings from last year.

Until then...

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

TOP 5 ANYTHINGS - 2012 - PT. 3

Another day, another Top 5 video.

We're still having fun, right?

Lauren actually put together a list of her Top 5 moments from 2011 last year, then I never called her to actually do it. I felt kind of bad about that, but we were able to rectify the situation and I headed over to her cat palace for a few minutes to get her favorite moments of 2012.

Mike Farfel has been a huge supporter of just about everything I've ever done, so it seemed like a no-brainer to have him do one of these things. He just finished writing a novel (which should be available for you to read sometime this year) but until then, you can check out his blog, Stay Asleep, to keep up with him.

I like both of these people a whole lot, so I'm glad they wanted to take part in this.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

TOP 5 ANYTHINGS - 2012 - PT. 2

Things keep on rolling over here with part two of my Top 5 videos.

Two total newcomers to the game this year (I guess with the exception of Casey and Gardner, they're all newcomers) and I'm thrilled they wanted to take part.

Up first is my lovely friend Elsha. She's a hand talker, which was pretty adorable. Also, my friend Chris came by between writing articles and doing interviews for the Tribune and was probably the most prepared of anyone. I teamed them up because my cat decided that she needed to be in the video with both of them because she's an attention whore to company.

So here it is! Part two of the Top 5 Anythings with Elsha, Chris and a special appearance by Harley Quinn.

Monday, February 4, 2013

TOP 5 ANYTHINGS - 2012 - PT. 1

This is a little video project that I started a few years ago for GCA. I had my video camera and thought it would be kind of fun to just have everyone tell me what their 5 most favorite moments from the past year were. It could be anything. If you wanted to tell me the five best meals you had, that was on the table.

It was fun to do, so I did it again the next year. I forgot last year and just kind of assumed that no one cared or missed it. Then, around June, people started asking why I hadn't done one for 2011, so it sparked my interest again.

So I brought it back!

Most of January was spent gathering people that wanted to be on camera (and by camera I mean my phone) and then making sure I had a nice variety.

Part one is my go-to guy, the fail safe and always reliable Casey aka The Big Dogg. He's one of the guys that always gave me shit for falling off with the Top 5's, so I made sure he was one of the first to get his ready.

The other half of the video is a pretty girl named Erin that I didn't know (in real life, anyway) before last summer-ish, but she was game to be immortalized forever on Trevor Hale dot com, so she's definitely one of my new favorite people.

And with those rousing introductions, here's the first video. I've got 4 more, so check back throughout the week for the rest.