Friday, January 31, 2014


Long. Live. Sloan.
January 31 shall from this moment on be known as "Jerry Sloan Day," according to our own Governor Herbert, who may be just trying to save face from some of his more despicable actions over the past few months. You know, like being really, incredibly, super anti-gay but being totally cool with the air in the state deteriorate at a rapid pace because it lines the pockets of his friends.

Sloan abruptly retired after a game against the Chicago Bulls (a game that I was at and still have the ticket stub for) in February 2011. Lots of rumors swirled about it being due to Deron Williams, Greg Miller and Kevin O'Connor but no one knows exactly what happened. Sloan said he was exhausted and just didn't have it in him anymore and that it was time to go.

He was given a role of "consultant" or something last summer, but it's more just a legacy thing. The Jazz organization doesn't want one of the longest tenured coaches in history leaving in a huff to be a black mark, so they're trying to fix it.

The Jazz will be retiring the number 1223, which represents the number of regular season and playoff victories under his belt. he coached the team for 23 years, which is a lifetime in professional sports. There were 245 head coaching changes around the NBA during his tenure with the Jazz.

I've always been a fan of Sloan and to celebrate, I made these shirts that I still have for sale. If you're interested in one, visit my shop and pick one up. I can't have it shipped to you in time for the game tonight, but at least you'll have it.

Long. Live. Sloan.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014


I hate this article.

Well, let me rephrase that. I hate this article because of how accurate it is.

Remember the good old days when you stopped hanging out with or broke up with someone and it was fairly easy to avoid them? Those days are long gone, my friend.

It's especially hard when you're as good at the Internet as I am. The social media generation never really breaks up, they just sit on the opposite side of one big room. Even if you're not trying to see them, you still see them. Maureen O'Connor dives in and wades through all the things that go along with "dating" in the 2000's. It's a good article that's also kind of depressing.

I've posted the first little bit below, but you should really follow the link and read the whole thing.

NY Mag -- All My Exes Live In Texts -- I have 700 friends on Facebook, 36 of whom I consider exes. Not all are ex-boyfriends—in the eleven years that “boyfriend” has been a name for men in my life, I have referred to nine as “boyfriends.” The rest are men I dated casually, guys I dated disastrously, make-out buddies, one-night stands, vacation flings, and a few boys I never touched but flirted with so heavily they can no longer be categorized as “just friends.” These people aren’t ex-boyfriends but they’re ex-something, weighted with enough personal history to make my stomach drop when they message me or pop up in social-media feeds. Which is pretty often.

There was a time, I am told, when exes lived in Texas and you could avoid them by moving to Tennessee. Cutting ties is no longer so easy—nor, I guess, do we really want it to be. We gorge ourselves on information about the lives of our exes. We can’t help ourselves. There’s the ex who “likes” everything you post. The ex who appears in automated birthday reminders. The ex who appears in your OkCupid matches. The ex whose musical taste you heed on Spotify. The ex whose new girlfriend sent a friend request. The ex you follow so you know how to win him back. The ex you follow so you know how to avoid her in person. The ex you watched deteriorate after the breakup. (Are you guilty or proud?) The ex who finally took your advice, after the breakup. (Are you frustrated or proud?) The ex whose new partner is exactly like you. (Are you flattered or creeped out?) The ex whose name appears as an autocorrection in your phone. (Are you sure you don’t talk about him incessantly? Word recognition suggests otherwise.) The ex whose new partner blogs about their sex life. The ex who still has your naked pictures. The ex who untagged every picture from your relationship. The ex you suspect is reading your e-mail. The ex you watch lead the life you’d dreamed of having together, but seeing it now, you’re so glad you didn't.

Read the rest of the article here.

Sunday, January 19, 2014


There's a lot of stuff that gets left on the cutting room floor when you do an interview. A lot of it is for good reason, though. Most of the time it's because it just doesn't fit with the narrative.

Ryan Ottley, Utah native and artist of the comic book Invincible, and I sat outside Nobrow Coffee one evening this past summer and talked about a lot of things. The crux of the article was Salt Lake Comic Con, but we barely got into that. I was more interested in everything else he was up to - mainly since he was only going to be at SLCC for the first day.

We talked about how he got into the business, why he doesn't jump ship for Marvel or DC and about that art burning party that he had with Derek Hunter that set comic book message boards on fire.

Very little of that made it in to the actual article, but he still gave some great quotes. Figured it was high time you got to see them.

You can check out the original article that I wrote for SLUG's August issue first, then come back here for the stuff that didn't make the cut.

You can keep up with him at his own site, the art blog he does with his friend James Harren called The Bog, and of course you should be reading the fantastic Invincible published by Image Comics.

Enjoy the stuff that didn't make it!

On Becoming a Full-Time Comic Artist:

I didn’t do any school or anything. I used to work at a warehouse and I’d always had that dream of being a comic book artist since I was 14. I was working at the warehouse and I got fired from that, and I thought ‘sweet, I’ll just live off these unemployment checks and try to get in to my dream job.’

That’s what I did and it worked, I think. It took about a year and a half of just doing short stories for - they had an anthology back then. I was doing it for free. I would just find a writer that I liked and I would say ‘send me this and if I like it, I’ll draw it and if I don’t... sorry.’ I’m not going to draw something for free that I don’t like.

On Working for The Big Two:

Mostly at conventions people will come up and give me cards. I’ve had offers to do stories at Marvel and I’ve turned them down. Marvel was the most recent thing and I said, 'I’ll do this as long as I get to do my own covers. And they said no to that.’

I think that’s really weird. They’re really picky about that. I think if I’m going to draw the interior, I’m going to draw the cover, too. That’s just the way I roll. I don’t mind some covers here and there by other artists. Every once in a while Invincible will have guest artists, but most of the time it’s me doing the covers.

When I go into a comic shop, sure I see these beautiful Marvel covers everywhere, then you open up to the inside, and I’m not saying the inside is terrible, but it’s different. It’s like different actors and I hate that.

Sometimes it feels like the interiors are more for the story and the cover is more for the art and I don’t like that. All of it needs to be about the art and the story.

My favorite artist isn’t just the kind of artist that’s a great storyteller. It’s gotta be a good story, but it’s also got to have that really good artistic thing that's good enough to be a cover. You can do interesting things all over the place instead of just telling stories.

There’s a bunch of artists that are mainly just there to tell the story. They’re not flashy, they’re not over the top.

On Burning Old Art:

I don’t do that anymore. That was really Derek and I having a burn party. I burned 10 pages. 10 terrible pages that I just wanted to get off the planet. It’s funny, I guess I shouldn’t have shared it. It’s fine to do it, just don’t share it. I got called the worst names and people told me I should have given it to charity. Why would I give shitty art to charity? That’s kind of a dick move right there. ‘You won’t make any money off this, but here you go.’

If I wanted charity to make money, I’d send them the good things I’ve done. Which I have! Do I need to go out and shout 'here are the good things I’ve done and here are the burned things I’ve done?'

Friday, January 17, 2014


Letterman is still king.
Even though I’m waaaaay behind on movies this year, let’s talk about everyone else’s favorite talking point—the Oscars!

I haven’t seen everything this year. I haven’t seen anywhere near as much as I would have liked. When all of your friends get married or move to California and you don’t have a GF to drag along to movies she probably doesn't want to see anyway, the thing that suffers the most is how many movies you actually see over the course of a year. Sunday Night Movie is pretty much dead and the Half-Assed Reviews are on life support, but we’re not here to talk about that stuff. You’re here to listen to me wax intellectual about the 2014 Oscar nominations, so let’s get to it.

The Oscars are a very flawed system - especially when it comes to the writing categories - but they're 1000 times better than the Golden Globes. That's not saying much though. Anyway...

Best Picture
AMERICAN HUSTLE – Great performances and a fun movie to watch. I completely forgot I had seen it when I woke up the next morning and I couldn’t really explain the plot if I tried. That doesn’t bode well for its longevity. But no one gives a shit about long-term, so this is going to win.
CAPTAIN PHILLIPS – My friend Casey told me it was a “steaming pile of shit” and to stay away from it. Two weeks later he asked me if I’d seen it because he thought it was really good. I don’t know, man. It’s not going to win.
*UPDATE* I saw it yesterday. I really liked it. I don't think it was "Best Picture" quality, but it was really good. Casey's first reaction was completely wrong, his second reaction was more on the nose.
DALLAS BUYERS CLUB – I want to see this win because I’m 100% on board with McConaughey’s reinvention. But I also haven't seen it, so I have no idea how good the movie itself actually is.
*UPDATE* I saw this yesterday, too. I didn't really like the movie as a whole. I don't know exactly why, but I didn't. McConaughey was great though. He'll win Best Actor, but I don't think there's any way that anyone loved this movie the way some people love AMERICAN HUSTLE or any of the others. It's on the list because it's an "important" movie, but it's not great.
GRAVITY – Somewhere, there’s an idiot watching this on his iPhone bitching about it. This is a movie that was made to be seen in a theater. It’s a fantastic experience. The movie’s not amazing, but it’s really fun to watch. In a theater. Don’t watch this on your god damn phone.
HER – Spike Jonze has never done anything wrong. I haven’t even seen this movie and I stand by that statement 100%.
NEBRASKA – I want to see this because I loved Alexander Payne’s first two movies and Bruce Dern was in THE BURBS, so in my eyes he’s good forever.
PHILOMENA – I just don’t care. Simple as that.
12 YEARS A SLAVE – I’ll see this eventually. This is the only threat to AMERICAN HUSTLE, but I’m not sure how much of a threat it is.
THE WOLF OF WALL STREET – I had a blast watching this. Every stock broker is a huge asshole and if you thought this movie in any way glorified what they were doing, you probably didn’t actually see the movie.

TOO LONG, DIDN'T READ PREDICTION: AMERICAN HUSTLE. 12 YEARS A SLAVE might sneak in if it doesn't win the Best Director award.

Best Actor – Christian Bale, Bruce Dern, Leonardo DiCaprio, Chiwitel Ejiofor, Matthew McConaughey
I’m always rooting for DiCaprio, but I think it’s going to be McConaughey. I hope it is. If I still haven’t seen DALLAS BUYERS CLUB by then, I’ll just pretend he won it for MUD which I loved. Or for Wooderson in Dazed and Confused because that’s an all-time great character.
*UPDATE* Tom Hanks should be on this list instead of Christian Bale for the last 10 minutes of CAPTAIN PHILLIPS, alone. He shouldn't win, but those 10 minutes were better than Bale's entire performance. Bale also gets knocked down a few points each time I think about his awful, awful Batman voice. No matter how good he may be in what I'm currently watching, he'll never get past that voice.

Best Actress – Amy Adams, Cate Blanchett, Sandra Bullock, Judi Dench, Meryl Streep
This is a five-way toss-up, and I say that mostly because I've only seen 2 of the 5 performances. Am I an asshole if I root for Amy Adams solely based on her amazing cleavage in AMERICAN HUSTLE? Probably! I’m doing it. No chance to actually win, but that's my vote.

Best Supporting Actor – Barkhad Abdi, Bradley Cooper, Michael Fassbender, Jonah Hill, Jared Leto
You know how sometimes you’ll meet a celebrity and they’re just a colossal asshole that’s just dripping with condescension and ego and it just ruins them forever? From that point on, you just root against that person and hope they fail over and over again. But when they don’t fail and just become more famous and popular instead, you start to hate them even more. That’s how I feel about Jared Leto. I fucking hate that guy. So he’ll probably win and I’ll have to listen to every girl I know talk about his god damn hair. Fuck.
*UPDATE* I'm officially rooting for Barkhad Abdi because of his performance in CAPTAIN PHILLIPS. He was really, really good and held his own against Tom Hanks the whole way. Also, because fuck Jared Leto.

Best Supporting Actress – Sally Hawkins, Jennifer Lawrence, Lupita Nyong’o, Julia Roberts, June Squibb
Honestly, as long as Julia Roberts doesn't win I’ll be fine with anyone else. I’ll root for Jennifer Lawrence because that will be fun and she was really good in AMERICAN HUSTLE, but she’s not allowed to win twice in a row, right? She’s not Tom Hanks, for Christ’s sake. Lawrence's movie is also the only one I've seen out of these 5, so that helps her a lot. I'm an excellent film writer.
TOO LONG, DIDN'T READ PREDICTION: Lupita Nyong'o because Wesley Morris thinks so. I like that guy

Best Director – David O. Russell – AMERICAN HUSTLE, Alfonso Cuaron – GRAVITY, Alexander Payne – NEBRASKA, Steve McQueen – 12 YEARS A SLAVE, Martin Scorsese – THE WOLF OF WALL STREET
This one comes down to Russell vs. McQueen, with Cuaron right behind them. I’m going to guess McQueen because reasons. Then again, according to the L.A Times, 94% of the Academy voters are white and most of them are over 60 years old. That means there’s a good chance that a majority of Academy voters are afraid of black people. It’s 2014 and that’s what Steve McQueen is up against.


There you have it. Those are my half-assed Oscar predictions.We'll check back in a month or so to see what else I got around to watching and what actually won.

What do you think should win, what do you think will win and what are you surprised got left out?

P.S. I didn't mention the BEST SCREENPLAY and BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY awards or how INSIDE LLEWYN DAVIS got shut out, because those may be posts for another day.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014


If you're unaware, I'm slightly obsessed with title sequences and title cards. I talk about it kind of a lot (like here, here, here and here) and I'm not ashamed.

I can write just about anything, but I couldn't draw a straight line if I had a ruler. Drawing and design work is something I love, but I'm just not cut out for.

This link has been sitting in the "Don't Forget" bookmark of my browser since October of 2012. I totally forgot about it. Like I said before, 'timely' isn't something I pay much attention to in regards to this site.

It's an article from Creative Bloq where they get a few of their favorite designers to tell them why they love certain title sequences. A few of them are classics, like STAR WARS and VERTIGO and then there are a few new entries like SCOTT PILGRIM VS. THE WORLD and ENTER THE VOID (which Kanye West used as an inspiration for his "All of the Lights" video.

It's definitely worth your time. Take a few minutes and read it now, or bookmark it and forget about it for a year or so. It's up to you.

Friday, January 10, 2014


Occasionally I write things for SLUG Magazine. I don't do a lot of work for them, but a few times a year I'll put together a long-ish piece about something or someone that's important to Salt Lake City.

That means that I'm a contributor and my name and choices get included in the magazine's annual year-end Top 5. It's not as cool as my own Top 5 Anythings list that I do over here, but it's pretty cool. The SLUG list is mostly centered on music or comedy. Albums really.

I'm really bad at keeping up on new music (as documented many times on this site), but after Esther asked me to write up my list, I tried really hard. I spent the next few weeks listening only to records that came out this year and avoided depending too much on old stand-by's.

I had to send my list in on October 28. There were still two months of new releases to come! How dare Esther Merono try to get things in a timely fashion to have ready at the beginning of December! How dare she, I say!

But really, with over 50 contributors to corral, it's totally understandable that she'd want my list that early. It's also 100% my fault that I spent way more time perfecting my 90's punk and Ludacris guest-spot playlists than listening to new stuff.

This is what it looked like when I sent it to her.

1) Nine Inch Nails - Hesitation Marks
2) Yeah, Yeah, Yeah's - Mosquito
3) The Bronx - IV
4) Ghostface Killah - 12 Reasons to Die
5) Low - The Invisible Way

I still stand by a few of those. Nine Inch Nails and Yeah, Yeah, Yeahs are safe. I question my own judgement on the other three. I haven't listened to the Ghostface Killah record a single time since I added it to the list- the same goes for Low. I think that means they should both be taken off.

I have, however, listened to Pure Heroine by Lorde half a dozen times since then. What that says about me, I'm not entirely sure. It's a good album. Now, anyway. In three years I might think differently.

This is all a pretty roundabout way of saying that I have no idea what the best 5 albums that came out this year should be.

Do you?

What were your favorite records of 2013? Tell me what I should be listening to.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014


The Satanic Temple is kind of awesome.

I've never really been a fan of Satanism because of the (majority of) idiots that preach it. To me, preaching Satanism is just as annoying as preaching Christianity, which I don't believe in either.

But The Satanic Temple is doing things just a bit differently. A few months ago, they tried to adopt a highway in New York. Now they've got their sights set on something bigger.

Oklahoma state representative Mike Ritze (R - Broken Arrow) recently allowed a Christian group to erect a statue of the Ten Commandments on the statehouse grounds. This didn't go over well with a whole bunch of people and a slew of different groups - including PETA and The Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster - demanded that they be represented on the grounds of the statehouse as well. The ACLU immediately filed a lawsuit because of the Ten Commandments statue and the influx of requests, so a moratorium was placed on putting anything else up, but that didn't stop The Satanic Temple from going forward with plans.

They started an IndieGoGo fund to raise money to erect a 7-foot statue of Baphomet seated on a throne with happy children by his side. According to spokesman Lucien Greaves (that made-up name right there is one of my many annoyances with Satanism as a whole) "The statue will also have a functional purpose as a chair where people of all ages may sit on the lap of Satan for inspiration and contemplation."

They were attempting to raise $20,000 and as of this writing, they've surpassed that amount.

While The Satanic Temple is the one spearheading this project, The Church of Satan isn't nearly as enthusiastic. Magus Peter H. Gilmore, the High Priest of that organization said "The statue is crudely designed and ugly to me and seems pedophilic, since the caduceus between the goat’s legs is a phallic symbol. Having children reaching towards a being with an exposed symbolic penis seems to imply that Satanism represents the same situation which has plagued the Roman Catholic and other Christian churches for some time: child abuse. The image appears to show the goat’s left hand possibly caressing the male child. Revolting."

"It occurs to me," Gilmore says, "that the efforts by the perpetrators of this proposal may be intended as a means for making Satanism appear foolish and just as dysfunctional and irrational as we secularists view most other religions to be."

That two groups of Satanists are arguing over the merits of Satanism kind of says it all, I think.

But whatever. I think it's a great idea. I'm all for a Baphomet statue in a city that I don't live in - mostly because I want to see people in Oklahoma freak out if it happens. If this thing does get made, I'll be stopping in Oklahoma on my way to Detroit. I'm all about cool statues.

A sampling of The Satanic Temple's beliefs are below. I've gotta say, they make a pretty strong point. But like all religions, it's probably overrun with bat-shit crazy people that ruin it for everyone else and make it impossible for me to even consider.

The picture up top is what the statue will (*fingers crossed*) look like and below is a brief sample of The Satanic Temple's beliefs.

"To embrace the name “Satan” is to avow skepticism in the face of all things, even — especially — that which is held sacred. To stand forth as a “Satanist” is to rend from the persecutory, affrighted mob a convenient out-group label, demanding that individuals be judged for their concrete actions, not their fealty to arbitrary social norms and illusory categorizations.

Satanism is not mindless abandon and depravity, but a philosophy that drives us to lead fruitful and dignified, epicurean lives. Satan, the symbolic force of design that would urge humanity toward refined pleasures of the Arts and Sciences. Satan, who first brought the fruit of knowledge to Humankind that thereafter we might live not as naked brutes in the wild, but develop our cultural splendor into ever more aesthetically and technologically advanced heights. Ours is the Humanistic Satan who would sacrifice His own Heavenly residence so that Humanity might learn to understand and enjoy the physical world they inhabit.

Satanists are often natural aestheticians who revel in the grandeur of human artistic, architectural achievements while also often drawn to the idiosyncratic and bizarre that are all too typically misunderstood, feared, and discarded.

With compassion, the Satanic Temple accepts all who are just and compassionate."

Tuesday, January 7, 2014


When I was growing up, my best friend lived right across the street from me.

It was as solid of a friendship as a kid could hope for. We both loved the Yankees and baseball cards. We worshipped STAR WARS, played night games like Capture the Flag and Kick the Can with other neighborhood kids, had sleepovers and re-enacted a scene from WAYNE’S WORLD for the 5th & 6th grade talent show. We built a clubhouse in the back room or his garage and turned the space behind that same garage under a huge pine tree into a little hut.

Every week during football season, we’d each put a dollar a in a little jar at my house. At the end of the season, we’d have about forty bucks and my mom would drive us to the grocery store so we could spend it all on junk food for our own private Super Bowl party. He loved Michael Jackson a bit too much for my taste, and both of his parents were habitual chain smokers so he always smelled like stale cigarettes, but we got along great.

Most importantly though, his dad had a subscription to Playboy.

I knew what Playboy was before I met him, but I’d never actually seen one. This was well before the Internet and long before girls posted nudes (with their head cropped off, of course) on Tumblr or sent sexy texts. An old, passed-around copy of Playboy was all we had.

His dad knew we looked at it. How could he not? As most houses did in the 80’s, they had a place right in the front room where all the magazines lived until it was time to throw them out. Along with Sports Illustrated, Sporting News, People and a few others that his parents subscribed to, Playboy was left right out in plain sight. We’d always sneak some peeks while the current issue was lying around, but the real trick was finding ways to keep them.

One of Jonathan’s chores was to take out the garbage and every few weeks and that would usually include a stack of magazines that his parents didn't want anymore. Everything went right into the trash cans outside because no one had figured out that recycling might be a good idea in the long run.

Jonathan and I hatched a plan.

Whenever the Playboy ended up in the stack to be thrown out, Jonathan would carefully remove it once he got outside. If his mom wasn't in the kitchen or dining room, which both had windows overlooking the driveway where the garbage was and backyard, he’d dump the magazines, take the coveted Playboy and hide it.

Sometimes it had to be hidden in the bushes just outside the back door until Jonathan could get back outside, but sometimes he’d drop the trash while his parents were watching TV in separate bedrooms. In that case, he’d be able to sneak either into the garage clubhouse or the hut and place the magazine in its intended spot. We had an old Lego carrying case about the size of a briefcase that held all of our porn. At first it was in the back of the garage, but that flooded and ruined a whole stack of them. We figured they’d be safer in the hut, but forgot that even in the summer it still rains. Another stack was ruined not long after.

Hiding physical magazines full of naked girls is really hard when you’re 10 years old.

One issue that we took the best care of was June 1994—one of Jenny McCarthy’s centerfold appearances. We were mesmerized by her in every possible way. It’s probably the issue that we held on to the longest—with one of the Pamela-Anderson-in-her-prime issues coming in at a close second.

Those magazines lived in that Lego briefcase for a long time and they become some of our most prized possessions right next to my Don Mattingly rookie, 60+ Bo Jackson card collection and still-in-the-package Princess Leia in Bounty Hunter Gear toy. Only I couldn't really show the magazines to anyone other than our friend Nick, who we let in on our secret stash when he moved up from West Valley.

To this day, that stretch of my childhood where Jenny McCarthy was all I thought about is the only time that I have ever given a single fuck about anything to do with Jenny McCarthy.

Friday, January 3, 2014


Last month I asked you guys to find me an IBM Selectric typewriter like Hunter S. Thompson used to write on. None of you came through. It's okay though. I found one on KSL last night.

Now, if I can just figure out how to adjust the 'return' key so it shifts all the way back to the left margin, I'll be set. Other than that, it works great. She had five extra ribbons still in the box and an extra font roller-ball-thing, too. Best $45 I've spent in a while.

The lady that I bought it from asked me what I was going to do with it, and I had to think about it for a second.

I've grown so used to falling back on auto correct, predictive text, spell check and all those other fancy helpers and I don't want that to be the case anymore. Typing on this will help me become a more efficient speller (I hope) and better at typing.

It's not red like Thompson's, but I think that's about the only downfall.

Who wants a letter?

Thursday, January 2, 2014


Henry Rollins will forever be one of my idols.

I've been thinking a lot about this kind of thing, and it's nice to see it laid out like this. It's a good story. Lots of hard work (and a lot of luck) made this guy into what he is today. It's a path that I need to follow. Maybe not the 'singing for a band' part though. I already did my time on the road. It was fun, but I'm glad it's over.

Check out the video and start thinking about what you want to get out of your life this year.