Blog Summary

A blog for poetry, prose, and pop culture.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Live Free or Die Hard

Hey all!

Caught the new Die Hard tonight and I can say with absolute resonance that the summer doldrums are broken. Live Free r Die Hard was everything I was hoping to get out of this movie. Tons of great action sequences, the best man vs woman fist fight I have EVER seen, and plenty of the old John McClane witty banter. Don't get me wrong, Die Hard 4 is TOTALLY over the top, but its presented in such a way that they never take it to far out of the realm of possibility. Sure they stretch the boundaries of the realm, but not much more than With a Vengeance did with the semi truck water tunnel sequence. I am sure you saw in the preview with McClane taking out the helicopter with his car and fighting the F-35 jet, they pushed a little more CG than we may come to expect from the gritty old school style of the previous films, but considering today's movie market place, I feel they did an excellent job on the movie.

Willis is great even in his 50's really making us remember why McCLane is such a great character, and remembering why it was Bruce Willis that created the action genre we know today. You get all the good and all the bad in one wisecracking package, and its definitely worth your $9.00 for a ticket.

I also had worried that the PG-13 rating would take away from the movie, but honestly I didn't really notice the language (or lack hereof) in the movie, and they toned down some of the more gruesome images of McClane killing the bad guys, but nothing I would comment to have a negative impact on the film.

The supporting cast was good. Justin Long as the nerdy tech guy (not too much of a stretch) and Timothy Olyphant as the bad guy was a perfect bit of casting. A guy like Olyphant, who is criminally underrated, can pull of the more traditional bad guy role of the Die Hard films, thief covering his own intentions with a bigger picture. This film isn't breaking new ground, but it doesn't need to.Its great the way it is.

My only complaint would be the god-like powers the hackers have, though it's a minor one. Precedence is pretty much set that a hacker in any movie can do anything in just a few seconds and Live Free is no exception. Once you accept that.. just enjoy the action as Bruce Willis does what he does best, get the shit kicked out of him kill some bad guys and crack some wise.

I really hope that this film does well, I'd love to see Willis reprise the role one more time and take the franchise full circle. Each movie has opened the field of play a bit more, Die Hard was just 1 guy in an office building, Die Harder was opened up to a full airport, With a Vengeance sees McClane all over NYC, and Live Free finds McClane all over the upper eastern seaboard. I'd love for them to strip down the film 1 more time and rekindle the one man against the odds in a small space again. But let's face it, as long as the movies re well made I am gonna keep watching.

I'll try to hit another update tommorrow with a rundown on my quick trip to Flagstaff.

Yippee-ki-yay mother fucker!

End of Line.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Assorted Nuts...

Hey all.

Haven't gotten a good read on my next poem yet but I thought I would relate a few small items.

Registered for the San Diego Comic Con yesterday. I have been to every con in San Diego except one since 1992. I am a huge comic book buff and my pal Jason and I make it a point to go every year. This year especially will see some peopel in attendance that I haven't had a great chance to really meet. James Jean, Kent Williams among others. I also want to show Tara McPherson my tattoo of her work, hopefully she will like it. The tatttoo , by the way, is coming along. Most of the redness has faded and its peeling. The sading is really light and despite the need of a few touch ups, its looking pretty good.

Back to the con, autographs have been a low priority at the con the last few years, though I have a few art books and trades that I will probably take. Mostly I will be on the lookout for new trades or art books that I don't have. Also pehaps a few foreign trades of interest. I picked up a great looking western book called Angela from Olivere Vatine and Daniel Pecqueur from France. It has really great visual story telling and flow, and I find it a good tool to help with pacing and flow. If you can convey a story without the words, its a really good feat. I'll be on the lookout for more.

Jason, who is close to signing a deal to do some inking, has let me do some more fills for the next project he is working on. I am really appreciative of him trusting me enoough to help out. I am not fool enough to think that I am doing something that he couldn't do with greater aplomb or skill, but that he lets me help is awesome. To be imvolved, even slightly, in the process of creating a comic book, something that has been a big part of my life for so long, is really awesome. I can't wait to get some more work.

Been trying to fill the rest of my time reading, bought a large cache of science fiction books and the like and have been belting through them. I can speed read and sometimes I can plow through a book too fast. Of the 10 books I have picked up over the last three weeks, I am down to 2, a couple of Hellboy novels that I wanted to save for San Diego next month, I just underestimated how quickly I would get through the other 8. I know that I am not so foolish as to think that I won't have the 7th Harry Potter finished ( I already pre-ordered it) within the first day. (It ships on the 21st...yeah.. geek) I do recommend checking out James Rollins if you are a Dan Brown or Clive Cussler fan of action adventure.

My brother and Jason also signed me up for a MySpace account. I don't know if I should keep it up as I don't think I have the desire to maintain two websites.. Anyone have any suggestions?

That about sums up these quick hits.... look forward to posting again soon.

End of Line.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

New Concepts

Hey all.

Wanted to leave a quick update tonight. When I started this blog it was with the intention of getting myself writing again, and creating some stories, if only for me at least. That has been something I have not focused on and I am making efforts to repair that matter. I started working on a story bible, just a notebook where I can keep notes and jot down story ideas when they come to me. My goal is to start taking it with me where I go so when something i like comes to me, I can commit it to paper before I forget.

I have three story ideas right now. A World War 2 story, a classic western tale, and a concept I am thinking about revisiting. A while back my roommate Jason and I started to kick around some story concepts to potentially self publish a comic book. Well, with him close to getting contract work with a comic company, I think I need to start to develop this idea on my own. Take what I worked out then and meld it forward. Its an amalgamation of all the things I really enjoy, westerns, science fiction, and fantasy..with a little steampunk. I like that it gives me a broad range of story ideas and can keep things interesting. I can go epic in scope, or keep a simple gritty western revenge tale. A combination of swords, guns, technology and magic will keep for a variety of character and story ideas. I am excited to get started.

It starts with the bible though.. getting characters and locations at least roughed out before actually getting to the meat. Anyway that's what's going on with me. As I start to develop some more concrete ideas I'll post some updates on them. I also will try to get to another poem on my next post. Thanks for reading.

End of Line.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Summer Movies

Hey all.

Thought I would finally post about the summer movie rundown. Boy, what a bunch of turds.

It actually pains me to say that Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer was the best one I have seen so far. My expectations were low going in and that may have helped, but considering its family based market approach, it wasn't that bad. I could have done without the scene with Mr. Fantastic in the club dancing with the girls, but it stayed solid and short, something many of the movies this summer have gotten away from. They could have beefed up the Thing's role too, but I thought they did a good job in developing the Torch, Invisible Woman, and Mr. F. The Silver Surfer was solid and Doom was much better this time around, closer to the Doom of the comics and not the first movie.

Pretty much everything else has been low average to disappointing. Pirates 3 was better than 2, but too long and too over the the top. The story rambled and it felt like they were trying to tie both Orlando Bloom and Kiera Knightly into a story that didn't really need them. Ocean's 13 was ALSO better than 2, but that's not saying much. Sort of 2 hours of watching a bunch of actors try to look cool and be suave, and Pacino chew through scenery like Orson Welles at a buffet. All te actors seemed bored with the movie, just like I was.

Spiderman 3 was the biggest disappointment so far. Raimi has been so solid in his first 2 I thought he had this in the bag. The film comes across like it was 2 separate movies spliced into one. The movie Raimi wanted with the Sandman, and the movie the studios wanted with Venom. The films villains needed to be fleshed out more, like they did with the Goblin and Doc Ock in the first 2. Really give them motivation behind their reasons. Venom needed to be its own movie. Peter's descent to the darker impulses should have taken a lot more time and been better built up. Not with a terribly cheesy Saturday Night Fever montage and a bad dance off at MJ's work. I expected more. Here is hoping the right the ship with 4.

Shrek 3 seemed very average too. It didn't have the range of appeal the first one had, nor and influx of really great characters like the second one. It was a movie made on coast power. People will watch it because the first 2 were good. I do know that I won't be getting it ob DVD (Yeah yeah.. I will own Spidey and Pirates 3.. I'm hoping further sequels will pay off.)

I am really hoping that Live Free or Die Hard pays off. I love the first 3 and the trailers look pretty kick ass so far. I am really ready for a shoot'em up action flick right now. I also feel that Harry Potter 5 looks strong. The Bourne Ultimatum also looks good, the first 2 in that franchise looked good. Transformers continues to plummet in stock for me, but I guess we will see.

Hope you liked the recap.

End of Line.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Inked In...

Hey all!

This will mark my 11th post for me this month. I'm much happier with my consistency this month... let's hope that I can keep up the tradition into July.

The big update is that I finally broke down and got a tattoo! I know my brother thought that I was all talk and would never go through with it. Yet here I am. I got a great image from Tara McPherson that I mentioned in my earlier post. I attached the basic picture here on the blog so that everyone can see. It's on the right side of my right leg and stretches from just under the knee to the top of my ankle.

I'll admit I was a bit concerned as to the amount of pain that it would cause.. and I think my estimation was about right.. it didn't feel good! But I think I did okay. Well okay, I did probably yelp and curse more than I would have cared to admit. Though no tears! My friend Bill made a good point, as I figured that if a girl could do it without crying.. I should be able too.. I'm a man for God's sake! Bill said that men are built for blunt pain.. punching impact injuries.. By nature of well nature girls are built better or sharp pains.. i.e. child birth, something I have often referred to as containing sharp pains. One thing that seemed strange to everyone is that I found the opposite things to be true in regards to what hurt more. The outline (what I was told would be the worst) was okay.. I flinched a few times around the top of the ankle and let few expletives out. The shading, which mos people told me wasn't bad, sucked the most. Lots of quick sharp pains. They also said that it would hurt over the next few days but it really hasn't unless I hit it hard against something.Bill didn't get one, though he has an appointment next week to take care of his in Flagstaff.

My tattoo artist was really excited by the subject matter and the chance to do the piece. I really can't wait for the redness to go away so I can see what it will really look like. We added some shading (something my art major friend Jason was against) as the tattoo looked incomplete without it.. not quite right. Here's hoping that I am 100% right as time passes on. Hell.. let's hope that I don't regret it as time goes on!! So the attached image is pretty much dead on with the little bit of light gray shading. It's too red right now to really notice any of it though!

Caught a few more movies that I hope to hit up on the next post along with more info on a possible new job. Thanks.

End of Line.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

True Story Time: Father's Day Edition!

Hey all and a Happy father's Day to everyone.

I thought I would post a true story about my dad... one of my favorite stories to tell about him because its damn funny.

My father had gotten engaged to my step mom and decided that he was going to sell his house. That was the house that for the most part my brother and myself had grown up in and he had been reticent to sell it until then. But as he was starting a new life with his fiance you can't live in the house that your ex-wife picked out. Too much baggage.

So the two of them, with help from my brother and myself when we could started fixing the place up to sell. My Dad had agreed to rent it out for like a year or so before he came to this decision and the renters really ran the place down. Especially the backyard. It was overgrown with weeds that were five feet tall at least. It was a jungle of weeds, untrimmed trees, and dog shit. My Dad was gonna tear up the back yard.. seed it with grass and clean out the area where he had put rocks in when he was still living there.

So he and my step-mom, Sherry, were in the back yard tilling the ground and my Dad was using a pickax to turn up the soil. At some point Sherry looked over at my Dad and blood was streaming down his leg and out of a puncture would through his pant leg. My Dad had stabbed himself in the leg with a pickax... and HE DIDN'T EVEN FEEL IT!!

Sherry freaks out and tells my Dad that they are going to the hospital... here is where I should mention that Sherry lives on the east side of town in Tempe and my Dad's about as far west as you can get (at the time ) on the outskirts of Peoria. So she is in such a panic my Dad had to drive himself to the hospital. He took a towel and tried unsuccessfully to stem the blood flow. So they hopped in the car and headed out.

My Dad walks into the ER and the nurse on duty goes a little pale and rushes him in. Everyone starts going over to help him. Now my Dad is wondering why everyone is so concerned but he goes along with it, even stopping the on Duty nurse from cutting his pants off as he," Needs to wear them again tomorrow to finish yard work." Those were the rattiest jeans even before this incident. He actually got up and took them off. The doc gets in there and by the time they are ready the wound has closed up on itself... they didn't give hm stitches or anything.. just cleaned it off and told him to get dressed.

Now my Dad walk to hit the restroom and sees himself in the mirror. His whole body is covered in blood, face arms, head, hands, everywhere. It looked like he fucking killed somebody. He figures as he was driving he got it over himself while smoking and smoothing his hair out. Probably wiping sweat off too. He also figured that was why everyone was freaking out when he walked in... looking like an extra from Reservoir Dogs.

Damn who stabs themselves in the leg with a fucking pickax and doesn't notice. Only my Dad.

Dad... You are the greatest man I have ever known and I hope to one day be even a fraction of the man you are. I love you Dad.

End of Line.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

True Story Time!

Hey all,

Time for my last really good bathroom tale. This happened after the Wal-Mart grope job that I talked about and after the incident in the bar with the guy telling me to check out his junk. I am down in Tempe at some kind of Chuckie Cheese place, it had an indoor cart racer course and a kiddie rock wall.. along with a ton of games. My step niece was having a birthday and my step mom had flown in from Ohio to celebrate it with her and I went down to meet them after I got off work. We were all having a good time when i had to go the bathroom.

I looked around for a bathroom and didn't see one. I continued looking until I finally saw a little boy, maybe 8 or so head into the toilet. I followed him and went directly into the stall as per normal for me. The stall was like right beside the entrance. I took a piss and came out of the stall. NOW is when I noticed something was amiss. There certainly seemed to be a lot of women in this bathroom. It immediately hit me that I entered the wrong restroom and my only thought at the time was to loudly swear," SHIT!" I quickly cut bait and left the bathroom.

About 5 minutes after the incident I was still feeling embarrassed when the manager came up to me requesting that I leave as several of the women had registered a complaint against me. I told him my excuse for doing so. Which I think I should mention here to help somewhat give cause for entering the wrong room, if not forgiveness. First off, it didn't have a door.. it was one of those open hallway type of entrances. In fact it was situated on a corner in a cut out fashion, so there is an opening like a square cut into the corner of the wall where to walls meet. Damn I hope that makes sense.

That's the best way I can describe it. Now i came in from the left side. The label from the bathroom was on the right wall, completely around the corner. I also explained that I only use stalls, though I didn't feel that this was a good time to explain exactly WHY I did. I also didn't confess to following a young boy into the toilet as I didn't feel that would help my case either. I think the manager understood where I was coming from, or at least he said he did, but I still had to leave. I told him I understood, I just needed to tell my step mom. He said okay. So I go over to my step mom and this is exactly how the conversation went.
(BTW my step-mom's name is Sherry)

"Hey Sherry!"
"Oh my God Gerrad, did you hear about that pervert in the women's restroom?!"
"Yeah that was me, Listen I gotta go."

Ahhh the look on her face made it almost worth it.

Anyway.. kicked out of a kiddie pizza joint for pissing in the girls toilet. How does so much shit happen to one guy in a fucking bathroom?"

Hope you enjoyed that one.. its one of my favorites.

End of Line.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007


Hey all,

I know I promised another true story time, but I promise to get to that on my next post. I wrote this poem in a splurt of inspiration tonight. I have noticed a trend melancholy and broken heartedness in my last few poems. It's a different sort of perception for me as I haven't really felt broken heartedness, but I think the topics of loneliness or sadness are pretty universal. Some of it is definitely stemming from my reflections on my unhappiness at work and in my personal life choices, some of it I think in my recent studies of some of Tara McPherson's work in her Lonely Hearts art book. Those things are common subjects in her art, and it's always a plus to go with feelings and instincts that motivate you strongly.

I tried to do some different things with structure and measure in this poem than in many of my other attempts. The reading of this poem in my mind (and I feel that each poem should be read in a measure that the reader determines) had a definite rhythm that affected how I wrote it. The commas are an intended pause in reading of the poem, sort of a tool to lend more weight to the words. It also just helped with what I feel is how the poem is presented.. to me at least.

Hope you enjoy.


Fading further from my mind.

It's getting harder to remember, all the time.

Searching for a thought I just can't, find.

I can't recall the way you, felt.

Or the fragrance of how you smelled.

It's a bitter hand I've been dealt.

I just carry on alone.

An unknown path, left to roam.

You were all I'd ever known.

These moments that we once, shared.

A hollow space devoid of all my cares,

Left wide open, every thing's been bared.

The calendar marks another day's, pass.

The memories keep tumbling out way too fast.

Like falling grains of sand in the hourglass.

I'd give anything to be back with her,

Hearken back to the way things were.

But now I'm just a victim, of erasure.

End of Line.

Monday, June 11, 2007

True Story Time!

Hey all..

I promised to post another true story, so I thought I should spread the wealth on a few more tales from public bathrooms. In a post some time back I commented on how I got felt up in a Wal-Mart bathroom when I used the urinal. Needless to say its really turned me off the concept of the urinal and I stick to the stall.

About seven or eight months after the incident, I was at one of my favorite watering holes, Old Chicago in Peoria. My friend Bill and myself were having a few beers and generally enjoying ourselves. I get up to use the head after having five or six beers. Now I always go to the stall.. but I walked in and the bathroom was empty. There were three urinals along one wall.. and the far left urinal was boxed in by the wall and the partition door to to the stall, so there was only one path to the urinal and you were protected on three sides. So I opted for the urinal.. I figured, "What are the odds that something will happen again?"

As soon as I start relieving myself another drunk patron barrels in the room and uses the urinal next to me.. totally ignoring the unwritten rule about leaving an empty toilet between yourself and another guy when applicable. As soon as he starts relieving himself he uses his free hand to start slapping my shoulder.. and I swear on a stack of Bibles, to "Check out my dick man. Check this shit out. Its so small.. how am I gonna work with this?"

Now I am trapped in the corner with this guy blocking the aisle and repeatedly asking me to check out his junk. Mind you this is the first time I have used a urinal since the Wal-Mart incident. Finally I tell him, "Yeah man that sucks." Then I sorted squeezed by him and bolted for the door. Seriously.. what kind of guy his this kind of luck in a bathroom?

I got one more true bathroom tale that I'll post in my next update, about the time I got kicked out of a Chuckie Cheese (or at least a Chuckie Cheese type restaurant.)

Remember, always lock the stall door.

End of Line.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

TV Guide

Hey all!

thought I would do a quick post on the end of the regular TV season. There are so many good shows that without a DVR i don't think anyone could keep up with them all.
Let's start off with the good.
Heroes- That's how you build a series. A solid stretch of episodes in the season. It gave us both questions and answers and kept you wanting more the entire time. I did feel the that the final battle with Sylar was a little weak, I was really looking for a powerful showdown, like the hinted in the Days of Future Past episode a few weeks previous. I still thought though that they set up next season with just enough to keep you amped for more, but gave you enough closure that you feel sedated by it. I can't wait for the next season. Coupled with that the Heroes: Origins mini series that is supposed to take place this summer, that should significantly increase my anticipation with a slate of new characters that may get added to the ongoing show. That's a great ideas swiped straight out of the comic books!

Lost- I came to Lost late, I didn't get into the series until about a month before season 3 started. I watched all of season 1 and 2 on DVD, and I personally think that season 3 was the strongest. It gave you much needed answers, why Locke was in the wheelchair, where those fucking polar bears came from, who the Others really are, Ben's secret origin. As well it posed more questions, who is Jacob, what is the smoke monster, how can Locke heal so easily on the island, is Juliet really a good guy, how is Walt back? All great questions. And the killer season ending with the island sequences being flashbacks and the scenes with jack being real time.. WOW that threw me for a loop.
I was sad to see so many character losses this season, Charlie, especially as he had really become a great character. I think I understand why they wrote him out though.. he had come full circle and found redemption on the island.. just like Eko. They really couldn't take his character anywhere but backwards. Besides thsi opens up the exploration of these new characters, Juliet, Ben, Desmond. 2008 can't come to soon!

I also thought that BattleStar Galactica had a great season finale. In sitcom news I really want to see more of My Name is Earl (good cliffhanger!) The Office (most painfully funny show on TV) and How I Met Your Mother.

The bad.
The series ending of my beloved Gilmore Girls. Such a bold and well written show that really transcended its CW stereotype. I am truly sad to see it end.

Veronica Mars. As I last read it was cancelled and unless the network goers with the flash forward to Veronica's CIA days.. I think the shows done. That's a damn shame too.. its smart, witty, and so acerbic... they don't make shows like this on TV.. for me it was a better version of TVs Buffy the Vampire Slayer.. less fan boy and more real life appeal.

Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip- A smart show brought to you by the guy who makes smart shows, Aaron Sorkin... this should have been a success, smart scripts, good actors, a good time slot.. and its failed... I have been enjoying the finals episodes that they are airing on Thursdays now.. but it just seems like they paid good money for the episodes and they are airing them as they have nothings better on then. Oh well.

I've also bitched enough about Fox cancelling Drive. Fox has so little that appeals to me anymore.. without the Simpsons or Family Guy I don't think I'd watch the network at all. I must be one of the few who really HATES American Idol..

Anyway that's my TV update....
Hope to post another True Story Time in a few days....Oh and I added a link to Penny-arcade.. a really funny webcomic that I enjoy.. I am gonna add a few other website s that are part of my daily routine...keep an eye out.

End of Line.

Thursday, June 07, 2007


Hey all.

Wanted to post this poem that I finally finished today. I have been working on it on and off for truthfully a few years, the colors and concepts at least. I finally came up with a workable pattern using the couplets instead of trying to make every line feature a color. It was important for me to use as many colors as i could, to at least give the poem some measure of frame, though I did cut out a few colors that I feel didn't progress anything of merit.

Anyway I hope you like it, I am really happy with the way it turned out.
One more quick thing, on my last few posts the spellcheck is still buggy, so please forgive any errors I may have made. Thanks.


I saw in colors everywhere.

Now shades of gray stain all that's fair.

Your rose red lips did passion kiss,

Now thier gentle brush will go amiss.

Those yellow locks of hair bound tress,

Here brushed away with last caress.

Deep blue eyes once filled with life.

Now find me here left arife.

That favored soft dress, pale purple with pleat.

Under crossed hands lie still heart beat.

An orange tined sky at sun's set,

Here your gathered friends have met.

Green of grass and brown of Earth

Soon will covet all that's worth.

Words scribed 'neath white marble slate,

To meet again at saintly gold gate.

End of Line.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Daily Grind

Hey all....

Another post in a quick span, doing much better this month. My goal was at least 8 posts this mnth to make up for the lack of posting in May so I think we are on a good track.

Dropped of my resume the other day and was hoping for an interview, but Bed, Bath and Beyond said they would pass my resume along. Carmen, my good friend Bill's wife, manages one in Flagstaff and she really likes it. My thinking is that its less hours with better money then I'll like it too. I also know that worse case scenario once I'm out of McDonalds for 6 months I can go to work for McDonalds product distributors. I have an in there with my former boss who said he would take me in an instant. I just need to get the hell out. I really hate my job right now.

I am also going to check out a tattoo parlor today. A tattoo is something that I have thought about for years but I could never committ to anything that I want to have on my body forever. If I had gotten a tattoo 10 years ago I would probably have a Dragonball Z or terrible late 90's comic book tattoo, things I would hate today. Looking now, my tastes have changed and I realized that art, or a piece of art you like would probably maintain its appeal years later. I have really been digging on an artist named Tara McPherson the last year or so and she has a great piece called Tree Girl that would look killer as a tattoo. I'm definately going with it on my leg, as it provides a postion to conceal or display itself by whatever pants you wear.

I think i'm having an early mid-life crisis. I drive a sports car, I'm changing jobs, getting tattoos, going to concerts.. all a big change of pace from the last few years of rested docility.

Anyway thats about it for today...

End of Line.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Concert Time : Social Distortion / Buck-O-Nine & Mustard Plug

Until this year it had been .. well a long time, my guess is around 2000 or 200, since I went to a concert. I've never been a big music guy. Oh sure,,, I mean there are tons of songs that I like and I use the hell out of my IPOD, but I have never been big on buying music or owning CDs and other than a few college years in the late 90's, I never really attended that many concerts. The last concert I went to before 2007, was Weird Al Yankovic with my brother and Dad at the AZ State Fair after my folks bitter divorce.

This year though, my friend Bill talked me into attending a show, The Swingin' Utters. A small punk rock band that has a few songs I like.. though admitedly they don't come up on the IPOD that often. I feel I should point out for reference sake that about 95% of my IPOD music came from Bill or my brother, both big CD guys. (Hell I don't even own a real CD.) Anyway we went to the show and I gotta say... I had an excellent time. A few beers and some fun music really made me glad I went.

Stemming from that incident, early in May Social Distortion was playing a show up in Flagstaff, where Bill lives. I really like Social Distortion.. they have a ton of great songs and I have always heard they tear down the house on a live show. So I drove up there for a 2 day weekend (in the middle of the week to be sure.. but it was my work weekend!) Social D put on a fucking great show playing almost all thier big hits.. though not I Was Wrong... but it was still cool as I got to hear Prison Bound and Ball and Chain.. my favorites. Hell, thier rendition of Johnny Cash's Ring of Fire was GREAT! I am really glad I saw them and the next time they are coming through I am 100% gonna hit that show again. Its the only time I felt justified spending $25 on a knit hat just so I could have some reminder of when I was their,

The last show I saw was also in May, 5 bands for $12.00. The three openers were pretty boring, Mingus Dew, Captain Squeegee and the Soap Suds, and another band that escapes me now.It was just more music to drink to. The final 2 acts were Buck-O-Nine and Mustard Plug. Two great ska bands back on tour after a long hiatus. Punk and ska are typically my music of choice.. and the ska scene is pretty dreary right now so any oppertunity to support these acts were welcome. I really like Mustard Plug.. they have a huge array of songs I really like and they hit most fof the big ones.. though not my favorite.. You. Buck-O-Nine were incredible. They stuck to thier bread and butter album 28 Teeth. Peppering in other great jams like my two favorite songs,,, Water in my Head and Irish Drinking Song. The consensus was that Buck should have closed with thier energy and stage presence.. they electrified the crowd. Though don't get me wrong, Mustard Plug was awesome too.

Anyway.. there is a look at the concerts I have hit this year. Next month is Reel Big Fish and Less Than Jake. Shoould be fun!

Oh.. one two more things.. it was pointed out by Jason that he actually got a replica 9mm.. not a 45 as I mesntioned in my prevous post. Also blogger spellcheck seems to be acting up right now and I can't get it to work. I am going to proofread it carefully but I don't want to retype this later so please give me a break on any spelling errors. Thanks

End of Line.

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Pop Culture Palooza!

As promised, I'm posting today on the pop culture tournament I entered yesterday. I had a lot of fun with the contest. It was done in the vein of the World Series of Pop Culture, with 3 man teams competing with each other for a grand prize of $250.00. Our team consisted of my friend Bill, who drove in from about 2 hours away from Flagstaff, Autumn, my roommates girlfriend, and myself. My brother was going to entered but backed out at the last minute.

I was given a late start time by the employees at the comic book store that I go to so we were the last ones there, and I think that's why we had to play two times in the first round. Autumn bailed us out on the first game where I got eliminated early, pulling cast members of the TV show Cheers out of the depth of her knowledge. She also owned the second player on both boy bands AND 80's fashion. She was great.

Bill decided as the member with the most limited amount of pop culture trivia he would take the bullets on categories that we didn't feel confident on. He had some tough categories in sports, admittedly the weakest area of our collective game. I did pretty good the second game of the first round until we got to the final tiebreaker, members of Van Halen's real name. I knew 4 of the 7 known members, unfortunately my opponent knew 6.

I'm okay to losing on a music category, I wanted Autumn and Bill in there t handle those rounds but fate didn't have it set up that way. We STILL had a great time and I am really looking forward to trying again in a few months when they start the next round. Our team, The Wizard's Sleeve will ride again!

They also had a Guitar Hero 2 tournament the same night that I entered. There was a $5.00 entry fee, with the proceeds going to the Hero Initiative, a program that helps some of the Golden and Silver Age comic book creators financially, as many of them didn't have the same benefits and royalty agreements that today's creators do. Skill wasn't the only category to take into consideration, as the ability to "Rock Out" could add much needed points to your total. Things like rock stance, jumping, behind the head playing and kicking over chairs all added points, as well as power slides and apparently Prince-style phallic gestures all added points. I hit second place, getting beat by a REALLY good player. I suck on expert and he was doing sections of the song ONE HANDED!!! Hell he had tracks so memorized that he would turn his back to the screen and play them. The grand prize was a Fender Strat guitar, but it was fun to just play.

The only other thing of note that we did yesterday was to buy Airsoft Guns on our lunch break. Somehow shooting each other in the parking lot of a mini mall with air pellets seemed like a good idea. Bill bough was is essentially the gun from the video game Metal Gear Solid, complete with attached flashlight and laser sight. Jason got a replica 45, which definitely has the most punch of the three. I got a sawed off pump action shotgun, complete with laser sight, flashlight and scope, grand total for all three was about $40. Not bad for some stupid fun. Jason thinks that if anything they will make for good reference material.

Well that about sums up my Saturday. Hope to have another post up real soon!

End of Line.

Saturday, June 02, 2007

Shallow Little Heart

Happy June!

Wow.. May was a crazy month for me. Its no excuse not to post regularly I know, and I don't want to cite the usual suspect in my 70 hour work week, so let's get down to business.

May saw a lot of really cool things happening, along with a big bad.

Let's get the bad thing out of the way. Work. This month has been especially had as we got a new regional manager and the two of us don't see eye to eye on too many things. The big problem I have is with his people skills, or his lack thereof. My boss, this new regional manager and myself were all in my store and with the three of us standing together, he would tell my supervisor to tell me how he wanted things, instead of saying things to my face, despite the fact that we were right beside each other. There are about 50 other reasons we don't get along, mostly because our styles are so different. I could deal with prick bosses, I've done it before, what I don't like is the disrespectful way he talks to my managers and my crew.

We argue so much that I started looking for anther job. I just realized I really hate coming to work, hate it so much that anything else would be better. I have my first job interview on Tuesday and I gotta say that I am a little nervous. Its been almost 15 years since I interviewed for a job and its going to mean a big lifestyle change going into a new environment. But I am really excited and I am looking forward to an opportunity to try something fresh, hell I figure that I could probably make some more cash at it too. I'll keep you posted.

I have a lot of other things that I am going to work into columns this month, just a few are the end of the TV season, summer blockbuster results so far (I have hit the big three so far but I want to wait a little into June before commenting) the summer concerts I have seen this year, and tomorrows column on the pop culture trivia contest I entered today.

I thought though for the rest of the column I would post another poem.. this one has been sitting in the banks for about a month or so and I just capped it today. Hope you enjoy.

Shallow Little Heart

It's a long way home,

And I hate the way I feel.

Left abroad these roads I roam.

Holding back from all that's real.

I want so bad to make this change.

But can't let myself go this far away.

When every target seems out of range.

I can't live or die this same old way.

Along this path there must be a way out.

To find leave from these fears new found cause.

With bravery unbound to survive once fatal rout.

And to finally leave behind all of me that once was.

To wade from that favored shore.

No more alone to find that new start.

Away from that which once did whore.

And plunge to depth this shallow little heart.

End of Line.