Category Archives: My Life

Update On My Life, Long Overdue

update 12819187_10101719927887815_5326175012757220644_o

HEY! Yes, you! This is an update!

I haven’t blogged or made any kind of update in over two years. I’ve instead focused on my screenwriting career as well as my day job, which is in post-production. Both are still major works-in-progress, and as such dominate pretty much all of my free time. When I’m not doing that, I’m at the beck and call of my three-year-old daughter. It’s a lot to do in a day, which unfortunately puts my website on the backburner. Strangely enough, I have a few post drafts I started over the years saying roughly the same thing: that it’s been “too long” and that I should “write more of these.” This is another one of those inspired moments, I suppose.

Here’s what I’ve been up to since the previous post…

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A Year of Positivity, Ya Jerks!

Happy Turtle

I’ve been frustrated with the internet, nerd culture, and fanboyism at large for awhile now. For the longest time I couldn’t really put my finger on what was rubbing me the wrong way, but then I had a lightbulb moment while listening to the Scriptnotes episode in which John and Craig discussed the idea of “positive moviegoing.” Craig set out a very interesting method to watching film that resonated with me and got me to thinking about positivity in general. I realized that a lot of what was missing from the internet, nerd culture, and fanboyism at large was just that: positivity. Somewhere along the line we forgot to enjoy shit and instead turned everything into freaking Thunderdome.

That’s why Jandy and I have decided to make 2014 our Year of Positivity. Internet culture is built on extremism and it’s become too damn much. Nerd rages? Consider us over ’em. Hysterical tirades about that one flick that ruined our childhood forever? Nuh-uh, done-zo! Check out her post. She breaks the whole thing down further and even throws in an interesting twist to the concept; she picks out a “souvenir” from her entertainment, whether she likes it or not.

In light of Scriptnotes pushing me (and ultimately us) to this concept of a positive year, I’ll probably call my “souvenir” One Cool Thing, or Cool Things About [insert title here], or MAYBE even The John And Craig Of It All.

Will this plan be executed flawlessly? Probably not. I’m still a recovering cynical bastard and that tends to slip through sometimes. What I’m hoping this does is flush out most of the negativity in my system and give me a better outlook on my entertainment.

Because at the end of the day I want to enjoy shit…you know?

Wonderful Ball of Feminine Badassery, AKA My Daughter

Karina Sleep

There’s a rule in blog-land that you aren’t supposed to take continued hiatuses and then pop in every now and again with a “wow I haven’t posted here in FOR-EV-ERRR” type of post. Well, whatever, dude. I’ve actually got a decent excuse this time around; I had a daughter. Now, your mind is probably blown to smithereens right about now. First I get married and then I up and generate spawn?

Yep.

I’ve tried to write this post at least a dozen times, waxing poetic about how this wonderful ball of feminine badassery has blessed my life to the nines, and each time I’ve hit “delete” and started anew. There’s just not a lot of words that can accurately express how I’ve felt from day one in the hospital to now, almost two months later; I say this as someone going into writing as a profession. So instead of delving into the understatement of the year territory, I’m going to give you some relevant stats about my daughter and deluge you with adorable pictures. Sound like a plan? Good, because it’s happening!

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From Inside Joke To Internet Sensation

Sausage School Title Image

Hey guys, I thought I would post this since it is relevant to my interests. It’s an interview that I did with my friend Tom for a web publication that’s kind of a big deal. They asked us a few questions about Sausage School, which Tom animates and I write. We had an absolute blast getting to the heart of what makes the show “tick” as well as giving a little history of our “genius.” With their permission I’ve included the entire article below:

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This is a Close-Up? Cartoons and Toonocracy

I’ve been a busy little bee these days. Not sure if you remember a post series of mine from awhile back where I complained about working at a web animation studio out in Chicago. The work was lousy, but it was there that I met my friend Tom Riffel and there that I developed an interest in animation. When I got let go, I immediately started thinking about what it would be like to get a bunch of people together to work on the types of cartoons that we wanted to see. There were a few ideas I tossed back and forth with Tom, but they didn’t get very far past the “idea” stage. Not only that, there just weren’t enough of us to get anything substantial off the ground.

Fast forward to the here and now in sunny California, where Tom fills me in on an interesting idea that he and a few others are working on.

Continue reading This is a Close-Up? Cartoons and Toonocracy

Stuff Happened In January

I’ve been a very bad blogger lately. The most I’ve written is a little blurb about some of the things I did in 2011, and even then that barely equated out to a page. In fact, I think that post was mostly a list-post and involved very little of what anyone would call “writing.” Truth be told, I’ve been quite the busy bee. In late December my then girlfriend and I decided to get married, something we had been discussing for a little while. To make things interesting, we scheduled our wedding for January, giving us relatively little time to plan. Surprisingly, everyone was gung-ho about the idea.

The wedding day came upon us pretty fast and before I knew it I was standing in front of a crowd of friends and family, watching my bride-to-be walk toward me down the aisle. It’s kinda crazy how everyone else seemed to fade out of the picture when Jandy took my hand; I’m sure the pictures of me can attest to that.

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My 2011 In Film

I don’t really remember when I began challenging myself to watch more films each year. It may have started when I was going to school in Chicago, or it might have been during my earlier days back in Grand Forks, North Dakota. Each year I would keep a general idea of the films I had seen and try to best it, whether by a few or by a wide margin. One year I decided to see all the Oscar contenders alongside of the films I was currently watching, something that took my movie-watching goals to the next level. The next year I added films that weren’t in my genres of interest. The year after that films during a certain decade….

I think you kind of get the idea.

Fast forward to 2011, the year I decided to keep a running tally of all the films I had seen. I had been watching my wife populate her movie list for quite some time and had wanted to do something similar, if a little less strict. What I came up with was my 2011 in Film page, where I put the posters up for all the films I had seen in 2011, dividing them by New Releases or New to Me. I also divided them up by Loves, Likes and Dislikes to give anyone who perused the page a basic idea of where I stood on the film.

Fast forward even further to the present and we’ve got this post: My 2011 in Film. I saw A LOT of movies last year and there were a few that REALLY stood out to me.

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It Was Kind Of A Big Year

Oh boy.

A lot happened in 2011. I’m still in contemplation mode, which is why I haven’t really done anything akin to last year’s Top Ten in ’10 post series. Not only that but it’s insanely difficult to come up with a clever blog series name that fits with The Year 2011. Also, a list of 11 things is kind of stupid. But I digress. I think for now I’ll just write up a list of some of the things I did this year and call it good.

THE STUFF I DID IN 2011

-Started writing for Flickchart Blog.
-Read two books (World War Z & A Game of Thrones)
-Started doing bar trivia with a bunch of my former Columbia College alums.
-Met my girlfriend’s parents.
-Left my work-from-home job to go work for a little company called TOMS Shoes.
-Saw Broken Social Scene in concert.
-Took a road trip with my girlfriend to Oregon to meet the family for the first time.
-Got into AFI Fest 2011 with a press pass.
-Moved into a new apartment with this fella and this lady.
-Cut cable out of the budget (good riddance)
-First Christmas away from my family, stayed with my girlfriend’s family.
-Joined the dark side and got an iPad 2.
Saw a total of 103 films, 57 of which were in theaters.
-Got engaged to my girlfriend.

What did YOU do this year? Sound off in the comments. I’d like to share in the tears and the triumph and stuff…

He Says, She Says: Wayne’s World

I’d like to take full credit for this idea, but I can’t. All the credit goes to my girlfriend Jandy, who thought this up quite some time ago. The premise is simple: we make each other watch films that have impacted us in some way and then post our thoughts on them in a joint blog series. Since we’ve been making each other watch films already, adding the blogging element was an easy next step. We’re still working out the format some in terms of who posts when or who goes first, but the general idea will be to have these posts on both of our sites.

The Movie

Movie: Wayne’s World
Info: 1992 USA. Director: Penelope Sheeris. Starring: Mike Myers, Dana Carvey, Tia Carrere, Rob Lowe.
Chooser: Jonathan
Date and Method Watched: December 3rd, at home via Zune rental on Xbox Live

Continue reading He Says, She Says: Wayne’s World

I Totally Love Hate Android

Androidsucksnotmaybe

I complain about Android a lot. You really only have to find the nearest social network and check the first page on my profile to see some new issue I have with the mobile OS. I’ve pretty much lamented everything from fragmentation to the lack of screencapping (without root) as well as everything in between. Lest this outspokenness be construed as simple dislike or at worst Apple Fanboyism, I’d like to offer you a nice and tidy list of the things I love and hate about Android. It’s not a comprehensive list by any means, but I feel like it should give you some perspective the next time you see me flailing my arms and ranting about the next big thing that “super sucks” about Android.

WHAT I LOVE ABOUT ANDROID

The Notification Tray

I like that there’s a notification tray at the top of my phone and that everything I need to know that’s urgent goes there. I’ve seen the popup notifcations in iOS and I can’t say that’s something that appeals to me. Granted, I have an SMS popup app, but that’s because I like being able to quickly respond to texts from friends. I also like that I can quickly see the progress of my apps that are updating while I browse the web or do something else. What’s even cooler is that I can expand the notification tray and remove all the notifications from the tray if I so choose.

The Third-Party Apps That Get It Right

iOS apps are known for how elegant and glossy they look while retaining functionality. There are some Android apps out there that have taken this to heart recently and have made their Android counterparts comparable in design and functionality. It’s apps like these that make excited for what the OS can do. Foursquare and GoWalla are two shining examples on that front as well as Evernote, Angry Birds, Facebook and Twitter. And then there are the apps that don’t have iOS equivalents that manage to stand out or add functionality to Android. Stuff like Launcher Pro or Folder Organizer Lite or even Widgetsoid.

Access To The File System

I love being able see all the files on my phone and being able to do whatever I want with them. I love that I can throw a resume/script/story/song onto my phone to have with me at a whim. If it’s there I can access it like I would on my PC or Mac. It’s one of the big things I would miss if I were to pack up and move over to iOS tomorrow.

WHAT I (OPPOSITE OF) LOVE ABOUT ANDROID

The “Results May Vary By Phone” Factor

Android has come a long way and this gripe of mine has become less and less of a problem. But still, I read story after story of one phone having a set of problems while another phone has a completely different set of problems. I’ve been told on numerous occasions that if I want the most consistent Android experience I should go with the Nexus line of phones from Google itself. Why does it take an inquisition into the tech pool to find out what I’m getting when I go into a multi-year contract for an Android phone? Shouldn’t “it just work?”

The Ugly Third-Party Apps

While there are some great Android counterparts to some iOS apps, by and large a lot of the apps are underdeveloped and lacking in many modern/key features. Stuff like GetGlue or Miso are fairly easy examples of this as they have significant lag between the Android and iOS versions. It’s tough to want to use my version of the app when a much better version is being used next to me. I fully understand and respect that it takes time and resources to develop for two different OS’s, but I’d rather have no app than a crippled one.

The Rooting/Jailbreak Disease

Rooting/Jailbreaking your phone has become insanely easy these days. All you need to do is plug in the USB cord to your computer and run some software. It’s also become much easier to undo said Rooting/Jailbreaking in case you need to return your phone to the store or [insert random reason here]. Frankly, I think Rooting/Jailbreaking is bullshit and the time spent doing this could be spent making better apps or fighting to get Android/iOS to improve. I’d rather that both Android and iOS “just work” and I’d rather these platforms compete on aesthetic and not functionality.