Wednesday, December 24, 2008


I hope you all made it on the 'Nice' list this year, and that the jolly fat guy (no, not Rip Taylor) brings you everything on your list!

Happy holidays to you and yours!

Thursday, December 18, 2008


As you may or may not know, I worship the ground Michael Chabon walks on. A man who crafts words like a painter does brush strokes, Chabon always manages to create vivid imagery and dispense flowery language with ease, like a walking Thesaurus. His Pulitzer Prize winning novel The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay has long been considered the best book I've ever read, and it always appears at the top of any favorite book list I concoct (if you're ever looking for a sprawling epic about escapism and comic books, look no further).

"Secret Skin" is an essay The New Yorker ran last March, where Chabon takes the image of a young child tying a red towel around his neck - transforming into a superhero with the simple addition of terrycloth to his attire - and creates a fascinating study on the necessity of superhero costumes, and what they mean to children and comic book idolization.

"One knew, of course, that it was not the red cape any more than it was the boots, the tights, the trunks, or the trademark “S” that gave Superman the ability to fly. That ability derived from the effects of the rays of our yellow sun on Superman’s alien anatomy, which had evolved under the red sun of Krypton. And yet you had only to tie a towel around your shoulders to feel the strange vibratory pulse of flight stirring in the red sun of your heart."

You can read the whole essay HERE.

There's a portion of the essay that speaks about cosplay, or the action of dressing up like a superhero at conventions or public functions. I really only mention it so that I can post this kick-ass photo of Brent and I with 'Thor.'

Until next time,

Thursday, December 11, 2008


I need a little motivation. Something to get me fired up in the morning, as I plug away at a new project, its deadline speeding towards me both fast and furious (more on this in a later post). Well, I found the perfect motivational video. Much like montages and the 'slow clap' (which makes a cameo here), the motivational speech is a film staple. What follows is a mash-up of forty different speeches in just over two minutes. I know it inspired me. Enjoy!

Until next time,

Wednesday, December 10, 2008


Tonight at the Riverview Theater (the same theater I championed for its inexpensive tickets and snacks - including Dots) is the cast and crew screening of Into Temptation, the film I worked on this past summer. I am very proud of this film, and excited that I could help director (and all around great guy) Patrick Coyle share his vision and create an amazing film. Every actor delivered a powerful performance. Jeremy Sisto, Kristin Chenoweth, and Brian Baumgartner are actors who exemplify what you hope every Hollywood actor is like: professional, humorous, and hard working. The crew worked their tails off, and every day I was in awe of their commitment and work ethic.

I cannot wait to see the final product, and to show the film to the world.

Until next time,

EDIT: The film exceeded my already high standards. Everyone involved should be very proud.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008


Every so often, I run across a book I used to have in my collection, but for some reason or another, have misplaced. At the library yesterday, I was perusing the shelves when I stumbled on Now You See It by Richard Matheson. Matheson, for those of you unfamiliar, is a horror heavyweight, penning stories like I Am Legend, Duel, and Stir Of Echoes. He was also a driving force behind some of the best Twilight Zone episodes, most notably 'Nightmare at 20,000 Feet'.

Now You See It is the story of an elderly, paraplegic magician (yep, you read that right) who has gathered his family and friends for a night of prestidigitation, and of course, murder! Brimming with twists and tricks, the book reads like a William Castle flick, with similarities to the classic House on Haunted Hill.

If you can find a copy, I suggest picking it up. And if it has my name inside it, you better hand it over, sucker!


Monday, December 8, 2008


The end of Battlestar Galactica draws near! Good Gods, I love this show. It brings out the complete geek in me. And it's all coming to an end. The final episodes begin on January 16th.

So, as a way to catch up, the SciFi Channel offers this wonderful "Catch The Frak Up" video. It's a comprehensive rundown of what's happened so far (and you get to hear Starbuck use her 'Micro Machine Man' voice).

In other, related news, check out this kick-ass video for the Battlestar Galactica board game. The game is brought to you by Fantasy Flight Games, the same fellas who created Midnight Chronicles. The video was put together entirely by my good friends Keith Hurley and Jason Beaudoin. Enjoy!

Frakkin' awesome!

Thursday, December 4, 2008


One topic I often hear or read about is how to get non-reading adults to pick up a book and dive in. I know I've pondered this perplexing puzzle a time or two myself, and the subject scratched its way to the front of my noggin recently when I read a post by crime writer Dave White. Dave is the author of When One Mans Dies, which just happens to be the book I'm currently devouring. So, with the holidays approaching, and the possibility of stuffing a non-reader's stocking with a paperback gem, what can you do to spread the joy of a good book?

Obviously, giving books as a gift is a good option. I'm always trying to expand my friend's and family's libraries with books I've enjoyed. It gives you a new and interesting topic for discussion, instead of always discussing the latest episode of The Biggest Loser (which was totally lame, by the way!). Does it make them go out and read more titles by that author? Sometimes.

Realizing that used book stores are a treasure trove of cheap entertainment is another way. Personally, I'm one of those nerds who scours every copy of a new book at Barnes and Noble, looking for the best copy before laying down my cash. But over the years, I've realized that books are meant to be read, dog-eared, and loved. A beaten-up book is a sign of affection, a sign that the book has been there and back, and when a good mystery novel can be yours for a couple bucks, why, that's money well spent, my friend. If more people knew how easy (and economically savvy) it was to hit up a nearby used book store, would they become more frequent readers? I'd like to think so.

Editor's note: I totally still nitpick certain books. It's a force of habit, and I couldn't stop if I tried.

Of course, the easiest answer is also the cheapest, and if you know me, well, then maybe you predictably saw this one coming like a lazy change-up: get a friggin' library card! I swear, the library has changed my reading habits like nothing else this past year (this is where Brent, who has been telling me to get a card for years now, will roll his eyes). The library affords you the opportunity to read something you would otherwise opt not to, due to cost. I've read nearly two dozen graphic novels from the library in the past five months, all books I would not necessarily buy, but gladly read because I was given the chance. I just finished reading ten - count 'em, ten - Fables trades in a row, all because they were easily accessible at the library. And the library isn't all dusty tomes and Dewey Decimal Systems. It's an online resource, where you can request books from other libraries and renew books over the Inter-web. So tell those non-readers out there to go grab a library book. It doesn't cost them a dime!

Of course, over the past ten years or so, there's been a resurgence in young readers, thanks in large part to that magical wizard, Harry Potter. That kicks ass. In an MTV, hyperfast world where cartoons cause seizures and video games offer prostitution and cop capping, getting kids to sit on their ass and read is hard. Getting them to read a book that can cause serious foot damage if dropped (the thickest Potter tome, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, clocks in at 870 pages - and roughly five pounds) seems an impossible task. But now, kids are devouring books like the dreamy vampire story Twilight (or Dawson's Crypt, as I've heard it called), and young adult books are selling well. The elusive readers are young boys, of course. Publishers like Stone Arch Books are trying hard to lure in young male readers by offering dynamic action stories about sports, or heroes like Superman and Batman.

As for adult non-readers, the only thing close to the Potter buzz in the past decade was, of course, The Da Vinci Code, a poorly written knock-off of the non-fiction book Holy Blood, Holy Grail. Was Dan Brown our only hope to get Joe Q. Public to hit the book store looking for a good time? Man, I hope not.

Of course, there's always...I shudder to say this...Oprah. I know. I regret it already. But like it or not, she occasionally uses her powers for good, and even though many of her followers sometimes act like lemmings, she has gotten a large amount of people to buy books. So many readers, in fact, that there are whole sections in book stores devoted to her book club. Should there be? Hell no. If someone is only going to the book store to buy a book Oprah told them to, they should have to find it in amongst the many other classic (and most times superior) novels. Personally, I avoided her book club completely, until I heard she selected The Road by Cormac McCarthy. Still, I didn't pick up the book until after her sticker (does she really need a sticker!?) was no longer on the cover.

In the end, this is really a long-winded question with no answer. Would our culture be more enlightened, better versed, and more intellectually superior if we all picked up a book once in a while? I don't know. But if I can keep putting books in people's hands, with the hope that they'll wander the aisles of Barnes and Noble, Half-Priced Books, or their local library, then my work is done.

Now if you'll excuse me, I have to go to the book store.
Until next time,


Man, if I only had formal dance training. And voice training. And wasn't embarrassed to crack out the jazz hands.

Click HERE if you're confused.

Your Friendly Neighborhood,

Monday, December 1, 2008


Howdy! Hope all of you out there had a gloriously tryptophan-filled Turkey Day. Just a quick shot of news for now. So this photo is pretty small and crummy (it was snapped on my terribly out of date cell phone camera), but upon visiting my local Blockbuster not too long ago, I discovered a Hot New Release called 13 Hours in a Warehouse (the movie in the middle, if you're trying to figure it out).

Pretty surreal.

More soon,