Wednesday, June 29, 2005

i'm an '80's icon

Who's Your 80s Movie Icon Alter-Ego? Find out @ She's Crafty

cold war kids

nathan boat

6/26/05 (Tour Entry #1)
Lamas and vineyards...our first show in San Luis Obisbo. The Dwelling, where we were supposed to play, got shut down and raided by disgruntled employees. As we stand out front wondering if we still get gas the owner banters with officer Holmes, Ms. Holmes...we run into two kids telling us how every venue is being shut down in the city...fortunately for us...there's a mansion out in the hills surrounded with vineyards and lamas...a show of the ages is "going down tonight"...we're on the bill....right after the two metal bands.

so the cold war kids are on tour, and they are keeping a diary w/pics. pretty funny stuff already happening to them just a couple of days into it.{i corrected the date in the above post, but those guys don't seem to know what month it is, so the dates in the diary are wrong. if it says may, it means june} they are headed all the way up to seattle and back, so if you are on the west coast and want to check them out, hit up their show list and drop in on them.

Monday, June 27, 2005

so come on

rodney graham

Rodney Graham
Still from Rheinmetall
35mm film

working is fun. i haven't had a job since about december, and it's nice to 'go to work'. i have the day off tomorrow (tuesday) because my boss is in meetings all day. we're really busy working on getting our fall line ready to get on the shelves in a couple weeks. add on top of that that we're almost finished with the spring '06 line, and it's a really crazy place to be this week. i like the industry so far. fashion is really fun stuff, and i enjoy being around the people at the office because they are really excited about making nice clothes that are cool and interesting. not all of it is stuff that i would wear personally, but there's tons of thought and quality put into it. oh yeah, we're having a sample sale over at ever in a couple of weeks, so i'll let you guys know more about that when i do. nothing like getting an eighty dollar t shirt for $1.

been thinking a lot about my next body of work in the artistic sense. got some fun ideas. growth, life, seasons, something to cause interaction with the viewer. ask me about it because i will be happy to tell you about it. i just dont want to blow out the concept just yet by putting up on here. mystery and suspense are such key elements! i feel like my current show was pretty generous, but i want to amplify that by like a million. i wont to provide so much 'stuff' in my work that it's more than you can catch on a single viewing, or as a single viewer. i think that's what seperates student level work, and amazing level work. here's an example: in the lord of the rings movies, all of the arrows were individually painted and adorned with markings for the people who were shooting them {men, elves, orcs etc.}. it's like a character in a film or book having an amazing back story that's hinted at, and can't completely be defined. i know that sounds a bit ambitious, but i think it's something that i want to reach for. being really really detailed in sculpting/installation work always helps to push things to the next level.

so anyway, that's what i have been thinking about tonight - other than getting drunk tomorrow morning for fun, and how i wake up each morning having dreamt about an antique store...

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

if you try sometimes

if you try sometimes, you just might find
you get what you need.

i guess i need to try a little harder

being here at home has left me bored, broke, and ready to work. no word on the job situation as of yet. from what mausty says, i have the position, but i haven't worked a lick yet. he said that his boss has been a little out of it lately, and that he's pretty overworked. i call, i leave messages, but nothing yet.

being here at home has opened up many opportunities for me to get things done during the day. usually however the amount of tasks completed is in direct contrast to the number of cigarettes smoked, with the latter category usually beating out the former. i must admit however that this is perfect time for me to quit because i frankly can't stand smoking when it is so damned hot outside. i just can't handle it. i need me some fog to make it worthwhile. i sure will miss though i am sure.

there are things that i can capitalize on while i am here such as: painting part of my neighbor's house for some extra cash, doing the sprawling mountain of dishes in the kitchen, cleaning the house, and starting to pack for the move. these things are not on my list of things that i completed today, who's illustrious members include: several four legged friends from the desert, dropping off some junk for amanda at biola, hanging out looking at my own art show, listening to 'let it bleed' three or four times, making grilled cheese, and drinking iced coffee. {let me add at this juncture that listening to the stones on my new wooden ipod with my '70's headphones makes it so future-past that i can only imagine it would be something that stones would have had, you know if we actually had received jet packs, robots and flying cars in the year 2000}

i guess i need to try a little harder

so yeah, lots of things that i need to take care of, but i think the most pressing thing is the discipline of self. if i ever want to be a successful artist, i need to cultivate a good work ethic, and actually get out of my house a bit to get some ideas rolling around in my head. if i ever want to finish school, teach, build a house or leave southern california, im actually going to have to take some initiative.

you can't always get what you want
but if you try sometimes
you just might find
the you get what you need.

exciting times to come


last night i was at the bayou for a couple of hours with mb, andy, gloyd and sycz. tonight will be the last night when the bayou will really be the bayou. gloyd heads north pretty soon, sycz is heading to LA to live with dmh and trev, and MB is heading north to pasadena to be the custodian of what will be the former hamilton residence. my amanda and i will be moving to matt and lisa's place, completing the plethora of moves in progress. this is a time of boxes and booze, dust and tears. happy and sad, there's lots of movement going on. im really glad that i have been able to spend as much time with the gang as i have before we all move a little bit further away.

i don't really have any doubt about our staying in touch. no one is going to be so far away to preclude communication. we've got the porch still, in idea, if not in reality. i think it's going to be a really good thing for everyone to be separated a little bit. amanda and i will be the last ones left here in whittier, aside from maust, though we all know he doesn't really count because he's never really anywhere. i think that this phase is a good warm up for me.

you men (and a couple ladies) have really been my family, my hearth and home now for almost three years. no matter if it was the manor, the bayou, or anyones place, it was my home because you were there and always welcomed me. it has meant the world to me having you in my life. I am glad that distance doesn't have anything to do with it.

i admit it will be strange not to be able to cruise over to the bayou at 11pm and know that i will be in the company of friends, and more importantly beer. i imagine though that i will be able to accomplish more with my time. maybe even finish my degree! of course that's not your fault, it's mine, and i will take care of it, i promise.

anyway, hopefully there will be something going on at the bayou tonight. i want to be there. i want to hear the screen door creak one last time, smell the cat shit in the living room, drink the terrible water, watch sycz burn a bratwurst, and watch the planes track their holding pattern in the night sky over our heads while i still can. here's to you bayou, you're a classy lady.

Monday, June 20, 2005

monday morning boy


another week begins, lovely this time with a half pint of blackthorn and a couple of relaxed porch sits. im listening to steven malkmus' 'face the truth' on vinyl. good stuff. it's mb's copy, which i should return to him today because i don't think he has even listened to it yet. mb if you see this this morning, give me a ring if you aren't at work.

haven't started the new job yet. mausty says his boss is kinda out of it lately. i'm not worried at all about having the position, that seems pretty secure, but i'd really like to start making some money. amanda and i are moving at the end of july so we need to make sure to have our deposite for the new place ready. it always takes so long to get the last one back. drew and his wife amanda are moving to idaho, so mb and his wife lisa are taking their house up in pasadena. we're moving to matt and lisa's place a couple of blocks away to complete the incestuous housing trifecta. it's a really nice place, hardwood floors, garage, garden etc, and it's cheaper. so it's a win for all of us. but hopefully i will start the new job sometime this week just to make sure that things are kosher moneywise for our move and everything.

not much else going on. amanda wants to start modeling, so we're working on putting together a portfolio for her so she can get an agency and everything. she's not tall enough to do runway stuff, but she would be an amazing print model for adds and photo shoots and stuff. she would really enjoy it and she thinks it would be great for meeting contacts to later become a photographer. we've already gots tons and tons of pics of her courtesy of maust to fill a small country anyway, so that's a start.

Friday, June 17, 2005

i love you

no really my dear readers, i do. if nothing in my behavior so far has proven this to you, i offer this as an example, albeit a small one. scratch that, it's actually a venti.

after dropping amanda off at the train station this morning, i stopped by my local coffee kabal to have a cup of breakfast and a stick of awake. the sticks i had, but the cup of breakfast i needed. so i sit down to enjoy my breakfast with a side of death, when lo and behold our favorite comic is there on the side of the cup. i've been wanting to share this with you all morning, but here's where i prove my love for you. readers, i threw the cup away. not just into the garbage, but a very specific sack of trash filled with last nights plate scrapings and a couple days worth of cat box. i retrieved the cup just now, solely so i could relay to you the quote that brightened my morning.

The Way I See It # 23

Chances are you are scared of fictions.
Chances are you are only fleetingly happy.
Chances are you know much less than you think you do.
Chances are you feel a little guilty.
Chances are you want people to lie to you.
Perhaps the answers lie on the side of a coffee cup.
You are lost.

David Cross

Monday, June 13, 2005

eli, the barrow boy

growing up in a small town often involves trying to come up with ways of entertaining yourself and others. my friends and i had quite a few adventures along the way, some serious and others with just the potential for jail time, though none ever materialized. in hindsight, the lack of jail time probably had to do with the chief of police being one of my track and field coaches, and the fact the he was often a dinner guest of my grandparents. Chief Grover was a good guy to have as a friend.

one afternoon my friend eli from the swim team and i were bored and were trying to find something to do. without much money for gas, we figured we would stay around town, which was convenient because we were already there, and didn't need his parents permission to go there. first problem solved. the second problem of what to do, which seemed the more pressing at the time, was soon easily solved as well. we would build a cannon.

eli's dad was many things at different times. as far as i know he is currently an insurance salesman, one of the few successful gentlemen of this occupation in our small town. however at this point i believe he was still somewhat involved with his former occupation as a snap-on tool salesman. this former financial dalliance of freds proved a major boon to our mission that day. we had at our disposal a basement full to over-flowing and an two story garage full of tools and materials with which to build our ticket to coolsville.

guns are passe in a town where you can check in your hunting rifle to the main office at the high school. seeing a 17 year old high schooler walking down the hall in cammoflage carrying a thrity ought six is no less ordinary than sitting in the parking lot of the knechts auto parts store on friday night trying to pick up on volleyball players and cheerleaders. we had to find a way to make shooting machines more interesting. eli's house was a good place to start. with our abundant resources, and incredible drive to blow something up, we set upon our task.

instead of lead, we would shoot gourds.

friends had potato guns. simple little tubes, rigged with removable end caps whose barrel you would stuff full of a potato which we travel about 200 feet with a good wind when the hair spray in the ignition chamber was lit at just the right moment. we figured we could build one of these in about half an hour, and therefore wouldn't be good enough to help us pass the time. pumkins. "pumkins were the new black" we said to ourselves, without actually using such a 2001 phrase in the halcyon days of the mid to late nineties.

we managed to cut a 12in diameter pvc culvert pipe into a length that we figured would work. we were stupid then, and too focused on making the thing fast enough to shoot it during the daylight to do the math though. regular potato guns were usually about four, and at their greatest glory five feet, in length. we figured the 6 feet would be plenty for the thing to launch pumkins, so that's how much pipe we cut with the hacksaw. i don't know how much you know about guns, but the length of the barrel makes a huge difference in how far, and how true, a bullet can travel. if our cannon were a gun, it would be a derringer firing .50 caliber shells. good for a real short distance where your margin of error doesn't matter because your target is so close.

anyway we started building the thing and we actually did a couple of things in a bigger and better way. somehow we employed a thought process to the ignition when we couldn't manage it for barrel length. people usually propelled their spud guns with aqua net hair spray and some sort of open flame put through a small hole in the chamber. this would not provide enough lift or spark for us though. we found a couple of old, really sweet electrical bbq starters in the basement, and went to work wiring them up to our cannon. we build a handle, and put the double ignition buttons where a guns trigger would be. as far as beauty, a mossberg double-barreled shotgun, this was not. but the thought behind it was great. more spark, more better burning. now we just needed a fuel source.

propane sounded dangerous, plus there's no hiding a big white canister when you are trying to be covert. answering "hey boys what are you up to with that propane" with, " oh just trying to find the gigantic commercial outdoor stove you have, mom!" doesn't really cut it. so we had to pick something else. our pile of pumkins taunted us as the moments ticked by, and we just had to blow them out of our cannon LIKE FIVE MINUTES AGO AHAHAHAHAHHAHGGGGGG

searching through the garage, we cast aside regular old gasoline, some kerosene, and a bunch of other highly-flammable solvents and junk. we eventually found ourselves in front of a large blue barrel in the back corner under a tarpaulin labeled 'ether'. this was an exciting a previously unknown sensation, much like a first near-miss car accident, or seeing that cute girl in the hall during lunch hour.

the liquid wouldn't do though as it would just not really affect that quick ignition we wanted. we took some and poured it into a regular run of the mill spray bottle though, and we had ourselves some ether in as close to a gaseous state we could get. perfect!

by this time it was getting dark. it was sometime in september or october, and though indian summer was still keeping us in t-shirts - goose fleshed fairly often, it had gotten dark pretty quickly. this darkness was crucial to concealing our location should our pumpkin do some collateral damage on its earth bound dance with gravity. due to our travel limitations, and the fact that this sucker was a electrical, meant that we pretty much had to stay in the back yard. fortunately, eli's parents spread was pretty comfortable. it occupied about half of the block it sat on, sharing the remainder with the Wood Products Credit Union of which i am a member.

we took the cannon out behind the garage, in the relative concealment of some low trees and shrubs. loading the first round was without incident, and we managed to spray a bunch of the ether into the back without getting light headed before we screwed the end cap on. time to fire. we propped the leading edge of the cannon up on the top of the fence and fired. the motion on the eclectic triggers was wonderful, the little click*click*click of the starter like an overture. then a low sound more felt, like being kicked in the stomach, and a WHOOOOSH *POP* of the pumpkin leaving the barrel. we pretty sure we got some good distance because we didn't hear anything after that. our best guess was that it landed on the other side of Hwy 99, in the train yard about 300y away. not to shabby!

firing had been pretty easy, though eli had fallen over onto the ground from the recoil, but at least hadn't been hit in the face by the butt end of the barrel or anything. we decided to reload, and this dear friends, was nearly the death of us.

we stuffed another pumpkin into the barrel with a broomstick who's end was wrapped with a rag and some duct tape. a very civil war sort of implement, ya know if it weren't made of plastic. after loading the gun again, we decided we needed a snack. we set the gun against the back of the garage and went inside. we hadn't gone more then four feet when we heard the sound of plastic sliding down wood siding, and then the low stomach kick & pop of the ignition of the gun. the handle with the ignition switches has been caught on a water faucet when the gun settled down the back of the garage and there must have been enough liquid residue of the ether to make it ignite. we stood and stared as the pumpkin leapt up over the roof, and started to reach the point where it would pull a U turn. because of lack of a proper amount of ether, this didn't take very long. about 50 feet up, the pumpkin spinning rotations slower and slower, gravity took over. it was time for eli and i to make it to the porch. running as fast as we could, we made it to the porch just in time to watch the pumpkin disappear behind a row of trees on the side of his parents property.

all hell breaking lose sounds a lot like the shattering sky-light of a credit union.

it was now time to hide the gun. running down the stairs to the basement with a cannon was awkward, but we got it down the steep steps, and slid it into a ratty crawlspace behind a workbench. we stacked a couple boxes and threw some junk on it, and it looked great. about this time we could hear the sirens. they were almost beautiful, muffled by the ground and stacks of boxes in the basement. we made our way upstairs and started watching a movie as all the cops in cottage grove, about four cars, roared into the parking lot of the bank. we kept our cool. agreements were made, oaths sworn and lips sealed. they would never catch us. and they never actually did.

we had a hard-won private enjoyment the following wednesday when our weekly town newspaper came out. the lead story covered a three hour standoff, with guns drawn and a hostage negotiator, between the cottage grove police department and a smashed pumpkin lying on the floor behind the counter of the Wood Products Credit Union. no officers or hostages were wounded. damages to the bank we reported to included 1 glass skylight (broken) and the cost of renting an industrial carpet cleaner to remove the remains of the illicit gourd.

pitchers of liquor and milk

so thanks to thos of you who came out saturday night to check out the opening. your comments and compliments, and even your mere presence were more than i could have asked for. truly a heartfelt experience for me. thanks for spending the time to take in the work, and thanks for really trying to unpack it. it means a lot to me.

the earth quake this morning also means a lot to me. a whoe days worth of work in fact. i went to pick up some stuff from the gallery today and found half of the work collapsed into a heap. things have been crushed, cables ripped from the ceiling, etc. i figure i can have everything repaired and re-hung if i can put in a decent day tomorrow. it should be suprising that this happened i guess. craftsmanship wasn't the issue, just an act of god brought this thing down. the way that i designed it and hung it allowed me to move the entire thing (once hung) about six inches with a mere touch of the finger. i can only imagine how far that thing must have been swinging once the earth started a rockin. we're talking something that size of a large room in your house swinging three or four feet side to side really fast and then falling four and a half feet straigh down. oh well, nothing i can do about it at this point. i;ll take some cool pictures of it hanging all retared and scragly, then i'll rehang it and hope for the best. if you haven't come to see it yet, drop by on tuesday, or any day now through july 4 and give it a peek.

i was going to write a story tonight on here, but it's pretty late and i am pretty tired. so i should probably just post the story another time. maybe i will take a short walk outside and see what happends...

Friday, June 10, 2005

what we talk about when we talk about awesome

on a micro level at least

a couple of things: first my show tomorrow, saturday 11 june 8p in the main gallery at biola university. it's going to be pretty good (though you can judge for yourself). please drop by!

number two: i am pretty sure that i have a new job! i had an interview yesterday at Ever, the same clothing company that maust works for. pretty high end stuff, selling in all the super high end places around the world. we're talking $100+ t-shirts and stuff. the head of the company needs and assitant and maust told him that i would be a perfect fit. this position has the potential to turn into a design position as far as designing actual clothing and stuff. really exciting opportunity. i should find out for sure this weekend sometime, but maust said that he was 100% sure that i have the job.

number three: i know my opening is tomorrow night, but there are also a couple of other really cool things going on that you ought to check out if you get the chance. jen patterson's birthday party is tomorrow night as well as another art opening in long beach by amanda hamilton. i don't know the details about amanda's show, but i am sure that drew could fill you in about them. jen's party is at their house, and i sure that you would make it in plenty of time to boggie down if you left from my show and headed straight there.

hope to see you all tomorrow!

Wednesday, June 08, 2005


just a few things to update really quick. my art show opens this saturday at 8pm. main gallery at biola. the show will be up through july 4th, so if you can't make it to the opening, you can check it out through the next three weeks or so. please come by and check it out saturday because i would really love to see you all there. also, happy birthday to philistino boxspring hog, and to me tomorrow.