Sunday, June 28, 2009

no, still nothing of real stubstance, i suck so much!

1. What do your friends think of you?
Quetzalcoatal Comes Through - The Mountain Goats [yay Mayan deities]

2. If someone says, “Is this okay?” You say?
The Day I Knew You Wouldn't Ever Come Back - The Decemberists [apparently it wasn't]

3. How would you describe yourself?
Resonant Bell World - The Mountain Goats [sometimes I am a starling, sometimes I am a kite]

4. What do you like in a guy/girl?
Good Friend - Violent Femmes [cool]

5. How do you feel today?
Greasy Kid Stuff - They Might Be Giants [hmm]

6. What is your life’s purpose?

7. What is your motto?
Lack of Knowledge - Violent Femmes [that is not nice]

8. What do you think about very often?
Green Typewriters III - The Olivia Tremor Control [lies. i have never once thought of them]

9. What do you think of your best friend?
get away from me - best fwends [THIS THING IS SO MEAN]

10. What do you think of the person you like?
Green Machine - The Apples in Stereo [i have no idea what this song means]

11. What is your life story?
I'm Your Villain - Franz Ferdinand [i am not]

12. What do you want to be when you grow up?
Sandy Face - The Aquabats [YEAH! tent of diapers! face covered in sand!]

13. What do you think of when you see the person you love?
32 Footsteps - They Might Be Giants [they're walkin away from meeee D:]

14. What will you dance to at your wedding?
Pictures of Pandas Painting - They Might Be Giants [WORST. WEDDING. EVER.]

15. What will they play at your funeral?
Adair - The Mountain Goats [this is kind of fantastically perfect]

16. What is your hobby/interest?
Saigon Shrunken Panorama - The Mountain Goats [okay]

17. What is your biggest fear?
Nova Scotia - The Mountain Goats [basically]

18. What is your biggest secret?
The Saga of You, Confused Destroyer of Planets - Lemon Demon [TRUTH]

19. What do you think of your friends?
Key of 2 - Violent Femmes [prison musicians!]

20. What will you post this as?
Living a Lie - Violent Femmes [no i will not]

Monday, June 15, 2009

oh dear

This is entirely terrible, I know I know I know. Written for some English class a long time ago.

Two Brothers, One Video Blog: A Whole New Kind of Society

Everyone knows what YouTube is; mention it to any teenager, and they’ll most likely give you a long list of videos you’ve gotta see. The popular video site is host to millions of videos, with tens of thousands more being uploaded every day. Though at first glance, the site may seem a repository of TV show clips and videos of drunk guys lighting firecrackers, YouTube fosters a sense of interaction and of community, giving anyone with internet access the ability not only to view the lives of others, but also to influence and participate in them. There is no better example of the utilization of YouTube to the ends of building a community than that of Nerdfighters, the group of people inspired, organized, and founded by brothers John and Hank Green.

In December of 2006, John proposed the idea of starting a video blog, or vlog, on YouTube as an alternate means of communicating. Because the two lived far from each other (at the time, John was living in New York and Hank in Montana), they relied mostly on textual forms of communication, and “because it was always done while they were doing other things,” their relationship was not strong, and they “never really connected.” They decided to stop all textual communication and to instead confer through daily video blogs for the whole of 2007, Hank uploading a video one day and John the next, Monday through Friday. They titled the project “Brotherhood 2.0”.

At first they talked back and forth mostly to themselves, but, as their viewership grew, the project evolved into an interactive society of John and Hank responding to their viewers’ comments and video responses. In mid-February, John named Brotherhood 2.0 followers Nerdfighters, a name he mistakenly took a video game’s title to be (it was actually called Aero Fighters).

Throughout the project, John and Hank initiated ideas or challenges that the whole community latched onto and fully participated in. This is one of the interesting, innovative sides of virtual communities. The instant adoration of and dedication to any suggestion put forth by the brothers reveal an interesting aspect of community: that people are much more apt to participate and fully engage in something when someone else takes initiative first. People like to be led and are happy to go along with someone they admire or respect. It has been frequently brought up in discussions that the Nerdfighter community is strikingly similar to a cult in many ways. Many Nerdfighters pledge their undying allegiance to the brothers and community and adopt a whole way of life according to what Hank and John deem important.

John and Hank have definitely realized and harnessed the power that they have acquired through their fans. They have set up a PayPal account to accept donations for charities; they have organized a “secret project for awesome” in which hundreds of viewers created videos promoting their favorite charities. When one viewer decided to quit college and fly to Bangladesh to use his saved up money to buy food and supplies for the people there, John and Hank spotlighted his efforts and donated money themselves, spurring the Nerdfighters to do the same. When the brothers see another Nerdfighter doing something awesome, they mention and support their efforts on their vlog, thus spurring other Nerdfighters to get involved in their projects. Hank and John have inspired dozens of similar channels which have also gained large viewerships, creating communities within communities.

It is wonderful that the brothers have used the opportunities they’ve acquired for good; they could have just as easily made the project all about themselves, for their own gain. Instead, they have created a community in which other people have been inspired to do something to make the world a better place. They’ve inspired to be more accepting of others, to be more generous, and to have pride in who they are.

The community the Green brothers have created has continued to grow. Nerdfighters are sincere, inspiring, dedicated, and driven viewers. Yet they are not merely viewers, but participants, members of an online family who support and help those in need, who band together to do awesome things, who share a common ideology that the world has the potential to be a great place and that it is up to them to make it that way.

Saturday, June 13, 2009


A long long time ago, some nerdfighters from the nerdfighter aim chat, or maybe the dftba chat, can't remember, wrote a story using, which lets you edit text and see others' edits in real time.

There were maybe five or six of us who collaborated on this. Good times.

There once was a Nerdfighter named Pablo. He was a solitary boy. On a particularly damp and lonely Easter Eve, he went to the JohnJacobJingleHymerShmit Grocery Store (JJJSGS, or Triple-J SGS) to buy some yellow peeps, which Pablo enjoyed cooking in the microwave.

BUT! These were no normal peeps. These peeps were really ALIENS!!!
Alien Ostrich Peeps!(AOP)
He bought two packages of the INFERNAL sugar blobs and took them home.
When Pablo microwaved the peeps, they bloated to an unfathomable size, their enormous, accusing, slightly melted eyes staring at him as if to say "WHY!? Why have you betrayed us?"
Pablo loved roasted peeps though, and desperately wanted a snack. Pablo stared at the peeps in the microwave as they continued to swell. They let out a strange growling noise. He began to struggle with his conflicting emotions. Should he give in to his desires for peeps, or give them a chance at life?
Just as they reached maximal size, he hit POWER OFF. He wondered if it was too late to save them.
As he opened the microwave door, a nasty, burnt odor wafted out, permeating the entire house, the smell saturating his jeans and "DFTBA" hoodie.
He turned away, searching the space around him for uncontaminated air to breathe. After waiting a few seconds, he turned back to find an empty microwave.
He examined the inside of the microwave more closely and found nothing but a few spots of sticky marshmallow and a green Post-It. The peeps were gone.
"AARGHH! This is tragedies!" Pablo exclaimed in the manner of a man-zombie who had a hunger, and the only thing that could cure that hunger was more Peeps (and not the alien kind). "I'M HUUUNGRY!"
He picked up the Post-It and read the mysterious note they had left. It said..."we can haz cheezburger? -peeps"
Pablo stood there in disbelief. He thought disbelievingly, "I don't believe this." He made a face. And on that face was a look of disbelief. He had a face, once. The fumes from cooking the peeps had melted it away. Pablo the Faceless Man was still hungry, regardless of whether he had lips or not.
He decided to search for the peeps. He looked high, he looked low, he looked to, he looked fro, but couldn't find even a molecule of marshmallow. "IT JUST ISN'T FAIR!" Pablo burst into tears and slumped down in the corner of the kitchen, utterly distraught.

He glanced up in the mirror. The sight of his face made him cry even harder. But then he noticed a tiny bit of yellow in his hood.

"Golly gee willikers!" he mumbled with his lipless mouth, shrinking in fright. He then grabbed his nearest weapon- a DEADLY spatula- and flipped the little bugger off his precious hood with a manly flick of the wrist.
"GTFO!!!" he yelped with his vocal chords. Thinking quickly, he thrust his hand upon a conveniently placed bottle of Strawberry Hill and commenced to pour it upon the heathen Peep. It let out a moan of peepy pain, then shrunk to its original not-so-intimidating size.
"Eureka!" Pablo shouted with joy. "I have found the cure!"
His elation was broken by the memory of the 4 other peeps that he had not found. They were definitely not in the house, so where could they be? "If I were a giant yellow alien peep on the night before Easter, where would I go?" he wondered. He thought back to the note. He remembered how wonderfully green it was and sighed with contentment.
Pablo locked himself in his room, shamed at his horrid facelessness. The Peeps had not returned, leaving Pablo alone, stricken by guilt. He had not known the Peeps were alive, and wished he had never gone to the Triple-J SGS on that fateful day.
Pablo had no mouth to eat with. He found himself desperately craving Cheez-its and and egg McMuffins. Three days passed. Then a knock came at Pablo's door.
"Yes...?" Pablo mumbled. "Who is it?"
"I am PeepMaster, Lord of the Ostrich Peeps, from planet AOP. You have comitted an atrocity by murdering my subjects. You must pay."
"But...but...I have no face...isn't that punishment enough???"
"NO!!" the Peepmaster boomed. "You must do us a favor. And this favor might be your downfall.." (duuu DUUUUUUUNNNNNNN)
"Wha?" Pablo stammered "Buh, huh?"
"We have been watching your 'vlogbrothers' via verizon broadband wireless for many months now. You must shave off John Green's left eyebrow!!!" the peep laughed manically.
"NOOOOO NEVERRRR!!" Pablo least as much as he could with no mouth.
"That is not all." the Peep smirked,"You must buy ten catfish, let them rot for a bit, and then stuff them in Hank's guitar!"
"NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!" Pablo cried. "Why would you do this, you decepticon!"
"NEED I REMIND YOU...Hank is responsible for the murder of many of my brethren. And John covered his face in Peanut Butter, which is STRONGLY against Peep law!!"
Pablo cried. He did not want to shave off John's eyebrow, or stuff rotted catfish in Hank's guitar.
"I refuse." Pablo said bluntly.
"If you do as we will get your face back. If not, you will be chained to a gorilla named Poindexter Snuffalufagus for all eternity. In a room where you can smell Cheez-its and egg Mcmuffins, but never can eat them! The will be just out of reach...right where 3 billion peeps will be watching you FOREVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!111!!!!!!!!!!!!! *Mandark laugh*<---(Dexter's Laboratory refrence)"
Pablo stood up. "Okay, I'll do it."
Suddenly, in a brilliant flash of light, Pablo found himself standing on a spaceship..or that is what it looked like at least.
"This is Peep Space 9." A small peep shaped like a rabbit said, "Welcome aboard."
"And I am Jean Peep Picmarshmallow, Captain of this vessel," a bald peep said.
Pablo was confused, partly because he had no idea how a peep could be bald, as peeps have no hair--but mostly because Picard, who he assumed this Peep was named after, was not captain of Deep Space 9, which was actually a space station, not a space ship, anyway. He decided to ignore these facts because the situation was confusing enough. Just going with the flow was probably the best idea for now, seeing as he had just been kidnapped by Peeps. Which, according to all previous knowledge, was a very un-peeplike thing to do.
A hole opened up in the floor and a platform raised up with Hank Green.
"What are you doing here Hank?!?"
Hank didn't answer. He just started playing the party blower solo in real time. Do, do do do, do do do, do do do , do do do, do do do, do do do do do.
do, do do, do do do do do, do do do do do do do, do do do.
Pablo rolled over, and hit his iPhone alarm. "Ughh....." He looked over at 2 and half empty bottles of strawberry hill wine, and 5 empty packages of peeps. He then jumped out of bed and proceeded to call Ralph Culver, his best friend and handy-dandy dream expert, on the big white phone.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

this is water

This was my final project for graphic design. We had to make something with 16 pages or elements, chronicling an epiphany we've had. Originally, I was going to make it about when I first started to appreciate the English Stuff elements of literature, and the text was going to be bits of Catcher in the Rye, Paper Towns, Song of Myself, and the Mountain Goats' Tallahassee, but a few weeks before it was due, John read the speech that David Foster Wallace gave at a Kenyon commencement ceremony. And it kinda totally changed the way I look at and think of the world. Completely. Andbutso I switched to that speech and John's comments on it instead.

It means a lot to me, and I wouldn't share it with my physically present type friends, because they may/might not understand. But I trust you. I trust you, internet, because this kind of stuff is entirely what our relationship is based on. Words and thinking and connecting.

So here:

[click to be able to actually read things]