Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Predictions for 2014

Every year, my friend, John Coleman makes end of the year predictions about the coming year. These are just too hilarious to keep to myself and with his permission, I've posted his predictions for 2014 below. Please read and enjoy (you won't be disappointed)!
Remember last fall we had the federal shutdown where the government was closed for several weeks? Well, in 2014 the US will borrow an idea from Weekends Only Furniture and just be open on Friday, Saturday, and Su...nday. President Obama will film some public service announcements where he pulls on a light switch and says: "It's Monday, we're closed!"

Providing healthcare to the uninsured finally becomes a reality in 2014. Actually, Obamacare gets scrapped altogether and the President just claims 40 million dependents on his policy.

Speaking of President Obama, she's going to have a very busy schedule next year. Did I say she? Yes, that's right, Michelle Obama will be president for most of 2014. It comes as the result of a huge Oval Office fight that ends with the phrase, "we'll if you know so much, maybe you can do it better!"

Illinois is going to have a governor's election next year. This state will make history when it elects the first computer to be our next governor. His name will be Corrupto 3000. He'll institute many changes that'll save Illinois millions of dollars; such as allowing online payments of bribes, faster speed of calculating the bills it won't pay, and an I Phone app that allows dead people to register to vote.

You know 2013 will be remembered as the year of the George Zimmerman trial. Well, looks like 2014 is going to be remembered as the year of the George Zimmerman trial.

The hottest selling item next Christmas will be Oprahvision.

In sports, the NHL has been struggling lately with low attendance and little attention given to the sport in the media. Well in 2014 they finally turn a corner when they stop playing hockey and start playing "ice football."

Speaking of football, after much debate with the player's union, the NFL picks a new training camp location. They agree to put it somewhere convenient for their players... next door to the Federal Penitentiary at Leavenworth, Kansas.

We're going to loose several famous people in 2014: Micky Rooney, John Glenn, Florence Henderson, Dan Rather, Nancy Reagan, and Regis Philbin. Oh they don't die, we just can't remember where we left them. Don't worry, they'll all turn up again in 2015.

Here's some TV predictions: Honey Boo Boo will get another member of the family when she gains a baby sister. Of course it will also be her daughter, her aunt, her second and third cousin, and her new BFF.

Speaking of redneck reality tv, the hit new show next fall will be about a Hillbilly family from Arkansas with a father named "Bubba," a super bitchy mom, and an ugly daughter. It seems America just can't get enough of the Clintons.

Monday, December 30, 2013

Calvin and Hobbes Grow Up

I loved reading the comic strip "Calvin and Hobbes" when I was a kid. Next to the end of  "Peanuts", the end of "Calvin and Hobbes" was the saddest day for me in my over thirty years of reading the funny papers. Two weeks ago, Stephan Pastis took a look at Calvin and Hobbes and what they would look like today. It's only a four strip series, but it's a great one (I particular like the decal sign in the last panel of the first strip). Enjoy!

Monday, December 16, 2013

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

One Frank is Not the Other


Following the Wrong Star

Thanks to "Inherit the Mirth".

Monday, December 16, 2013

One of the White Witch's Problems


Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Would You Like Some Wine With That Cheese?

A couple months ago I read the below article. I found it fascinating. I think it does a great job of articulating not only what the major problem with youth ministry is, but what the major problem facing Christianity in America is: a complete lack of authenticity.


Tuesday, December 03, 2013

C3 Stingray: Providing support and parts for all Corvette enthusiasts!

Supporting a Business: C3Stingray

A little over a month ago, I helped a couple of guys film a video for a Corvette business they want to start. I had acted in a couple of plays with one of the guys a few years before and he emailed me and asked if I would be able to help them with their video. So, I did. The video we made is currently no longer available to see, but you can still support them. Below is the link to their crowdsourcing site on RocketHub.


You can also visit their Facebook page at:


These are two great guys and I know they'll appreciate any help they can get at all. So, help them out!
I just found out that you can view the original video through YouTube at this link:


Sunday, December 01, 2013

2014 Graphic Novels Challenge

For the past several years, I participated in an online reading challenge. I signed up for it this year (2013), but due to a variety of reasons, I haven't read near as much this year as in year's past. Therefore, I don't think I'm going to end up meeting the challenge. That's ok and I've decided to give it another try and have signed up for the 2014 challenge. I'm going to try for the Modern Age level (12 books in a year). They've stretched the rules a bit, so now comic-strip collections count as well and since I read several of those, it is doable. Anyway, if you're interested, you can find out more info by going here.

Wednesday, November 06, 2013

Blockbuster Closes for Good

Just read this article a few minutes ago.


Blockbuster Video is no more. Perhaps if they hadn't started charging $5 for a movie per night and hadn't put so many smaller mom and pop businesses out of business, there would still be some sort of Blockbuster still around. Thank goodness for Family Video.

Friday, November 01, 2013

Is Anyone Actually Here?

From the book Man V. Liver by Neil Hinson & Paul Friedrich.

The Price of Happiness

From the book Man V. Liver by Neil Hinson & Paul Friedrich.

Thursday, October 31, 2013

A Google Doodle Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween!

Friday, October 25, 2013

Remember the Video Store?

We still have some video stores around (thank you FAMILY VIDEO!), but many places do not. Remember what it was like when there were just VHS tapes and no DVDs or Bluray? I do. If you do, perhaps this video will bring back some memories and if you don't, watch it for it's education in cultural history.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

The Original STAR WARS Trailer

Every wonder what STAR WARS was like before it became STAR WARS? Well, here's the original trailer for the movie.

What Do the Cards Have?

This is for all the St. Louis Cardinals fans out there.

What Do the Cards Have?

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Short Animated Video Tribute to Superman

So, Superman turned 75 this year and just a couple weeks before MAN OF STEEL opened in cinemas all around the globe, Zach Snyder (director of MAN OF STEEL) showed this short video that shows Superman through the years and his different transitions. As a lifelong fan of Superman, I have to admit it's a pretty darn good video.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

The DeMoulin Museum in the News

Here's an interesting short video about the DeMoulin Museum, an archive of some really interesting, intriguing, and imaginative stuff that was all made right here in the USA.

Friday, September 06, 2013

Obama, Putin, and Syria

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Help Renovate the Alfresco

A few months ago, I started volunteering at the Alfresco Art Center in Granite City, IL. It's an art complex with a great little theatre in a building that used to be home to a Baptist Church. I've become friends with the owner and CEO, Brenda Whitaker. She's been a lifelong patron of the arts and has invested much of her savings into helping renovate the Alfresco. There are just a few more things that need to be done and you can help out by donating to a Crowdtilt campaign that I set up for her. You can read more about it here: http://tilt.tc/W3Fmhttps://www.crowdtilt.com/campaigns/phase-ii-renovation-of-alfresco-art-center  .

Friday, June 07, 2013

Dr. Doom and Charlie Brown

"Diagnosis: Doom" by JD Hancock

Dr. McCoy Meets Charlie Brown

"I'm a Doctor, Not a Psychiatrist"  JD Hancock

Friday, May 10, 2013

The Oatmeal and Jim Henson

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Taxing the Internet

I just found out today while skimming some articles, that the U.S. Senate has agreed to go forward on the "Marketplace Fairness Act of 2013". This is a bill that, if passed, would force retailers to collect local and state sales tax on all purchases made over the Internet. Don't buy into the notion that this has anything to do with fairness, because it doesn't. Those small "mom & pop" stores who can't compete against the likes of Amazon or Wal-Mart have long since ceased to exist. No, this is all about money and big corporations like Amazon and Wal-Mart trying to further squeeze the smaller businesses this Internet taxation is supposed to help. Local businesses that are still around have thrived in part because of the Internet. State governments are chawing at the bit for this because they don't know how to cut spending and balance their budgets and anything they can do to get more money in their pockets, they will. If you read the articles about this, they'll talk about a theoritical $23 billion that states are losing because of the loss of sales tax because of the Internet. Notice the key word there: "theoretical." If people end up having to pay more to buy products off the Internet, they aren't going to shop there as much. People, unlike our federal and many of our state governments, have to cut spending when the price of goods goes up. There isn't going to be any major boon to state governments because of this. Don't buy into the lies, the truth is out there.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

The New MAN OF STEEL Trailer and a Few Thoughts About Superman

Superman has always been my favorite Superhero. I was never much into comics growing up, but when I did read comics, I drifted more towards DC instead of Marvel. When I was younger, DC was a much cleaner universe than it is now. Good guys occasionally did bad things and bad guys occasionally did good things, but you always knew who were the good guys and who were the bad guys. To me, Superman represented everything that was supposed to be good about the world at large. My friends hated that. The ones that were really into comics hated the DC world and were all about Marvel (Wolverine, The Punisher, etc.). The few who did like DC prefered Batman over Superman. Despite the ridicule I received ("Superman just isn't cool, Tom!"), he was my favorite.

Movie-wise, other than the first Star Wars film that I caught in a re-release, SUPERMAN with Christopher Reeves was one of the first movies I remember seeing in a movie theatre. The effects look a little dated now, but I still enjoy watching that original Superman movie.

Since that time, I've learned a lot about the world. There's other characters in the DC world that I really like (Hal Jordan's Green Lantern, for instance) and I can appreciate certain aspects of the Marvel world. However, Superman is still my guy. In terms of pop culture, the Marvel universe is cooler than the DC one and in the DC world, Batman is still more popular than Superman. But go back and watch that trailer again. I know it's marketing and it's just a three minute clip, but just watching that trailer fills me with hope. That's kind of what Superman is all about. He represents the best in humanity that we all hope and long for. Now, I just hope the movie is really as good as the trailers.

Rocky Horror Muppet Show

"Bizarro" Sunday, April 14, 2013

Monday, April 08, 2013

R.I.P. Annette Funicello

I'm thankful that my parents introduced us to the wonderful work of Annette Funicello. She was the first teen pop sensation. Rest in peace, Annette.

"SMS (Shine)" - by David Crowder

Send me a sign
A hint, a whisper
Throw me a line
'Cause I am listening
Come break the quiet
Breathe your awakening
Bring me to life
'Cause I am fading

(surround me)
The rush of angels' wings

Shine your light so I can see you
Pull me up I need to be near you
Hold me I need to feel love
Can you overcome this heart that's overcome

You sent a sign
A hint, a whisper
Human divine
Heaven is listening
Death laid love quiet
Yet in the night a stirring

(all around )
The rush of angels

Shine your light so I can see you
Pull me up I need to be near you
Hold me I need to feel love
Can you overcome this heart that's overcome

Oh the wonder of
The greatest love
Come for us
Oh the wonder of
The greatest love
Has come

Shine your light so all can see it
Lift it up cause the whole world needs it
Love's come down what joy to hear it
He has overcome
He has overcome

Friday, April 05, 2013

"Mother Goose & Grimm" Thursday, April 4, 2013 by Mike Peters

So sad, but so true.

Quasimodo and the Salvation Army

Just think what Quasimodo could do for the Salvation Army?
"The Argyle Sweater" Thursday, April 4, 2013 by Scott Hillburn

Thursday, April 04, 2013


This new graphic novel series from publisher Papercutz turns back the clock and modernizes Nancy Drew and her friends by setting them in a modern setting as elementary school students. In this story, Nancy and the Clue Crew (her friends Bess Marvin & George Fayne) want to build a grand science project for the science fair. However, before their project can even be finished, all of the other projects at the school disappear and it’s left to Nancy and the Clue Crew to figure out who did it.  The illustrations are drawn in a style similar to comics such as “Archie.” Graphic novels like this are usually aimed at younger boys. NANCY DREW AND THE CLUE CREW #1: SMALL VOLCANOES is aimed at young girls. The story isn’t as interesting as the original Nancy Drew books, but it might inspire really young female readers to seek out the original series.

Book Review, Graphic Novel: THE BOOK OF REVELATION

I have read the Book of Revelation more times than any other book in the Bible; I’ve read it over thirty times. Even though it is a book I am quite familiar, much of the text remains as enigmatic as the first time I read it; prophecy can be rather ambiguous. Therefore, when I had the opportunity to read this graphic novel adaptation of the Book of Revelation, I couldn’t pass it up.

This book, THE BOOK OF REVELATION is an adaptation by Matt Dorff of an original translation by the Greek Orthodox priests Father Mark Arey & Philemon Sevastiades. The illustrations are done by Chris Koelle. The text is taken directly from the translation done by Fathers Arey & Sevastiades. Unlike some Bibles, this is an actual translation of the original work and not a modern translation (e.g. The Message). Each chapter and verse of Revelation can be found in this book. In fact, the chapters in THE BOOK OF REVELATION are divided according to the actual chapters in the Bible. The verses aren’t numbered like the chapters, but they are there. As the illustrator, Chris Koelle, points out in his note at the end of the book, he made his images based upon the perspective of the Apostle John. The images that are seen are representations of what John might have seen as he was transposing the original text. There can be disagreement over the interpretation of certain passages of text, but the translator, adapter, and illustrator have remained faithful to the text.

Like much of the Bible, there is a great deal in THE BOOK OF REVELATION that is violent and explicit. Koelle doesn’t shy away from this in his illustrations. However, he does refrain from making them over-the-top or campy. Destruction is wrought, blood flows, and people die, but it’s shown as the Bible says. Younger children might be frightened by some of the images and rightly so. However, I don’t think that’s enough to prevent a young reader from reading this book. Caution should be used, but it should be according to the maturity of each child.

Revelation is one of the books from the Bible that have inspired artists for several centuries and some of the images and phrases from the book are a part of the common lexicon (e.g. Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, Armageddon, etc.). Even if you are not a Christian, one cannot deny that the book has had an impact and influence upon our culture. THE BOOK OF REVELATION provides a visual reference outside one’s mind’s eye that can illuminate Revelation for both believer and nonbeliever, child and adult alike.

Tuesday, April 02, 2013

Book Review, Graphic Novel: ERNEST & REBECCA #3: GRANDPA BUG

ERNEST & REBECCA #3: GRANDPA BUG is the third volume in the series of graphic novels aimed at children about a six-year-old girl named Rebecca and her best friend, a germ named Ernest. In this volume, Rebecca and her sister, Coralie, are sent to their grandparent’s house. Their mother believes the country air will do Rebecca’s health good. Rebecca’s grandpa is called Grandpa Bug (the origins of the name are revealed in the story) and he spends a great amount of time doing things with Rebecca. However, while at her grandparent’s house, Ernest disappears and Rebecca is saddened at his disappearance and attempts to find him. Along the way, Rebecca meets a trio of friends led by a kid named Chris. Also, Coralie attempts to figure out if her boyfriend, Freddy, is interested in her anymore.

Although there were parts of the story that I found trite, overall I enjoyed ERNEST & REBECCA #3: GRANDPA BUG. Other than Rebecca’s bright pink hair and Coralie’s vivid purple hair, the illustrations remind me of cartoons from the mid-1980s that I used to watch as a youngster on television (such as THE LITTLES). It’s a style that you don’t see very much in animation anymore, let alone in illustrated works. If all the books in the series are like this, they could easily be turned into an animated series. The book has a strong appeal for young girls, but also for any child whose parents are in the midst of a divorce.

Friday, January 25, 2013


In this story, the Power Rangers Super Samurai are faced with a foe that initially seems quite easy to conquer: a bunch of toys. The Rangers soon discover things aren’t as they seem as the toys are actually nighlok in miniature form. The Ranger learn a lesson in mathematics as the toys exponentially multiply the closer they get to the source. The illustrations are colorful and rather simplistic. However, the panels aren’t always ordered sequentially, so they story can be difficult to follow at times. Also, unless you are a fan of the series, you probably won’t like the story with its mix of Asian spiritual themes and anime-inspired violence. Overall, this book is strictly for those who are fans of Power Rangers Super Samurai.