Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas, everybody

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Google Maps has just introduced Street View in the Twin Cities. Here's my apartment building:

View Larger Map

You can totally see my car on the south end of the street.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

One of the projects I've been working on of late has been a short documentary about the Patchwork Quilt Digital Divide Initiative. Much of it has been shot indoors without the use of a lighting kit - I've been experimenting with different ways of sweetening the images. I've also been working on the lower third graphic that will be used throughout the video.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007


Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Here's a little something I threw together while I was messing with some of the Bike Jerks footage. Thanks to Roxanne for being my associate producer and to Jeff for organizing this whole thing. We're going to be shooting some more this weekend - I'll keep you posted.

Update - Click here to watch the high res version

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

I'm shooting a short video for Bike Jerks (with Choice's help). I'll post it up here when it's finished - hopefully by the end of the month.

"Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns."
-George Eliot

George Eliot was a female writer in Victorian England who used a male pen name to be taken seriously. Which is to say - she lived a lie and her writing is not to be trusted. However, in the spirit of optimism I'm attempting to adopt towards the change in seasons, I'm willing to give her the benefit of the doubt. Here's to you, autumn.

~ all taken on my block in minneapolis ~

These past couple of weeks, I've been helping out John Forde of Mental Engineering with the new set he has been building. He's designed a portable set that folds out of a box the size of a refrigerator, complete with its own lighting grid. I've been working on the portable control room element - the four camera switcher setup that records the show and reminds me of the Bad News Bears. This ragtag collection of equipment includes broken e-bay cameras and cables from Ax Man, and is currently held together with gaff tape and prayer.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Kevin's Tater Tot Hotdish

While I still haven't adopted all of the habits and customs of a true midwesterner, I have learned to make a pretty solid Tater Tot Hotdish. It's getting cold out, and comfort food is on the menu. Here's my own personal recipe for Tater Tot Hotdish.

1.5 pounds ground beef (or vegetarian equivalent)
2 cans of cream soup (I like cream of mushroom)
1 soup can of milk
1 onion, chopped
1 can of peas
1 can of corn
1 package of tots
Grated cheese to top

Preheat your oven to 350°. Brown the ground beef and onions. Then add in the soup, milk, peas, and corn. While that's heating up, grab a baking pan and line the bottom with some tots. Pour the soup mixture over the tots, top with another layer of tots, and then sprinkle cheese over it all. Bake for 45 minutes. Enjoy.

Edit 1/18/2009: A couple of tips. Bake the tater tots before adding them to the dish. Throw some sliced carrots in with the peas and corn. And elk makes an excellent substitute for ground beef!

Right now, I'm watching my good friend Tom playing live at the final table of the European Poker Tour in Baden. So far, his strategy seems to be to dominate while looking as bored as possible.

My modeling career is really starting to take off.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Lollapalooza - Day Three

We started out with breakfast at Schuba's - the last time I had been there was when Jeremy and I saw Okkervil River on consecutive nights. The forecast warned of rain, so we brought along a couple of ponchos just in case. Erin tested them to make sure they worked.

The first act I saw on Sunday was Lupe Fiasco. The highlight was hearing him rap over Thom Yorke's The Eraser.

Jeremy and I caught the end of Iggy Pop while trying to get a good spot for Modest Mouse.

And then we waited for an hour, in the mud and heat - no room to even sit. The ground was littered with remnants from the Iggy Pop show - broken sunglasses, t-shirts, several orphaned shoes. This was the calm before the storm.

Modest Mouse was insane. The crowd lost it. At some point, I turned around to look at the sea of people behind me and saw a tide of crowd surfers coming in.

In the words of Jeremy: "The crowd was a pretty fascinating mix of out of control douche bags and good hardcore fans which really upped the electric atmosphere." Both can be seen in the above picture, along with Modest Mouse in the background.

The epic three day outdoor concert that was Lollapalooza ended with my original favorite band. This is the band that made me grow my hair long and wear flannel in fifth grade. In honor of the occasion, Jeremy and I wrote on our arms in Sharpie.

Pearl Jam was a party. I knew just about every single word to every single song.

The song they ended on was a cover of Keep on Rocking in the Free World. At some point, Eddie invited people from backstage to join him. Eddie climbs up on someone's shoulders, still singing. I look up at the jumbotron, and realize it's Dennis Rodman that Eddie has just mounted.

Lollapalooza was awesome.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Lollapalooza - Day Two

Another Lollapalesson: Pack on the calories early in the day. You will need them later. On day two, we hit up McGees - Jeremy wanted us to experience their build-your-own-bloody-mary bar. Here's a shot of me with "the hog," a dish highly recommended by our server, which includes: bacon, hash browns, ham, three eggs, pancakes, sausage, and french toast.

Oh my god, I'm From Barcelona may be my new favorite band. Adopting the more-is-more technique employed by The Polyphonic Spree, I think I counted at least 16 Swedes on stage. Including a guy dressed as a bear. I don't think he had an instrument. He may have had a microphone. Mostly he clapped along.

This was the band's first US performance. Here are a couple shots of lead singer Emanuel Lundgren and his uncontainable enthusiasm:

Tapes n' Tapes was next up. It was an odd experience - I think because I had seen them play at Grand Old Day a month prior with a much smaller crowd. Also the lead singer was wearing the same t-shirt. This was followed by Silverchair. Oh, Silverchair. I guess Erin thought it was hot when Daniel Johns took his shirt off. I left early to get a good spot at...

Rhymefest! This was a fun show. Rhymefest makes you wish you were from Chicago...

... and the Hold Steady make you proud to live in the Twin Cities. I truly love this band. No, Craig Finn - here's to you.

The day was capped off with the Yeah Yeah Yeahs and Muse. The picture above is a pretty good representation of what Muse's stage show looks like. After a healthy dose of sensory overload, we went home, ate Chicago deep dish pizza, and fell asleep.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Lollapalooza - Day One

The set up: Josh, Erin, one-armed Emily, and I will drive up to Chicago - meeting up with Matt and Jeremy for Lollapalooza. The six of us will sleep in Jeremy's studio apartment, located on the outskirts of Boystown, and ride the El each day to the festival. And there will be music, merrymaking, and dancing. And mud and sunburns and the stifling sweaty heat from 100,000 bodies pressed against yours. And hard decisions: Do I miss Clap Your Hands Say Yeah to get a good spot at the Hold Steady? If I drink this entire Camelbak full of water in order to avoid dying, will I have to pee in the middle of Daft Punk?

So we start the first day with six people sharing one shower, followed by bagels and a ride on the most terrifying form of public transportation in the world (barring perhaps India's Red Line busses): the El. After cheating death, I caught my first glimpse of Lollapalooza:

The first band I saw was Illinois. This was followed by Ted Leo and the Pharmacists - Ted fell midset and cut his hand open, but kept on playing. Here's Josh, awestruck:

After Ted Leo, we headed over to see the Polyphonic Spree. This is where I learned my first lesson of Lollapalooza: there is often a direct correlation between the number of people on stage and how awesome the show is. Jeremy and I managed to snake our way through the crowd for a good spot.

My expectations for this show were not that high. But the Spree brought it. They came out in paramilitary garb - black uniforms with red heart-shaped patches - an odd mix of symbolism.

The experience was euphoric. It felt as though there was something bigger than the music, this feeling of possibility. The concert really exploded when they covered Nirvana's Lithium. Here's Jeremy singing along:

Next on the list was MIA - and the earth shaking bass felt good.

Matt and I then checked out the Black Keys. Matt had been told in the past that he bears a striking resemblance to the lead singer. You be the judge:

The day was capped off with a performance by Daft Punk. I was unable to meet up with Josh, who had staked out a good spot several hours in advance. I could literally see him 20 feet away, but I had run into an unbending human wall. As the sun set on Chicago, the curtains opened to reveal a massive pyramid. Atop it stood two robots - sporting metallic helmets and designer leather suits. The crowd was ravenous, and there were times when I worried I might be crushed. The show was surreal - two robots sitting atop a pyramid playing French house.

Contentment mingled with exhaustion after ten hours of being outdoors, and we trekked it back to Jeremy's apartment to rest up for day two.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

ACM Recap

This year, the Alliance for Community Media Conference was held in Minneapolis, the fair city I currently call home. Last year I attended the conference in Boston (with two teenage girls in tow). This year, my entourage expanded, and we had five youth from SPNN attend all three days. Have I told you how awesome these guys are? With only three weeks left until my AmeriCorps term is up at SPNN, I can't tell you how I often I am blown away by them. There is so much joy in being a part of this.

A few highlights:

  • The ACM Youth Media Screening at the Walker Art Center! I put a good deal of work into coordinating elements of this, but the credit really goes to SPNN's Youth Advisory Committee, who really put in the work to make the event a success. The thing I loved about this was the youth involvement - all of the videos were created by youth, the event was emceed by youth. Too often we talk about youth rather than asking them to talk about themselves.
  • I spoke on a panel on Friday. This was a bit nerve-wracking, but I had Bekka and Nicola there to help me out. We spoke about the role of youth in Community Media Centers. I placed a great deal of emphasis on our Youth Advisory Committee, which I believe is the best example of how we approach youth involvement at SPNN. In short: create and foster community, ensure representation/voice/power, and encourage investment and ownership in the organization.
  • Meeting incredibly smart and creative people. And then seeing some of them dance along to the World's Most Dangerous Polka Band at Nye's Polonaise. And then biking around the 14th floor of the Marriot on Rox's bike at 3 in the morning.
  • The six hour Hands-On Youth Media Workshop we ran on Saturday. We worked with youth from around the country to create some really amazing videos about the ACM conference. These videos were shown during the closing ceremony, although not without nightmarish technical difficulties.
  • Realizing that I am damn good at what I do.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Baby's first webcam
While stranded in a coffee shop during today's severe thunderstorm, we managed to get my sister's webcam up and running. Here's my first "live" view of Reidar. He was a sleepy pants.

So it's official.I'm an uncle! I'm proud to introduce Reidar James. Reidar (pronounced rider) is Nordic and means winged warrior. I'm guessing they chose it because of its unique ability to fit into popular songs. I can just imagine Karen and Charles singing him to sleep with a rendition of "Reidar's on the Storm," DMX's "Ruff Reidar Anthem," or Tupac Shakur's "My Ambitionz as a Reidar."

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Big news, everyone. I'm officially...

not an uncle yet! But if Karen were to have a child, I like to think that it would look something like the picture above. Even though the blessed event has yet to transpire, Washington has been a lot of fun. What have I been up to?

  • Spending a lot of QT with the fam.
  • Playing with Bella, pretty much the coolest dog ever.(Usually she has much more energy than in this picture)
  • Trying to get my dad into the Arcade Fire. And my mom into the Pipettes.
  • Reading - I've gotten through The Pirates! in an Adventure with Scientists (thanks rox!), Fight Club (thanks jana!), and The Invention of Hugo Cabret (thanks mom!).
  • Buying these banging shoes:
  • Sampling some of the finest hand-crafted gin the Pacific Northwest has to offer. Hand-numbered and made with wild juniper berries in Bend, Oregon, Cascade Mountain Gin is fantastic. It was fun to hear my mom exclaim, "95 proof? Oh my!"

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Gone fishin

Yet another reason to like Minnesota during the summer - going up north to cabins. Last weekend we went up to Josh's cabin - 3 hours west, 1 hour north, and take a left at the cluster of pro-life billboards. You know what I like? Highlights!

  • Fishing was awesome. I grew up fishing with my dad and his dad - both Finns. Pretty sure fishing is in my blood. And look, girls can fish too!
  • Ok, so my camera ran out of batteries during fishing - that's the end of the pictures. Sorry. Try to imagine a picture of a delicious, overstuffed juicy lucy, because that's our next highlight.
  • According to Wikipedia, "A jucy lucy (or juicy lucy) is a cheeseburger having the cheese inside the meat patty rather than on top. A piece of cheese is surrounded by raw meat and cooked until it melts, resulting in a molten core of cheese within the patty." Mmmm... molten core. This was my first experience making one, but not my last.
  • What is it about road trips that makes me feel the need to buy ridiculous crap from gas stations? Emily, thank you for the chromed out necklace. You're welcome for the novelty air freshener.
  • We took a trip down memory lane, stopping by the Dairy Queen where, once up a time, Jeremy and I let a cute girl know that she could do better. In ketchup. Speaking of Jeremy, he's going on a date tonight with a girl he met on craigslist. Awesome.
I'm heading to Washington state tomorrow, where I will become an uncle. It's a lot of responsibility, this uncle business, but I think I can handle it. Now - to bike home and pack.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

The end of an era.

Those are a few of the words that Andrea chose to describe yesterday. It was the last day of Set It Up for the season - and my last day of Set It Up ever. It hit me, at some point this morning, biking to work - my last day.

Set It Up is the reason why I tell people I love my job. For a good part of my day, I sit at my desk and play work. I answer phones and respond to e-mails and coordinate programs and work in an office. At the end of my day, I get to stand up, walk away from my desk, and hang out with young people. And they're wonderful. And there's energy - creating things, making messes, making inappropriate comments, making fun of each other, talking about school and life and parents and last night and New York and LA and maybe college. And for whatever reason they respect me, and that's awesome. And the one thing I keep coming back to is how much they inspire me.

To end on a less sappy note - one of my favorite parts of yesterday was giving end-of-the-year gifts. For our incredible volunteers, Andrea and I decided on two pounds of Swedish Fish and framed photos of us. Awesome.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

It has been a long weekend.

Mr. Barr graced us with his presence from Thursday night until about half an hour ago. Highlights:

  • Making Jeremy lie in wait behind a couch in Rox's garage to surprise Josh on his 25th birthday.
  • Making lamburgers. Seriously, this might be my new favorite thing-to-grill. Ground lamb, roma tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, baby spinach, pesto safflower mayo, toasted bun, sweet christ.
  • Josh's birthday party. Followed by: Biking home at 4 in the morning, watching Veronica Mars 6 hours later, waking up my friends and making them go to the triple rock with me for brunch, arguing about season 4 of the oc, learning to love bloody marys, napping in the afternoon and feeling amazing, driving lazy people home.
  • Finding a video game that Jeremy will actually play. No one can resist the allure of wii bowling. It also appears that erin/magnum's reign of terror may have drawn to a close.
  • Spending most of a day sitting/reading/napping/biking at Lake of the Isles, taking the occasional pull from Nalgene bottles filled with floating limes.
  • Making two pans (one vegetarian, one awesome) of tator tot hotdish. I seldom feel so Minnesotan or domestic.
  • Having several shoulders to cry on while watching the last episode of Veronica Mars ever.
  • Getting everyone together for beer lunch at Lyle's and using laundry quarters to buy novelty items "imported from the orient!" from the bathroom vending machine.
  • The impromptu deck party at Josh, Erin, and Emily's. Sometimes spontaneous, unplanned parties are the best. I wasn't planned, and look how I turned out!
  • Convincing Jeremy to stay an extra day.
  • Emily coining the phrase "death pants" to describe how she felt in the morning.
  • Making top 3 lists with Jeremy over breakfast at the CC Club. Top 3 breakfasts in the Twin Cities: Country Benedict from the CC Club, Crab Cake Benedict from the Highland Grill, and of course the Mother Trucker from Triple Rock (with tator tots substituted for home fries).
  • Receiving a several paragraph long e-mail from Matt about the Golden Girls - "no woman should be that tall - she's a giantess."
  • Biking. This has become one of the most rewarding elements of my life right now. I somehow even enjoyed getting caught in a torrential downpour with Jeremy and Rox on the ride back from downtown Saint Paul.
  • Finally getting around to updating my blog.