C’monnnn Spring Break!

I’m ready for a vacation from the normal routine. Spring break could not come at a better time for me. School is the normal overload but I just want to do other right now. My 92 Ford Festiva is telling me it wants me to get my hands dirty and replace it’s left front axle. My 82 Rx-7 is screaming at me because it hasn’t been started in about a year and a half. The motor is carbon locked, I’ve tried to break it free a few ways with zero success. I just ordered the Atkin’s rebuild DVD but I had it delivered to my Father’s place for safe keeping (Yeh my neighborhood is filled with crooks and thieves so what?). So, I really want to watch that and start tearing the engine apart to figure out how bad the damage is/what the hell I need to order for this thing… Also, I need to discuss with my folks what the hell I’m going to do about my living situation which just fell a part this week. I knew it was coming because my room mate is graduating next fall and will probably be leaving town after that so it’s not a surprise but I was expecting this event to occur sometime after her graduation not before it…and she just called the landlord today to let him know we’ll be out by May 1st. Of course, the week of May 1st also happens to be my finals week but I’ll manage. It’s just a bummer that I’ve got the whole moving/refiguring out living scenario stage ahead and it doesn’t help that I have my boxer, pretty much no friends or roommate candidates, and $0.00). I have a wonderful girlfriend who I love very much but she’ll most likely be leaving for grad school next fall so she’s out of the picture as far as a potential room mate goes. I won’t bitch about it anymore but it basically ain’t going to be easy which isn’t a surprise as LIFE usually AIN’T EASY so whoopdyfuckeroo. I think I’ll cut this post short because I’ve been so damn negative lately and I really don’t care to put that out there on the interwebs. Hip Hip Hooray for spring break, FORMULA 1, and working on my cars! Everything else can suck my left testicle for a bit, sorry for the visual but not really since you have no idea what my testicles look like or even if I have a left one to suck.

Also, keeping with the theme of getting some artwork up on here I’m posting a couple of things. One is a silly little sketch I did while attempting to pay attention in this boring as FUCK math class that we have to take as industrial designers. The other photo is of a VonFranco model that I just finished putting together (except for decals..). I’d also like say thanks for the likes/follows hopefully I can hold your interest but no promises!

Sketch1 VanDykeModel

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I haven’t forgotten about you Bloggie!

It’s been busy as usual and I haven’t found the time to get on here until now but I haven’t forgotten! There are a few projects that I’m juggling at the moment but I’ll just mention one for now. In my sculpture class, which I find more interesting than my Industrial Design class at the moment, we are making something the instructor has termed “plaster biggies”. Like the project name implies, we will be creating very large plaster sculptures. The process in which this will be done will first involve the creation of a plywood substructure, that will be covered in a wire mesh, then plaster/joint compound will be applied to the surface, and finally that will be sanded/painted or whatever. He has given us a conceptual theme to this project which he hasn’t done in the past but he wants to see if people can begin to think in that way as they’ll have to speak the language of concept through out the rest of their careers as artists. Anywho, the theme is “inheritance” which is a pretty broad theme and can be approached from many different avenues. I decided to just go the traditional route of inheritance that being the Paternal kind. I’m making a very large piston and connecting rod which is supposed to symbolize the inheritance of automotive wisdom/culture that I’ve received from my father (an industry guru and the quintessential car dude). This instructor has us make little ‘mockup’ models for our project and to be honest I love making these little models out of oil based clay as much as I like making the real projects. With this project we had to make a second mock up out of cardboard/bristol board type stuff (I used beer packaging…) in order to figure out how we are going to create a plywood substructure. So I’ve included a shot of both for your viewing enjoyment.


Not much else I feel like reporting about right now. I’m creating a wooden (non-functional) rotary engine in my industrial design class so that will be pretty cool I’ll post some pictures when that gets underway. Hopefully construction will commence for the big plaster piston sculpture within this next week and can post progress shots… Also, got my updated fishing license and first cast of the season yesterday! Summer is on it’s way!

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Feline Frustrations

The cats in my apartment drive me absolutely NUTS. They don’t belong to me so unfortunately I can’t just toss them outside when they piss me off. They are litter mates and absolutely bonkers. My boxer used to torment them and scare them off but now it appears that things have taken a turn for the WORST…


The cat in this picture is Toodles and his sister is Moonpie. Toodles is pretty “special”. I like to think that he has some kind of cat Asperger’s syndrome. He likes to knock over any cup of water left unattended and he damn near fried my new Macbook Pro a couple weeks ago. If he had damaged it I’m pretty sure I would’ve been having cat STEW for supper. Toodles overestimates himself in many ways but the most common is in his acrobatic skill. He believes that he can make these outrageous jumps from obstacle to obstacle that only the most fit and agile of feline Olympians would be able to make. He couldn’t be more wrong in his gross overestimation of his abilities as he falls short, overshoots, just plain WHIFFS damn near all the time. This wouldn’t be a problem if he were trying to jump from one tree to another outside but inside the consequence always involve a cacophony of shit falling off of whatever surface he was attempting a stunt on. More or less he is a massive fool and having caught him with my dog Cash I’m worried. I’m worried that Cash will start to succumb to Toodles’s destructive/carefree/most-moronic way of living. I can’t bear the thought!

Moonpie is Toodles’s sister and obviously considers herself the better half. She outwits Toodles every chance she gets and many times is the cause for his “attempts” at defying gravity. It should be mentioned that Moonpie has mastered gravity and I’ve seen her run on walls like Trinity in the goddamned MATRIX. She must really get a kick out of swatting her brother in the ass and then watching him jump on to a table and knock everything down like goddamned bowling pins. Moonpie is the evil one. She delights in her brother’s torture, she likes the damp/dark places, and she relishes decaying and dieing things. I could totally see her taking part in some satanic ritual involving a mouse in the basement.

The other day I came home and found that Cash had ripped up a couch pillow while I was at school. I was pretty pissed as it had been a long day already and now I had to clean up mounds of fluff but whattayagunnado? I imagine that if I had to stay home for hours at a time with no one else around but the cats( and I couldn’t eat them)…There’s no telling what I’d do to vent my frustrations. And, it remains to be proven that it was Cash, the cats could’ve done a professional cover up job and framed his ass.

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Shoulder Pain.

Well, I’m on the couch watching Star Trek Next Gen. and nursing my shoulder with some 16 oz PBRs. I don’t know why it started hurting but the pain has been growing all day right below my left shoulder blade. I feel like I’m being a pussy but DAMN! I’m medicating with a few beers and they’re helping little by little to muffle the pain. Mostly, I’m all angsty because I don’t understand how/why it hurts.

SO, I’m going to attempt to deduce the instigator of this anguish with a little detective work MY DEAR WATSON! I believe that it had to have occurred Monday because when I woke up this morning it ached ever so much. Now, is there anyway to deduce a specific time/action that was the root or sole cause? I very much doubt that this will be possible considering there are too many probable causes for this hurt.

Lets begin Monday morning, having spent the night at my Father’s house on Sunday, I woke up on his couch. THAT is suspect #1 considering that I like to sleep on my back and the back of the couch was against my left shoulder which most likely contorted my body like a Rold Gold during sleep and created a satisfactory condition for an amazing cramp to arise! Next is suspect #2 I moved a few pieces of furniture from my dad’s home to my car and then in to my home and up the stairs to my bedroom. (Note, how I pointedly mention the stairs as these object were not very light…) Now we come to suspect #3, which was the sanding and varnishing of a wooden sculpture that I worked on until 2 a.m. this morning. Lastly, suspect #5, in exhaustion I awoke at 6 a.m. and had classes until 6 p.m.. These suspects are not in hierarchical but they are chronological order

Ok so, I guess the most likely cause of my soreness is the combination of the above. Nevertheless, the cramping and aching leaves me feeling old and I don’t want to think about what this type of thing feels like 20 years from now as I’m sure it’s amplified ten fold! Bummer!

And, for those of you following me now, as promised a picture of some of my latest work. And for those unfamiliar I’m in an Industrial Design program at an art school and one of our latest assignments is to create a fish out of paper. The idea is to create something that could be used and reproduced for a point of sale display. I’m going to make some slight modifications to this mock up and then it will be cut on the laser cutter. My shoulder is feeling better already, it must be the therapeutic effects of blogging! (Or it’s the PBR?)


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The Ice Ballet

This morning I woke up and discovered that my little world had been layered with a 1/4 inch sheet of ice. I stepped out on to my porch with my dog and I’m sure my face had a look on it that roughly translated to “fuck”. My dog looked up at me and turned his head ever so slightly and he probably was asking me “What the fuck?”. I just shook my head and let out a big sigh and we proceeded to try and walk around the block. Our first obstacle was the stairs that lead down from my porch to the side walk. They were covered and I didn’t have any salt or sand to try and give us a better coefficient of friction to work with. I went first and my dog looked on (obviously he expected I was going to eat shit) and then cautiously started stepping down the stairs. He slipped about midway down and tumbled/skidded the rest of the way down (only about 3 stairs but I still felt bad). I picked him up and took my time carrying him the rest of the way to the side walk to avoid the same thing happening on more stairs.

With the stair obstacle behind us we found ourselves on the sidewalk which was had been turned in to a slip and slide because of the ice. I quickly made the astute observation that I could get some friction if I walked on the grass! My dog, who had made a complete mental recovery from the stair tumble, was having a blast. Every time I’d take a cautious couple of steps and then kick my legs and arms around wildly as I slipped and fought with gravity to remain upright, my pup thought that was the signal that I wanted to PLAY! So then he’d go bat shit and start hopping around like a goddamned jack rabbit but it must be remembered that we were on frictionless surfaces. He would hop up and then land, his legs would splay out underneath of him, he’d slide for a few feet and kick wildly to turn around and face me as if to say “CAMMMMONN!!! THIS IS AWESOME!!!”. This whole process would repeat itself every time I would do my little arm and leg dance routine. I’m sure we looked like some kind of synchronized meth head ballet… What the hell is a “meth head ballet”?

Any who, it took us some 45 minutes to do our normal 15 minute walk but we both had some fun so it was OK and I anticipated this delay so I was still on time for classes/work. Which, reminds me to state here that school has been tough and very time consuming lately. I’m in my second year of an Industrial Design program and it’s taking it’s toll. Time management is key and I’m slowly figuring out how to manage my time but there is definitely a learning curve. I’ve got quite a lot of work to do today in fact and I’d like to post some pictures of my work on here because I imagine that some folks may dig a little visual stimulation and it’s also what I’m doing with most of my time. More on that later… In the mean time, the ice has melted away and everything is back to normal so I guess I’ll have to put my methy dancing shoes away for another icy day! Have a good Saturday folks!!



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Winter Listen,

Please …go away. At least cut your stay short by a month. I understand that you may be an essential season for various ecological reasons but I don’t want you around any longer. You’ve nipped at my fingers, toes, and nose with your frozen teeth for too many days in a row. I want to be able to casually lounge outside and watch the sunset without freezing to my chair. I want to grill again for god sake! I’m a man! Do you know what days in a row without grilling meat over an open flame does to me??!

Winter you chilly cheeky old bastard it’s about time you packed your bags and went back to the polls. My balls may finally resurface from the depths of my stomach and return to normal size. When I walk outside moisture will no longer freeze and turn my beard in to a bushel of needles glued to my paper thin skin. My gas bill won’t purge every last dime from my pockets. I will no longer have to dawn a suit of insulated armor in order to walk my poor dog who really doesn’t like shitting in sub zero temperatures.

Just consider it Winter. Pretty please.

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Dog Water Etiquette

I don’t know why I feel like blogging this but the feeling is none the less there. I want to talk about refreshing a dog’s water bowl. I think that this simple task is one of the nicest things that a person can do for his/her dog. A dog’s water bowl left unattended and unrefreshed becomes a lovely stew of dust, hair, excess saliva, and partially chewed food amongst other organisms. This nasty soup must then be begrudgingly lapped up by your canine companion. At this point some people may be saying “well duhhh….” and if that is the case then good! However, some folks only deal with a dogs water bowl when it is empty/dried up or so thick with stuff that the dog is going to the toilet. Everyone knows why dogs go to the toilet right? It’s a never ending supply of freshwater… if people flush on a regular basis.

Here is how I see it, my dog and I have entered an unspoken but very tangible agreement. I provide fresh water, food, plenty of outside time, and a roof and in return my doggy loves me, unconditionally. I think I’m getting the deal of a life time and I also do my best job to love him unconditionally in return. Of course, I have trouble though since I’m human and I get all emotional and have my various moral pitfalls that my pup seems untroubled with. The relationship is not perfect and at times tries the extremes of my patience levels, especially after a very long day. But, I figure it is the very least I can do to rinse out my dog’s bowl and put fresh water in it at least 5 or 6 times a day. You may think this wasteful and if that’s the case I must posit a question “Why in the world do we shit in perfectly good drinking water?”.  I challenge humans to drink out of a bowl on a floor all day and see where their satisfaction level is at the end of the day when bugs, hair, and dust has made its new home in your WATER SUPPLY. Oh yeah, don’t forget that you have paws (not hands) and you can not reach the faucet.

It isn’t that big of a deal it’s just something that I thought about the other day and felt compelled to write a little something. I know plenty of people that love their pets but can sometimes forget this detail and in some ways I can see how that might happen. It doesn’t take that much more effort to rinse out the bowl though before filling it again and you make your pooch that much more smiley. It’s well worth the extra minute. My boy is happy I think so…


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