Don’t Be a Billy: Staying Safe Online

I have fond memories of the Encyclopedia Britannica films back in school. It always meant completely outdated clothing and actors teaching us about everything from science to hygiene. Heck, it was only slightly more modern than a film-strip. (Ding!)

That's why this little number compliments of really struck home. One of my favorite film genres addressing an important topic.

It also got me in the mood for a little education a la Goofy.

Adventures in Video

I’ve spent a lot of the last few weeks…even few months…doing more with video. I’m really loving doing more with a medium I really haven’t done much with since college. And yes, it has taken me away from blogging regularly here. (Insert Social Media guilt here.)

Over the last couple of years I’ve managed to get a real kick out of using Animoto and some other services to build elaborate slide shows with some soundtracks, but beyond that I’ve been more of a viewer than producer.

That changed for a couple of reasons. First, my adventures with Minnov8 have allowed me to do some interviewing with members of the interactive community and some “man on the street” stuff here in the Twin Cities. It offers a nice change from a straight forward interview article/post format. And frankly, doing this stuff along with my friend and colleague Steve Borsch, it has proven to be a blast…not to mention working with guys like Brian Stemmler and 612authentic is also a treat.

The second reason for this new zeal for video was the purchase of my Flip Mino HD. From chronicling my trip to SXSWi to interviews, like the one I did for Localtone Radio, to filming family events I’m happy to report that I haven’t had to hoist the antique handy cam to my eye for quite awhile. The Mino has allowed me to take video I wouldn’t normally have considered because of the inconvenience and iMovie has allowed me to do some editing as well.


I’ve even done some aggregating and embedding of video for many of the projects I’m involved in like ComicTwit.

I suggest that you spend some more time experimenting and integrating video into your online travails. You’ll find it will provide a more personal touch and bring some refreshing change to any static text or photo projects you’re involved in…whether it’s original or shared content.

Just For Fun…by “Beans Harpoon” Wilson

What if you had been born to Sarah Palin?

As fuel for plenty of humor, I am a big fan of Sarah Palin. Yikes, the Republican VP nominee is like a comedy frickin’ gold mine. The Tina Fey send up on SNL last weekend alone was epic.

Her, shall we say, unique choice of names for her kids is the basis of the Sarah Palin Baby Name Generator from David Harrington. According to Harrington, “Sarah Palin has picked out an All-American set of names for her children.  There’s Track, Trig, Bristol, Willow, and Piper. Ever wonder,  What would your name would be if Sarah Palin was your mother?  Well now you can find out!”

On behalf of my wife, Lock Pepper, my kids, Snooker Hinge and Flex Gunship, and me, Beans Harpoon, have a little fun at Ms. Palin’s expense. It’s OK, I’m sure she can take it. After all she’s Sarah Baracuda…and she “can see russia from her house.”



What ya been doin’?…The Debut of ComicTwit

So, I’ve been somewhat remiss in posting. Here’s what happened. (This is the part where the screen gets wavy indicating a flashback.)…This Twitter thing is cool…interesting thoughts, some cool links, some witty stuff… Wait a minute… Comedy+wit+Twitter. How about ComicTwit.”

There it is…in a nutshell, I decided to create and launch a new Twitter application called ComicTwit. Though more of a music/radio/media guy, being focused here on RemainComm and Localtone Systems, I really thought this would be fun to release into the ether.

Twitter is a fast growing service and I think, with it’s current focus
on addressing issues of scale, will emerge as the leader in the
micro-blogging world. and though there are plenty of joke sites out there…believe me I get to see allot of them now that I’m facing the need to “seed” ComicTwit, I’d like it to be a bit more than that. What my real goal is to encourage the Twitterverse, a group that is already adept at condensing their thoughts into 140 characters, to create or interpret jokes, anecdotes, and one-liners to help amuse those that follow along. It’s really that simple. Why not have a little levity pop up on your Twitter stream about every one to two hours. Hopefully, that will always leave followers wanting more…one of the cardinal rules of comedy, ya know.

check it out. I challenge you to come up comedy in just 140 characters. Sure, One-liners are easy but jokes are another story, one that has to be told in very few words. Though it doesn’t have to be original, fresh comedy is great so why not try out your new stuff before your next appearance on Conan…or at lunch with your peeps or staff meeting. If not, just make us laugh. It couldn’t hurt and frankly it may be more fun than some of the other ‘Tweets’ or another link to being ‘Rickrolled‘.

In the meantime, I’ll be back at posting here more often. Next, some tools for organizing your online world.

High School rocks…again!

It was the same thing every day, more than once each day. “Dad, are you sure you set the VCR right?” My family and I were on a short vacation along the North shore of Minnesota amidst the beauty of the Lake Superior (“…the big lake they call Gitchee Gumee “-Gordon Lightfoot) shoreline and my daughter’s biggest concern was High School Musical 2. Why not? She’s under 10 and the beauty and history of Split Rock Lighthouse is nothing compared to whether Troy and Gabriella will experience that first kiss (they do) or what the dance numbers will be like (they’re great).

We arrived home late on Sunday night and there was absolutely no way we were going to hit the comfort of a familiar bed without watching “the TV event of the season”
.  So for the next two hours, all of us, my wife, two kids, and me, ate pizza and watched the continuing story of Troy, Gabriella, Sharpay and the rest of the East High Wildcats. If you have kids, I’m sure you did the same thing a few nights earlier. You may have watched even if you don’t have kids. The show, like the first one, is just plain fun and 2 hours well spent.

I smiled through the whole thing (OK, maybe with the exception of the scene where Troy dances solo in the desert. That was a bit awkward.). I was smiling not only because it was a great production but, because my family was together…smiling. We enjoyed a show without threat of having to hit the remote because it was inappropriate or surfing channels because it was dull. What a great chance to spend time with the kids. We laughed and made comments to each other throughout the whole show.  Since then, my daughter and, though he would never admit it, her older brother spend a good deal of time singing and dancing around the house.

The Disney Channel has proven you don’t need to shoot something, blow something up, slime someone or make a star of a talking sponge to truly entertain and motivate a kid. 17 million people proved on a Friday night in August (and, I’m sure for many more nights to come) that “edgy”  isn’t the only thing that cuts through. Yep, a good old fashioned beach movie will entertain millions and make millions at the same time. I’m good with that.