Regard with amusement this e-mail that Steve received from some spluttering nincompoop:
you fucken basterds ! change your name to jigga boo shit . there is already a band called hence the name , MY BAND . go to it .net you .com fag !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Yes you counted right, that's 17 exclamation points in a row, and as we all know, the amount of exclamation points at the end of a sentence is directly proportional to the sincerity of the author. So this guy really really really really really means it. We should take him very seriously. I just wish someone had told me that registering a .com address meant that we were fags! Then I would have registered a much hipper .net address when we registered oh.... over 3 years ago. Let's just pull up a whois search to see when was registered... May of this year. My my my.

So yes, there is another band that calls themselves Hence The Name, and has registered, You know, I really thought it was awesome when our songs started showing up on Napster. Now we have bands naming themselves the same thing. Piracy and plagiarism are the sincerest forms of flattery, I say, and now that we've gotten hate mail, we know we've truly arrived.

It's funny, because Steve and I went through a whole brainstorming session to determine our band's name, and some of the names we rejected, even though they were really cool names, because other bands had already used them. We could have been "Serendipity" or "Moon Patrol", but we were very adamant about having a name that was not already in use. Obviously, not all bands feel this way.

I guess we should have bothered with registering a trademark on the name, but that costs a few hundred dollars, and the band is more of a hobby than a business investment. Besides, if HTN2 wants to register a trademark, we have enough published material and other evidence that we've been around for the past 5 years to prove ourselves as the originators of the band name. I'm really not that concerned that there's another band named Hence The Name, but I just don't understand why they're not concerned that their band name isn't original. Steve and I botherd to do research, why couldn't they be bothered to do so? I mean, it's not like it would have been that hard to find out that the name was already in use, we even registered for crying out loud!

So I'm tempted to write a nice thank-you note to Mr. David Perez, our critic and author of the barely comprehensible e-mail, for his suggestion of our new name, but I imagine that would probably be a waste of time and energy. Hmmm... it would probably generate some humorous content, though.


Never have I been more tempted to steal content.

Well, now that I've put off posting about it for a few weeks, here's pictures of me at Ernie's birthday party (Thanks to shutterbug Jesse of Sadly, I lost the hula duel with Chrissy, 2 to 1. If I were a lesser, more whiny man, I would point out that she had the larger hula hoop both times she won, and I had it the one time I won, but I'm better than making up excuses about why I lost. Besides, any competition I'm not automatically the best at is stupid and for losers anyhow, it's an established fact.


And just to leap even further over the line into inappropriate areas:

Suppose, hypothetically, that I had taken nude pictures of myself when I was 17. Would it then be illegal for me to sell these photos to someone for pornographic purposes today? I mean, no one's being exploited in that case.

Would it be immoral for me to do so?

Okay, I know you can "make love" to someone, and I know you can "fuck" someone. You can "fuck" someone in the ass, but can you "make love" to someone in the ass? Or maybe it would be "making love" to their ass? Somehow it just doesn't sound right.


It's that time of the year again! Mall-Surfing Season!

What? You don't know about Mall-Surfing? Okay then, let me fill you in:

Mall-Surfing is an exciting and dangerous X-Treeeem sport developed by myself and my friend Paris as a fun and cost-effective alternative to shopping at the mall during the crazy post-Thanksgiving consumer-craze.

The playfield is any mall, although oblong indoor malls are preferred. It also helps to have a two-story mall so that there are essentially two Mall-Surfing tracks in one. Mall-surfing can be played at any time, though it is most chellenging and fun when the mall is packed with mall-goers.

The object of Mall-Surfing is to get from one end of the mall to the other as fast as possible without:
  • Colliding with any other mall patron hard enough to affect their shopping experience.
  • Earning the attention of the security staff.
  • Being ejected from the mall.
The first person to reach the other side wins. It's that simple.

Typically the best way to do it is to briskly walk from one end to the other, as breaking into a run will attract the attention of the security guards. Ejection from the mall by a security guard is of course, immediate disqualification. It is best to observe the walking/shopping patterns of those people ahead of you to best plan your route, master the art of walking sideways without slowing down in order to slip through those narrow gaps between crowds of teenagers, and examine your route ahead of time to try and discover any shortcuts.

Behavior such as leaping over benches or cutting through patches of plastic plants is allowed, but of course is risky and may lead to the aforementioned mall ejection.

Remember not to collide with other mall-goers! Be stealthy, be speedy, be safe and have fun!

Realize this:

One day you will pick up a paper and read that Eminem is dead.

One day a friend will call and tell you that you're not going to believe this, but Madonna is dead.

One day you're going to be reading the news on a website and discover that I actually died three years previously.

One day you will be viewing your holographic tele-projection screen and your program will be interrupted with the special announcement that Michael Jackson has been successfully destroyed by the joint efforts of the free nations.

One day David Bowie is going to psychically project the news that his mission is a fialure, the human race has destroyed itself and he is returning home.


You'll never guess where I went yesterday! Okay, I'll tell you. Ami took me on a surprise mystery trip to the Jelly Belly Factory!!! Yaaayyyy!!!!

One of the only things besides a poor memory that Ronald Reagan and I have in common is a predeliction for the delectable gelatin confections known as the Jelly Belly. Whether carefully selecting a handful of fruit-flavored beans, creating specific recipes or just cramming my mouth full of handfuls of them, Jelly Bellies offer such a wide variety of flavor sensations that I'm surprised it isn't everyone's favorite candy.

And if you make it all the way out to godforsaken Fairfield, CA, just beyond the Anheuser-Busch brewery, Herman Goelitz Candy Co. will give you a free tour of the factory where their various sweets are produced. Now, they dont' actually make people work on the weekends for you to stare at as you walk by overhead, but they had these handy videos showing what the people would be doing if they were actually in to work that day (Of course, the tour guides, cafe workers, and gift-shop cashiers are still working.). Thank goodness my workplace doesn't have tours. I can't imagine wha tit must be like to have throngs of tourists looking down at you while you're trying to do your job.

I don't know if maybe they just showed this on the video to make themselves look good, but damn to they put a lot of TLC into their Jelly Bellies. I mean, I know they're gourmet Jelly Beans, but dudes are walking by with clipboards covered in little grids filled with dollops of Jelly goo, to check the consistency of the coloring, and then people are dipping sample conatiners into the vats and peering through them to check their specific gravity. I'm pretty sure the videos were for real, though, the person who was watching the sheets of Jelly Beans roll by on the conveyor belt to pick out irregular ones genuinely seemed like she wanted to die. Still, most people seemed genuinely concerned that their benas were absolutely perfec tin every way. I guess that's why they cost so damn much.

Unless you buy Bellyflops, that is. The tour may be free, but it sure gets you geared to snarf down some muthafuckin' Jelly Beans. I went into the gift whop and left about $20+ bucks poorer, but on the other hand I got about 16 pounds of BellyFlops. Hey, you can only get them at the factory! I've got to stock up!

Goelitz also manufactures the Bertie Bott's Every Flavor Beans, from the Harry Potter books, appropriately enough. Actually, it's just Bertie Bott's 20 Flavor Beans in our Muggle world, but still, they have flavors like Black Pepper, Dirt, Booger, Sardine, Earwax, and Vomit. Of course, I had to try this stuff, but I only made it as far as Sardine before I could no longer proceed. In case, you were wondering, yes, they really do taste like what they claim. As delicious as it sounds, Sardine Jelly Beans are, in fact, foul. Actually each flavor tastes more like Sardine N' Sugar, Dirt N' Sugar, or Earwax N' Sugar, since they still contain the powdered sugar use to keep the beans from sticking together while they are being coated (I learned that on the tour!).

Speaking of wack-ass candy flavors. Even outside of the Harry Potter canon, they make some pretty far-out ones. I picked up a bag of buttered toast and Tabasco flavors. Jalepeno seems to have gone the way of the dodo (Dodo flavor coming out next March), but buttered popcorn is still going strong. The tour guide said it was their most popular flavor, but I think he was just yanking our chain. I guess that after buttered popcorn, they saw that people will eat pretty much any flavor of these damn things, so now they're trying to see just how weird they can get and still sell beans. More power to them, but I ain't going near that buttered popcorn crap for neither love nor money, it tastes like honey-dipped ballsac or something.

Secret New Jelly Belly Recipes!

1 Peach + 1 Mandarin Orange = Fuzzy Navel
1 Cherry + 1 Cream Soda + 2 Mandarin Orange = Shirley Temple
1 Sardine + 1 Fudge = Chocolate-Dipped Penis
1 Sardine + 1 Spinach + 1 Black Pepper = Caeser Salad
1 Tabasco + 2 Peanut Butter + 2 Buttered Popcorn + 14 Booger = A Delicious T-Bone Steak (Medium Rare)