Forever is a Very Long Time

    In the age of the internet, nothing is forgotten.

    Working as a non-union actor in Los Angeles the first few years after college, I naturally sought out any opportunity I could to get paid for my craft (and, honestly, not much has changed.  Anyone want to hire me?).  That included taking some modeling gigs through my first commercial agent.  Most people think of modeling as Victoria's Secret and Calvin Klein - all glamor and fashion - but there is quite a bit of work out there that might not occur to you.  Every photo of hands holding a taco, or smiling kid, fresh from the dentist... well, that's a model, too.  And yes, I took a few gigs where only my hands were shown... or my back, or me so far away from camera you can't even really tell it is me at all.

    But now that I've garnered a bit of a following, my earlier work is noticed by people who recognize me.  Every ridiculous photo, or stupid commercial I did is out there on the web.  Which is fine... and often funny.  I'll admit many a TRS fan has asked me how my Roomba family is doing because of this little video:

    But sometimes I'm totally thrown by something I did long ago that surfaces in the most unexpected way.  Today, @tomtranmer on twitter sent me this link to a book on Amazon.  Yep, that's me on the cover.  I don't endorse this book or even know what is in it.  I was paid a couple hundred dollars years ago to take that picture for a completely different product, in a completely different context.  But there I am on the cover of a book.  Freakin' weird.  

    And because it was non-union, I get no extra compensation for this photo's reuse.

    So let this be a lesson to young actors and "models"... hell, even those of us who throw pictures online without regard for EULAs and ownership rights:

    Nothing goes away.


    Your Pithy Replies: WoW vs College

    I logged into WoW today (oh, I'm waaaay back into the addiction), on the sixth anniversary of the game's release, and remembered back to when I logged on that first day, way back then.  Log queues for over-capacity realms, frequent server crashes... ah, those were the days.  

    Then it hit me... 6 years?  Even at the rate I went through college (I was on the 5 year plan) I have been visiting Azeroth longer than I visited UCSB.  So I tweeted:

    "Jesus.  I just realized I've been playing WoW longer than I was in college."

    Below are some of my favorite responses.  As always, you can follow me at


    @StephanieLantry  Which one has had a better ROI?


    @HebrooooHammer  You know you're a nerd when...


    @JPierce  The question is, which has taught you more and which has caused more alcohol consumption?


    @StevenBennett  If only school was $15 a month and you rolled for grades...


    @prsgame  Which was more worthwhile?


    @zombiebrainz  Was that a prayer or a statement? :)



    A Life in the Theater

    This is the exact conversation every actor has had a thousand times.  Plus, it is proof that everything is funnier in a robot voice.  I laugh out loud and cry inside:


    I Don't Get It: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

    There are popular books, and then there are popular books.  Every so often there will be a novel that garners so much attention you can't escape it.  The new "it" book of the moment.  Every bookstore is advertising it, every person is picking it up, movies are being made of it.  Da Vinci Code is a great example.  At a certain point you start to think, "Well, I'd love to know what all the fuss is about."  Recently, that seemed to happen with The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and its two sequels: the "Millennium Trilogy".  So I gave GwtDT a read.  

    Honestly, I still don't know what the fuss is about.  It is a fairly decent mystery novel, but certainly nothing special.  Why did this book get such a passionate following?

    Sure you've got your punky, sexually charged protagonist, Lisbeth Salander - and I get that promiscuous female hackers are attractive - but what is there about the mystery that elevates it above any particular episode of Cold Case?  I don't read a lot of mysteries (or watch Cold Case), but I've got to figure the genre is littered with stories that are more gripping than this.

    Not much happens.  I kept waiting for there to be some excitement, something to justify the intense popularity this book seems to have found... but by the end when the pace finally does pick up it is over so quickly and results in so little drama, I found myself saying, "This is it?"

    The problem, for the most part, is how the book is written.  I remember being taught very early on to "show not tell" when writing fiction.  All due respect to the late Mr. Larsson, but he almost never does this.  This book feels like a report on what happened, rather than a story about it.  Confrontations that have been building are never dramatized with dialog, but rather described clinically.  "He make a joke and gave her a piece of his mind" rather than allowing us inside that moment by writing out the joke or the discussion.  Later chapters that describe moments of peril diffuse any tension by starting with the protagonists safely out of harms way, and then flashing back to danger.  What?  Why should I be on the edge of my seat when I know the result?

    I didn't think the book was terrible, just surprisingly mediocre.  I am baffled by the amount of attention is has received.  I started the second book, but just couldn't compel myself to continue.  Can anyone explain the draw?


    Meeting Bradbury...

    The legendary Mr. Ray Bradbury, cinema's James Cromwell, television's Seamus Dever, and... me!

    In celebration of his birthday, I recently had the opportunity to act in a never-before-staged one act play written by Mr. Bradbury.  I was thrilled to be able to work with such wonderful talent and meet a true science-fiction legend.  Here we are carousing like old school chums: