Getting ready for Show time

Blood On The Walls is the aptly named title of my upcoming solo art show at 1900 Park - Creative Space and Gallery.

A portion of the invite created for my upcoming solo art show.

I’m glad there’s still a fair amount of time until my first solo art show since 1994. I’m going to need it.

The Opening Reception will be on Friday night, March 3 – still more than 40 days away yet it seems much closer than that to me. Once I had heard that 1900 Park – Creative Space and Gallery was willing to give me a solo show, it sent my planning wheels into motion.

That was back in early November which now seems like a long, long time ago. I knew that I needed to wait until after the new year came and went before pushing out in too big a way. But now that January is in its final week, it’s time to start ramping up the planning.

Invites were created and a good deal of them have been sent out – but not all of them as my list continues to evolve. Since Tom Jr. is going to be the featured musical entertainment the night of the opening reception, we were initially calling the evening, “The Tom Blood Experience”.

Though I liked the title, it didn’t quite seem right to me. Plus, the show will be up throughout most of the month of March and just calling my artwork ‘The Tom Blood Experience’ wasn’t making sense to me. When you have a last name like mine, you might as well capitalize on it – thus ‘Blood on the Walls’ seemed to be an interesting and memorable name for a collection of my artwork that would be hanging on the walls.

So I went with it.

I intend to try and showcase some of the many objects that my art can appear on as well – pillows, iPhone cases, greeting cards, tote bags – the bright, colorful and often quite weird subject matter of what I paint just might be a good conversation starter. So I’ve ordered a number of items that we’ll have on display the evening of the event.

Here's a little card that a husband or boyfriend can send to their significant other as a means of apologizing. I wrote some copy for the insides that turns this into a pretty cool card and will have it on display at the show.

Here’s a little card that a husband or boyfriend can send to their significant other as a means of apologizing. I wrote some copy for the insides that turns this into a pretty cool card and will have it on display at the show.

Something's Wrong with America throw pillow. No, I won't have this one at the show, but there will be another one that looks pretty cool.

Something’s Wrong with America throw pillow. No, I won’t have this one at the show, but there will be another one that looks pretty cool.

So far, the biggest challenge is figuring out just how many people are going to show up. That’s always your biggest fear – “What if we have the show and nobody comes?”

I don’t think that’s going to happen. Rather, it’s trying to figure out, “What if we have the show and everybody comes?” 1900 Park isn’t a huge facility. Still, I think they can handle a crowd and I’m sure they’ve had big turnouts before.

So we’re trying to figure out a food and drink allotment and be ready for anything.

Choosing which particular pieces I’m putting into the show remains a work in progress as well. There will be more than 30 paintings on display. Just how many, I’m still not quite sure. But each one will have a title, a price tag and a brief explanation as to what in the world I was thinking when I created it.

I'll try and give some kind of explanation as to the meaning of this painting at my upcoming show at 1900 Park on March 3rd.

I’ll provide some kind of explanation as to the meaning of this painting at my upcoming show at 1900 Park on March 3rd.

There’s a lot more that’s going to go into this show. Tom Jr. has to work out his playlist. We’re ordering specially made t-shirts for the event (that will also be available for online purchase), There might be hand-outs and who knows what else.

So as of now, time is on my side. I’m excited about the opportunity. And even though February only has 28 days, it’s going to be a long, long month.

2016 and beyond for BloodLines Creative and BloodLines Art

So on this last day of 2016, I take a few moments to look back on the year and try to project what lies ahead for 2017.

Business wise, it was a good year. Not a great year. But a good year. I worked with a variety of new clients, lost an established one and still maintain ties with a long-time relationship which is very rewarding.

Though not a paying ciient, the invite that I created for our SLUH 40th Year Reunion was great fun and so was the Reunion weekend.

Though not a paying ciient, the invite that I created for our SLUH 40th Year Reunion was great fun and so was the Reunion weekend.

I created a number of videos, helped re-vamp one client’s website and we’ll soon be launching a new branding effort for another one. I began blogging for one client, worked on some PPC ads and I’m in the midst of working on a new TV and radio campaign as well. (Sorry for not naming client names – I only do that when I have permission and for this particular piece, I’m not even bothering to ask.)

On the art side of things, I was happy with the progress I’ve made as a painter. I created 11 paintings in 2016 – I don’t exactly churn them out, but I do stay at it and I continue to try and improve my brushwork, executing a variety of ideas that come from all places but always seem to circle back to Magritte in one way or another.

This painting was probably my favorite one that I created in 2016. It will be one of more than 30 on display at a solo show coming up in March.

This painting was probably my favorite one that I created in 2016. It will be one of more than 30 on display at a solo show coming up in March.

I began to more actively market my art this year as well. I now have two websites devoted to my art: http://bloodlinesart.com and http://tom-blood.pixels.com

The first site looks nice but has basically been useless due to a lack of promotion on my part. The second site enables you to take your art and have it show up in the form of pillows, tote bags, iPhone covers, coffee mugs, greeting cards and a variety of ways to order prints. That site continues to draw about 25-50 visitors a day and I’m approaching more than 8000 views since I started it back in July. The sales effort though has been somewhat disappointing – I’ve made enough to pay for the site but that’s about it.

Nuts and Bolts - one of my 'stick' paintings looks really cool in the form of a pillow and I've sold a few of them in 2016.

Nuts and Bolts – one of my ‘stick’ paintings looks really cool in the form of a pillow and I’ve sold a few of them in 2016.

There are more than a million works of art on the website. So I’m not overly surprised that my work isn’t selling like gangbusters. I don’t do art for a living. I do it for fun. I do it because I can. And I will continue to try and get better with each painting.

Prospects for 2017 look solid for both BloodLines Creative and BloodLines Art. Currently, I have a number of projects already in the books, some that will be on-going thru the Spring. I’m hoping to have my website fully optimized by the end of January and then I’ll begin more aggressive new business pursuits.

I hope to ramp up my blogging efforts in 2017 and have them be more focused on advertising and art. I dropped off the blogosphere and I’ve lost a lot of regular readers. Hopefully, I can earn them back.

I’m going to be ramping up for my first solo art show since 1994 over the next two months. It’s going to be at 1900 Park – Creative Space and Gallery. It’s both an art gallery and a music venue which will be awesome as I’ll have more than 30 works on display throughout the month of March. Opening night is going to be on Friday, March 3 and feature the music of Tom Blood, Jr.

More on that will be coming.

1900 Park will be the site of my first solo art show since 1994. Opening night will be on Friday, March 3rd.

1900 Park will be the site of my first solo art show since 1994. Opening night will be on Friday, March 3rd.

I have learned in this business that you never know what’s around the corner. You do your best, try your hardest, be honest with the people you work with and have fun in the process and generally, good things will happen. I have been blessed to work with so many gifted individuals through the years. I continue to learn and explore new ways to market – but bottom line, whether you’re doing a website or online ads or developing a trade show booth, you still need big ideas to stand out, get noticed and acted upon.

I’ve still got a lot of those.

Happy New Year and I’ll see you on the other side of 2017.

 

Close Encounters of the Pokemon Kind

Pokemon Go gets people out and about - but only paying attention to their phone.

Pokemon Go gets people out and about – but only paying attention to their phone.

 

The workout facility where I usually get my calorie burns is closed for a few days this week. So I set out for a little 5-mile walk in nearby Des Peres Park, only to be engulfed by a multitude of Pokemon GO players trying to find whatever Pokemon character that had been geo-located into the park that day.

It was a very bizarre experience.

I’ve heard about the popularity of Pokemon GO but I never really experienced it before yesterday. I went to http://www.pokemongo.com to get a little overview and I watched the video on their home page. It’s actually a pretty cool idea – using the interactivity of your phone as a geo-tracking gaming device to find Pokemon characters not just in your area, but all over the world.

Magical.

The reality was a bit different.

As I tried to stroll through the park, there were literally hundreds of people – mostly teens in clusters of three or four walking all around, all staring at their phones as they moved about.

Upon arrival, I immediately knew that Pokemon GO had lured them to the park. It’s what you call a Poke Stop. That’s not a bad thing. But most of them had their heads down as they were walking. You had to avoid them – they were oblivious to your presence as they searched the park for Pokemon characters in their habitat.

I saw a few people on bikes, riding and looking at their phones at the same time – a certain recipe for disaster. I had to step out of their way as they went by. There were a few others on skateboards, heads down, searching their maps, looking for where they might be able to throw a Poke Ball and up their level.

It wasn’t all teens, either, who were transfixed by their phones. Lots of adults were in on the hunt as well. I saw a mom, pushing a stroller with two babies in it. Her concentration was entirely focused on the phone.

You can’t really complain about a game that gets you out and about, off of the couch and out of the house. It also gets you to explore and maybe go places you haven’t gone before.

It’s just when you have hundreds of people doing the exact same thing and their entire focus is the phone, it makes you wonder.

Mark Twain had a quote, “Golf is a good walk spoiled.”

Put Pokemon GO in place of golf and that pretty much sums up my feelings.

How about you?

Extending the BloodLines brand

Besides being an owner of my own advertising/marketing agency, I have two main hobbies: golf and painting.

I love doing both though it seems that this year, my golf skills are in the deteriorating mode.

Painting on the other hand, is getting slightly better since I picked it up again a little under two years ago. Since that time, I’ve done 18 different paintings.

And sold one.

That brings the total number of canvases in the Blood household to somewhere around 60-70 paintings. Long ago, when I had several gallery showings I sold about 12 paintings overall. I have never painted to earn a profit. I paint because I can and something tells me it’s a talent (miniscule though it is) that I shouldn’t let go to waste.

At the same time, all these paintings sitting around in our house, many consigned to the storage area of our basement where they sit around collecting dust really aren’t doing anyone any good at all.

So recently, I’ve been trying to up the ante to put a little more effort into selling some of my works. I joined ArtLoupe, which has been very good to me, showcasing a number of my paintings via their tweets. ArtLoupe is an app that’s a free download for your phone https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/artloupe-buy-and-sell-fine-art/id1027498940?mt=8 and it features new artwork daily. I have quite a few paintings on display but I’m not quite sure how to find me. Maybe you can figure it out.

Another effort that I’m just now beginning to have some fun with is my new Fine Art website: http://bloodlinesart.com/

It made sense to use BloodLinesArt as the name of the website. Eventually, it will link back to BloodLinesCreative.com and even though the two are separate, they’re still related.

I really like this new site, especially when viewed from my mac. If you take a visit and click on ‘Works’ you can see a lot of my paintings. Click on View all and the entire roster loads on the page. Then you can click on any one of them and they come up on screen nice and big. I really like my “Nuts and Bolts” image on the site – the photography shows up amazingly well and you can see what a strange piece of art this really is, featuring hand painted nuts and bolts embedded into a sea of blue.

All but two of the pieces are listed as being for sale.

To date, no inquiries though I plan on adding an e-commerce element to the site later on and I’ve also been contemplating turning some of my paintings into t-shirts and other assorted wearables or offering posters of them as well.

All in an effort of doing a little house cleaning.

In the near future, I also plan on contacting a number of local galleries and seeing if I can’t convince someone to offer me a show once again. The shows I had back in the early 90s all made money for the gallery owner and for me and I think the same would occur again if given the chance.

Art is meant to be seen and enjoyed and from what I’ve been told, people really enjoy my art once they see it.

We just don’t get a lot of traffic in our basement.

Snotes on the rise

It’s been a while since I’ve written about Snotes – not because nothing has been happening but rather, I’ve been too busy working on the account to have the time to blog about it.

Snotes stands for Secret Notes. It’s a form of anamorphic messaging that has been around since the days of da Vinci but thanks to a patented technology, allows a user to create a Snote by typing in their message on the Snotes generator that lives on snotes.com and in under a second, your message is magically created – able to be sent via email or posted on Facebook or texted to your friends.

This is an actual Snotes LoveKnots necklace featuring Chris' initials and mine intertwined together.

This is an actual Snotes LoveKnots necklace featuring Chris’ initials and mine, intertwined together.

The fun thing about Snotes is how many potential uses they have. One such use is shown in the necklace you see above. We call them Snotes LoveKnots and we’re just now beginning to take orders for them. What you see in the photo are four sets of initials – CMB, THB, CMB, THB that are intertwined together and put into a sterling silver necklace. It can also be done in gold and there are a variety of ways we’re working on to showcase the letters – raised, with colored backgrounds and with different borders.

A lot went into turning this concept into reality. We had to develop a way for the laser cutters to read the pattern that is created when four sets of letters are intertwined with each other. It took a lot of experimenting and a lot of back and forth but it’s finally been figured out and an initial batch of necklaces have been delivered to a number of people who are now getting asked, “That’s a cool looking necklace. What is it?”

It’s exciting for the wearers of the necklace to explain that it’s their initials and their husbands initials. Or maybe the initials of their grandkids.

Monogrammed jewelry is a big business in the U.S. – and this is a whole new way to do monogrammed jewelry.

We’re not just talking necklaces, either.

Snotes LoveKnots can go on bracelets, ear rings, key chains, belt buckles. And that’s just for starters.

Imagine a bride and groom using a Snotes LoveKnot on their wedding invitation. And then having it on the napkins, glasses and even the cake at the reception, followed up by Thank You cards and personalized gifts for the bridesmaids and groomsmen with their names and the date of the wedding.

If you’re interested in an even wider range of how Snotes might be used, visit http://snotes.com/licensing-opportunities/ and explore our three key categories: Business, Consumer Products and Education.

We are truly excited about the potential for Snotes. Teachers have discovered the fun of using them in the classroom for games and quizzes and are making plans on incorporating them into next year’s lesson plans.

Our website visitation has been exponentially growing.

In about three weeks, we’ll be attending the Licensing Expo in Las Vegas. We have a very cool looking booth that will showcase our full range of Licensing Opportunities. We also have prearranged meetings with some major companies that have shown interest in partnering together that could potentially accelerate the growth of Snotes in ways that might be hard to fathom.

Snotes are on the rise. It’s going to be fun to see how this story continues to unfold.

 

 

A return to the MySLArt.org 33 Show

Last March I decided to begin showing some of my art again and was happy to be chosen for the MySLArt.org 33 Show.

Every month, 33 artists get to display three of their works in the Old Orchard Gallery. There’s an opening night reception and the show stays up for a few weeks and it’s always a very eclectic mix of art. I was thrilled and honored at the last show when I received both the People’s Choice Award and the Juror’s Award – one of the few times that has happened at their shows.

So I’m entering again. Two relatively newer works and one old favorite. All three are quite a departure from my surrealist pursuits and after hanging the pieces tonight, it was fun to hear some of the comments on all three.

My tribute to Jackson Pollock done my own way.

My tribute to Jackson Pollock done my own way.

The featured image in this post is called “Nuts and Bolts”. I’m not really sure this is a painting. But it’s definitely art. When our family was in London, the boys and I made a visit to The Tate Modern Gallery. There you’ll find all sorts of modern art – some pieces absolutely amazing, others leave you scratching your head. I decided then and there that I was going to explore some utterly simplistic concepts and see what happened.

One of my initial thoughts was to see if I could come up with an extension of the first painting I ever sold back in 1984 at my first gallery showing. I was so thrilled to have a show and even more amazed when the gallery owner, who took a flying leap of faith on my unproven works, came up to me and said, “Well, you got your first sale!”

“Really?” I asked. “What was it?”

The gallery owner replied, “Sealed for Your Protection” – and I was amazed. That painting came about because I had a small canvas sitting around and I didn’t know what to do with it. I decided on a whim to smother it in every paint color I had, globbing it on with a palette knife, making a colorful mess of the canvas. But that seemed kind of dumb. Looking around my sloppy painting area, I noticed that I had all these little tabs from the tops of airbrush paint bottles. I picked one up and looked at it. It read, “Sealed for your protection”.

Perfect. I stuck about 60 of them into the still wet globs of paint and they literally dried around the tabs. The tabs truly were “Sealed for your protection”.

I took that basic premise and started anew and decided to do word combos. The first one that popped into my head was nuts and bolts. I had an old can full of nuts and bolts, passed on to me from my dad and I decided they needed to be painted. So over the course of three evenings, I hand painted about 40 nuts and bolts, questioning my sanity along the way. But when they were all done and I laid them out on the blank canvas I couldn’t wait to glob on the paint with my trusty palette knife.

I love the end result.

So I continued on with “Nickels and Dimes”. This time I tried spray painting the nickels and dimes but the paint didn’t adhere so I went back to hand painting each nickel and dime. I like it but not as much as “Nuts and Bolts”. Next on the agenda was “Salt and Pepper”. I searched online for salt and pepper packets but couldn’t find what I wanted so the idea was stuck in neutral. I told Tom Jr. about my plight and he surprised me one day after a visit to a local diner with about 60 packets of salt and pepper.

That one is also on display at the show and it drew rave reviews tonight. For awhile, I went back to exploring more surrealistic concepts but recently a whole flurry of word combos popped into my head, demanding to be done. I just finished my most recent one called “War and Peace”.

My latest 'stick' painting is also my new favorite.

My latest ‘stick’ painting is also my new favorite.

 

I love this piece of art. Again, whether or not it’s a painting is debatable. But it’s definitely art.

I invite you to stop by next Friday night, April 29th from 6-10 pm at the Old Orchard Gallery in Webster Groves to see all the art on display at the MySLArt.org 33 April show. Every one I’ve been to so far has been a good time. Please. Do drop in. And ask me to tell you the story behind “Purple Splatter”.

 

A sad farewell to Annie, the dog

The sweetest dog I've ever known is no longer with us.

Annie, the sweetest dog I’ve ever known.

 

She was the cutest dog in the entire world and she lived in our house.

Annie the dog died on Wednesday morning, March 23rd. We think she was somewhere between 12 and 13 years old, almost 11 of them spent with us.

Annie was a rescue dog and we were the ones who came to her rescue, getting her out of a miserable existence and bringing her into our home.

In return, she gave us unconditional love. Every single day.

Annie was a rat terrier. Those two words certainly don’t connote cuteness. But this dog was cute – actually, beyond cute. When we first got her, she was white with brown spots. Those spots faded over the years but even in her old age, she still had the personality of a puppy. How fitting that our pupper chose to go on National Puppy Day.

Annie had many names. When Chris, her sister, Catherine and Tom Jr. first brought her home, her official name was AnnaBelle. But that was quickly changed to Annie.

She went on to be called DiDi, Donna, Ern, Sockhead, PupperButt, Annie Banannie, The Baby, Tippy and PupPup, just to name a few. She answered to them all, and each one has its own story attached to it.

God, how we loved that dog. Whenever we got home from wherever we’d been, we’d all rush to greet her. “She’s my best friend,” Catherine would say. “She’s my best friend, too,” I’d chime in. She was our whole family’s best friend.

I work from home and Annie was always at my feet when I worked. Last night, as I reached down to instinctively pet her came the crushing reality that she’s not there anymore. I was wearing black sweatpants that are still covered with short Annie hairs. So she hasn’t entirely left me. She never will.

Annie was a loyal dog, an unbelievably friendly, happy dog. She was a lap dog and most of the time, it was my lap that had the honor of her presence.

She had her moments – Annie was terrified of thunder – something we believe tied back to her time in the puppy mill where she was probably left outside in the rain. She would tremble and shake at the sound of thunder and her little heart would beat way too fast.

As she got older, we feared that her rapidly beating heart would give out on her and about a year or so ago, a visit to the vet revealed that she had a heart murmur.

So we got her on some heart medicine and hoped for the best but we all knew her remaining time with us was probably not going to be measured in years.

The boys are in college now. Catherine will soon be graduating high school and we hoped that Annie would at least make it to the fall so that if she did go, it would be while Catherine was away.

That’s kind of what happened – the timing just wasn’t what we anticipated.

Last Thursday morning, Catherine took off for a Spring Break vacation with her friends. Chris and I used that empty nest time to take off ourselves and we were on an unbelievable golf trip. We put Annie in the good care of Chris’ mom and dad who had watched Annie before. Their home was a home away from home for Annie. Driving her to their house last Wednesday night, Annie did her usual of sitting on my lap, looking out the window as the world passed by.

All was well and when I left, I bent down and said goodbye to Annie, not knowing it would be the last time I ever saw her.

On Wednesday morning, Chris got a tearful long-distance call from her mom and dad. They woke up to let Annie out. But that would no longer be necessary.

The pup-pup had died. Her heart simply gave out.

There were no dramatics. No mess. Just a little white dog, lying on the floor – her work was done.

Annie won the hearts of everyone who ever met her. She didn’t have a mean bone in her body. So the dog that had never done anything wrong passed away while we were all away.

Now there will be no more volleyballs to dribble around our back yard. No more squirrels, birds or rabbits to chase. No more tug of wars with her toys that she loved to fetch, return and then refuse to let go of in her awesome displays of toughness.

Our house feels so empty now.

She was 16 pounds of love, goodness and happiness.

As we were flying back yesterday to St. Louis, I knew we were returning to life without Annie. I cried when we took off. I cried when we touched down. I cried because of all the tears that I knew Catherine would be shedding as well. Our best friend is gone.

I mourn the loss of that little dog. But I am so grateful that I got to be a part of her life.

Annie changed our lives – 1000% for the better.

Rest in peace, little pup-pup. Rest in peace.

Writer or artist?

During the day, there’s no doubt what my profession is – I’m a writer and a creative strategist, helping companies with their marketing communications challenges.

I don’t just enjoy what I do, I love what I do.  I get as energized now about coming up with strong concepts as the day I first entered the business which, when you think about it, was truly from another era – when copywriters created their copy on manual typewriters. No, it wasn’t the Golden Age of Advertising – that was supposed to have been in the ’60s. But it was long before the internet came along, before cell phones and fax machines and the whole concept of a blog would have sounded like some sort of science fiction term.

Creative director and writer by day. But when evening rolls around, I find it more entertaining to pick up a paint brush and see if I can get better at whatever painting I happen to have in the works. So, “Writer or artist?”

Recently, the brush is winning out over the keyboard keys.

So the blog is losing momentum, losing readers and I am losing interest – to a degree.

I don’t believe I’ve gotten any business as a direct result of the content I push out. I know I’m not following all the rules of blogdom and that if I really wanted to become a Subject Matter Expert in the wonderful world of advertising and marketing communications, I’d have to always be on point and actually push out some knowledge that could be of use to people.

There are plenty of people that do that already.

So instead, I write about what interests me – and apparently, I’ve written about enough things that interests others from time to time. Since I began this blog, I’ve gotten more than 50,000 views – which initially sounds impressive. But in reality, that’s not even equal to the attendance of a bad Rams home game (not that I can write about them anymore). And when you spread those 50,000 views out over a 5-year period, the numbers begin to get smaller and smaller.

Meanwhile, my painting prowess seems to be picking up a bit more. I had a 16-year hiatus from the canvas but now, I love to have a painting in the works.

I was proud to have my work on display at the MySLArt.org first ever “Best of Showcase”. There were some very cool paintings on display and I think my work stood on its own.

Recently, I began sharing some of my paintings on a new app called ArtLoupe, put out by Art St. Louis and I was flattered yesterday to receive a message that I’ve been chosen as one of 12 artists that they will be promoting through the organization’s various social media accounts which includes over 6,000 followers. My hope for 2016 is to land a gallery show of my own and I’m going to be pursuing that over the coming months.

 

 It’s cool when other people post your work. It’s fun when other people read your work.
Bottom line, I’m going to try and do both. But right now, there’s a canvas that is calling my name.

 

 

Flush the Rams and prepare for some Super Bowl commercials

The St. Louis media has hyped the loss of the Rams about as much as they can. Sure, we’re down an NFL team and about $16 million in fees on top of the yearly bill to pay for the soon to be nameless dome that will be home to more tractor pulls and monster truck races in the near future.

We loathe Stan. We will continue to loathe him for as long as he is around to be loathed.

But it’s also time to move on. Time to forget that there is no longer any conceivable way for St. Louis to end up in the Super Bowl. Those days are over. The way the Rams were run, they may never get back there again, anyway. So it’s time for the national hype to pick up on Peyton vs. Cam.

It’s going to be a good game – I think. It should also be a good year for a whole new crop of commercials coming from a whole new crop of agencies.

Yes, the big boys will be there – Pepsi and AB (I don’t like to acknowledge the InBev part) and I assume Coke as well. Wieden + Kennedy will be unveiling their first work for Bud Light introducing ‘The Bud Light Party’. Doritos is back with their Crash the Super Bowl commercials and the one they have out as a tease called “Ultrasound” is lots of fun.

New movies will be touted. The automakers will step up with a variety of approaches that are meant to be memorable and hopefully will have some semblance of day after recall.

But get ready for some new entries as well.

Have you ever heard of Bai? Sorry, but I hadn’t. And have you ever heard of Barton F. Graf? That’s the agency that produced Bai’s new Super Bowl commercial. I checked out their previous “None of this makes sense” campaign and it’s pretty darn good and has a really nice overall positioning. I don’t know what their spot is going to be about but I look forward to it.

SquareSpace will be using the comedic talents of Keegan-Michael Kelly and Jordan Peele. I’d say I’m looking forward to that but in reality, I never heard of either one of them before I typed their names – showing how hopelessly out of touch with who’s hot and who’s not.

Sorry.

So, am I going to actually share anything? Yes.

Pokemon, of all things, is celebrating their 20th anniversary and they’re still going strong. Some agency named Omelet out of Los Angeles (maybe they’ll get the Rams account) produced this awesome, fun to watch, and highly unexpected commercial.

Brilliantly shot. Great editing. Great music.

Enjoy.

That’s all I’ve got for now.

Powerball dreams and reality – circa 2016

My soon-to-be winning Powerball ticket.

My soon-to-be winning Powerball ticket.

Back in November of 2012, I posted the following on my blog. The odds have changed. There are more numbers now – which is how it has grown to more than a billion. We live in magical times, don’t we – where you can get millions of Americans to drop $10, $20 some people even way more than that – for a roughly 1 in 292.2 million to one chance that you’ll end up with the winning ticket.

There are Powerball dreams and there is reality. It’s 2016. If you change the amount of the drawing, your odds of winning and the topics of the day to missed field goals, El Chapo and David Bowie leaving ground control then everything else is still fairly pertinent.

November 27, 2012 … With no hurricanes bearing down on the east coast and lacking any current national disasters or tragedies, the media has momentarily shifted its attention to Wednesday’s upcoming $425 million Powerball drawing. http://www.powerball.com/pb_home.asp

All across the country, reporters are heading out to remote gas stations and convenience stores and interviewing people who are now waiting in line to purchase their Powerball tickets. Fresh after Black Friday, they’re now ready to plunk down a few dollars to give them something to dream about, at least until they wake up Thursday morning and find out they didn’t win.

After all, you can’t win if you don’t play, right?

Of course, odds are extremely good that you won’t win even if you do play. The official odds say the chances of winning are 1 in 175,223,510. I read elsewhere that it’s actually closer to 1 in 195,200,000 when you factor in that there isn’t always a winner – but hey, what’s an extra 20 million or so really matter?

Americans don’t really care that Powerball is one of the worst investments on the planet. Some people play every week, others wait for the jackpot to go over $100 million before purchasing a ticket. And when the numbers reach above $200 million, the media comes out to feed the frenzy.

With all that in mind, I thought I’d do my part by passing on a little knowledge I gleamed in my 15 minutes worth of research. All of the following info comes from an article I read based off of Gail Howard’s Lotto Strategy Book, Lottery Master Guide. http://www.smartluck.com/lottery-master-guide.htm

So before you go out and purchase your lottery ticket, you may want to keep the following thoughts in mind.

First off, if you’re doing Quick Picks, you have just as good a chance at winning as you do if you’re picking your own numbers. So purchase away. If you’re going to make your own picks, here’s Gail’s advice.

Choosing all odd numbers or all even numbers rarely happens – only about 4% of the time. Your best mix is 3 odds and 2 evens or 2 odds and 3 evens and then toss in the PowerBall number to balance them out.

All high numbers or all low numbers are also rarely drawn – again, only about 4% of the time. So don’t do that.

Avoid betting five consecutive numbers – it’s never happened. Four consecutive numbers has only happened a handful of times since the drawing began. Even three consecutive numbers is a rarity.

Avoid betting one lotto group – like picking all numbers in the teens. Probably not gonna happen.

Avoid pattern betting – like forming a cross with your picks or picking the four corners and the middle – even if they do win, hundreds, perhaps thousands of clever individuals will have had the same thought.

Avoid number multiples – 2, 4, 8, 16, 32 – again, you won’t be the only one with this brilliant idea so you’ll be sharing the riches.

Avoid all same last digits – 7, 17, 27, 37, 47 – same reason as above.

Some people like to pick birthdays and that’s fine but don’t forget to toss in one or two numbers above 31 just to make sure you’re covered.

Gail has one other guiding rule that makes sense to me: That which is most possible happens MOST OFTEN. That which is least possible happens LEAST OFTEN.

With that in mind, here’s a list of Powerball numbers that have won the most since last January:

guide.htmhttp://www.powerball.com/powerball/pb_frequency.asp

If you’re going to buy tickets in a group, ask everyone if they feel lucky. If the individual says, “I never win anything,” ask him or her to get out of the group – those negative vibes will drag you all down.

With all that in mind, I’m going to take a 45-minute trip to the outskirts of St. Louis, find some hole-in-the wall liquor store and purchase my winning ticket based on my carefully chosen criteria for number selection.

On second thought, I never win anything so I’m automatically disqualified.

Good luck and if you win based on any of the above advice, please pass on some of your winnings to me and I’ll make sure Gail gets a cut, too!