Thursday, February 28, 2013

March is Ask James Anything Month at Slurpees and Murder

That's right, you read correctly -- it's audience participation time! Something a little more straightforward and a lot more frequent than that other time, and hopefully no less enthralling.

Those of you who follow me on Twitter know that I've had an unmitigatedly disastrous back half of February, and I spent a weekend taking it not particularly well, so my apologies to all of you that had to put up with Mopey McMoperson for an uncharacteristically mopey two or three days.

In celebration, then, of it not being February any more -- because, man, screw February -- let's do a little something special for the month of March.

I've had the idea to do this in the back of my mind for a while now, partially because it seems reasonable that audience members would have unanswered questions over the seven (egads) calendar years of the site, but more particularly because -- in those rare and peculiar moments when people recognize me from the internet, or half recognize me, which always ends up being really confusing for everyone involved -- I get statements from time to time along the lines of "I know this sounds weird, but I feel like I know you from reading you. Not well, but, like, kind of." So all this month and all month long, in the interest of getting to know me better -- go ahead and Ask Me Anything!

(I know that the phrase is more commonly associated with Reddit nowadays, but I'm thinking of it more in the Tumblr sense. Not that I've ever really spent any particular amount of time on either site, but y'know. Humour me here.)

I'm pretty sure that this should work out well for everyone involved; I get an excuse to work on shorter bursts of content and less aloof delivery, the questioning party in each instance gets resolution of an old plot thread or payoff on a concept I'd left half-covered somewhere along the way, and everyone else viewing the page gets to drop by without my demanding that they read two- to four-thousand words every single gosh-dang post.

So fire away! I'm throwing open the gates, so Help a Brother Out; from the complicated ("If you had the ability to transfer one file or responsibility from one level of government to another, what would it be, and why?") to the simple ("wats ur favorite soda-pop"), leave your top-of-mind questions in the comments section below and I'll do my best to tackle each and every one. Though I may, in honesty, see fit to give greater priority to ones with actual names attached. Y'know how it is.

But enough talk! Ask James Anything!

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Weekend(-ish) in Review: Here are a Bunch of Jets Valentines, a Handful of Civic Valentines, and Some Pictures of Omand's Creek on Louis Riel Day (Warning: Very Image-Heavy)

Well, hello there, stranger. Happy Louis Riel Day! And Happy Valentine's Day, too, if you were into that sort of thing.

As it just so happens, since we're on the subject of recent seasonal observances, I chipped in two or three jokes for the Sun's very special Winnipeg Jets Valentines gallery. (And knowing my luck, chances are that mine are all the ones you didn't like.) They're all quite worth your eyeballin', but here are some of the ones I really liked:

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Help a Brother Out!: Longform Web Layout-slash-Design Recommendations (Plus, Here is a Four-Foot-Tall Brian Mulroney Butler Wooden Standee)

First things first: now through the end of the week, Winnipeg Art Gallery memberships are 58% off for individuals and 50% off for families on Groupon. Culture at a discount!

(Having just typed that string of words, "Culture at a Discount" seems like it'd be the headline of a national feature on our arts scene. Y'know those weird bi- or tri-annual Globe & Mail articles about how suddenly and surprisingly legitimate Winnipeg is? Well, one of those.)

Hopefully you will find that above link to be useful, and also hopefully -- the two are not connected, mind, please don't feel obligated -- you may be able to aid me with a recent concern of mine. Yes, it's time once again for a little segment that I like to call: Help a Brother Out!