Another Death Panel

image courtesy of

image courtesy of

Dying as some decent music plays.

Many a round table discussion was had with my friends, colleagues, classmates, and roommates when I was in college, topics running the gauntlet from gender issues to geo-political “isms,” drug use to art, collective hopes and dreams to pop culture analysis.  Opinions varied.  Tempers sometimes flared and cooled.  And all the while through a lovely and gentle haze of suds and smoke, ideas flourished.

Joup Interview: Patrick Tape Fleming of ‘Gloom Balloon’.

My sneeze echoed off the funeral home, reminding me I was still alive on the night Lou Reed died. Recently I’ve been given to checking out the heavens. Kicking the tyres on the sky. Sometimes when I see that white-hot sun burning through fast moving cloud in a cold sky, I wonder what would happen if my life’s console was compromised, deleting all you NPCs and leaving just me.

Me and that accusative-looking cyclopic sun.

Summer Reading Book #2: Queen of Water


Queen of Water co-author Maria Virginia Farinango (images courtesy of

Queen of Water co-author Maria Virginia Farinango (images courtesy of

Students often ask me if the story they are reading is real. The humorous part of this is, it doesn’t matter how unrealistic the book is, they will still ask. To them, the lines are so blurred between fact and fiction that it is difficult for them to distinguish between the two. In my second summer reading book, Queen of Water, those lines are blurred so well that even I am curious as to what was real and what was fiction. This novel is based on a true story of an Ecuadorian indegena young woman, the co-author Maria Virginia Farinango, who was handed over to a mestizo family as an indentured servant at the age of seven.

Does the World Want Superman?

image courtesy of

image courtesy of

“In the decade of the 1930s, even the great city of Metropolis was not spared the ravages of the worldwide depression. In times of fear and confusion, the job of informing the public was the responsibility of The Daily Planet, a great metropolitan newspaper whose reputation for clarity and truth had become the symbol for hope in the city of Metropolis…”

Narration of off-screen ‘Boy’, Prologue to ‘Superman: The Movie’ 1978


Average Joe Photography #1: Buddhist Monks in Procession: Tachileik, Myanmar

A Buddhist Monk in serach of an exiliir in Tachileik, Myanmar (Joe Grez / Joup)

A Buddhist Monk in serach of an exiliir in Tachileik, Myanmar (Joe Grez / Joup)

The Premier installment of Joup’s Average Joe Photography. My co-publisher Shawn Baker came up with another great idea (he’s full of’em…really). It started with him asking how I got a certain shots in the Muay Thai pieces I wrote a few months back (Main Gallery). I explained that Muay Thai leads itself to Black and White Photography but how the scenario was tricky to shoot because you have people moving at a fast pace in an outdoor low light situation. And one can’t vary well set up a tripod next to the ring! So I talked with him a bit about using higher ISO with as quick of a shutter speed as I could. And also what I did in post production to present the images in the most true to form as possible.

Why Coachella 2013 and YouTube got it Right

Coachella and YouTube team up to bring music to the world. (Courtesy of Coachella Music + Arts Festival)

Coachella and YouTube team up to bring music to the world. (Courtesy of Coachella Music + Arts Festival)

“Wow, just Wow.” I keep telling myself as I watch the French band Phoenix performing live at the Coachella Music Festival on a channel created specific to stream the entire weekend. As a matter of fact, Coachella worked with YouTube creating THREE channels! Streaming live performance of nearly 75 artist through 3 days. Such acts include the aforementioned Phoenix, Blur, Teagan and Sara, Ginderman, Spiritulaized, Vampire Weekend, Franz Ferdinand, Red Hot Chilli Peppers and the first performance in some years of The Postal Service.

Relationships Matter – Love and In Love

Sometime Love is holding hands.

Sometimes a simple reminder to ourselves can help appreciate our relationships. (Image:

“What is the difference between ‘love’ and ‘in love’?” is a frequently asked question. The answer is different for each individual and based on:

  • Their emotional, mental and physical makeup
  • Their upbringing and background
  • Their current beliefs and values

My current answer is that being ‘in love’ is all about intensity; the highs are dizzying, the lows debilitating. Being ‘in love’ may be non-sexual or sexual. ‘Love’ is much more stable and comfortable; it generates a secure, constant, warm, fuzzy feeling. It is possible to ‘love’ without being ‘in love’ and vice versa.

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