Archive For 2009


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(But, then, I should really just shut my bloody trap. Shouldn’t I.)

Straight Up Survival : Seattle Street Life

Straight Up Survival : Seattle Street Life from Dustin Hansen on Vimeo.

[ click here to view full size in a new window ]

A short (30min) documentary-style film about life on the streets that I shot July 19 – 22 in Seattle Washington when I was there to attend Web Design World conference.

Rather than do touristy stuff, I thought I would just walk around, explore the city, and talk to people I encountered. I am very glad I did.

This was a spontaneous project, not pre-planned, and the video & audio quality reflect that. Having said that, I think this form (handheld pocket camera & one-take recording) fits the content. Using a lighting setup, boom mic, tripod, etc., — even if I had them — would not have been appropriate. (Have to admit a mic would have been helpful, though…)

End credits music by Firewater:

I realize watching a 33 minute video is a huge time commitment these days, but I hope people do take the time to check it out because I’m proud of it — think it’s one of the best things I’ve done.


(But, then, I should really just shut my bloody trap. Shouldn’t I.)

The moral of Chuck Palahniuk’s “RANT”

If you don’t want to die, all you have to do is deliberately contract rabies then deliberately crash your car so that you can go back in time and rape your 13-year-old mother so that you are your own father and/or kill your parents so that you were never born (??). Rinse, lather, repeat.

Honestly, I think the book is sheer genius but I couldn’t quite wrap my head around it. Have to give it another read, maybe…

(But, then, I should really just shut my bloody trap. Shouldn’t I.)

Gathering Storm

Gathering Storm from Dustin Hansen on Vimeo.

A short video I took of storm clouds moving in. [42sec]

Recorded with Flip MinoHD; sped up 1200% in iMovie 2009; music: “Midnight’s Hymn” by Virgin Black.

(But, then, I should really just shut my bloody trap. Shouldn’t I.)

Memories: listening to Red Foxx standup on 8-track while playing pool in Gramma’s basement

In a recent chat with my friend Brent — somehow got onto the topic of comedians, and how there are no good ones anymore — he mentioned Red Foxx…

Can’t hear that name without being reminded of hanging out with my cousins in my grandma’s basement, shooting pool and listening to a Red Foxx standup routine on an 8-track player that she had down there. My grandma & grandpa went to the auction in Minot every single weekend, and always came home with boxes and boxes of random junk. A lot of times grandma would just buy boxes for $1 without even knowing what was in them. Anyway, she had all sorts of 8-track tapes down there — Meatloaf, Kool N The Gang, and the Red Foxx are the ones I remember most.

“What’s the difference between a pickpocket and a peeping tom? A pickpocket snatches watches.”

“Sometimes, you get up in the morning… (long pause) …and that’s too much for ya.”

And thinking about grandma’s basement… They had a barroom with those swinging saloon doors — we loved those. An actual bar with bar stools, those neon beer & liquor signs, rows of bottles on glass shelves… Can’t forget this one large neon beer sign that looked like an ocean with little fish that moved from right to left, for some reason found it fascinating. We’d always hang out in there, and my cousins would always say they were going to drink some of the brandy but I don’t think they ever did. Thing I remember most about the bar, though, was the snake: they had a dead rattlesnake all curled up and preserved in a jar below the bar in one of the cupboards (I believe my uncle caught and killed it). Every time we were there we had to take it out and look at it.

I also remember that they hat a satellite dish — one of those 20-foot-tall installations in the back yard — and since we only had 4 channels, this was the coolest thing ever. But truthfully the only thing we ever seemed to find worth watching was “The Dark Crystal,” which seemed to be on every single time we were there — I’m pretty sure I saw that at least 7 times at their house…

Thinking about this now it makes me sad that they’re both dead, the house sitting empty and falling apart.

I’m also sad that my wife Kari never got to meet Grandma, and neither did Abbey (step-daughter, now 13) or Oskar (now 14 months). She was a wacky and eccentric lady.

(But, then, I should really just shut my bloody trap. Shouldn’t I.)

Giant bugs on the road?…

In my car I just switched stations and heard:

“to exterminate all those bugs and pests. That’s your latest traffic.”

I’m always amused at how they include ads as though it was part of the news story — without missing a beat or changing tone in any way. Is this supposed to trick the listener’s brain into thinking the ad is true and credible or something? Cause all it does is make it harder to take the news seriously…

Dream: Pin Darts War

Middle of the night. Going out of my mind trying not to drink. In an inner city somewhere, in a very small squalid apartment, living with Kari but no kids. I’m in college and have recently realized how much shit I have not done/handed in, and how many classes I have skipped. Wandering around town, going to bars but not drinking.

These two dark-skinned blokes are playing a weird game where they throw little needle-like darts at each other. The pins are several inches long but extremely thin, and they stick into the skin. I get in on the game, and I am not used to this so it is quite excruciating — I have hundreds of these long pins stuck into my hands, arms, face, neck, chest… But for some reason it is a release and I enjoy it. Derek Smith is there — “hey, I didn’t know you played!” — and he’s telling the other blokes about how some friends of his take it very seriously, and instead of straight pins they use darts with long curled pins that burrow down beneath the skin when they hit you and are really hard to get out again; he shows us a picture of a guy’s arm, you can see the metal spiral pushing up beneath the skin.

At some point I realize the other “team” is not throwing darts but wielding chain saws, machetes, and the like. I can’t figure out how this can be part of the game…

When I decide to go home I have to pull them out and give them back to the guy — it’s his special kit and he keeps them in a special leather bag.

When I get home I realize I’ve still got tons of them stuck in my skin. Kari is worried about me, because she thinks I did it to myself. I try to explain to her…

At some point I am going on a violent rampage, completely enraged and out of control. I can’t remember if I get drunk or not…

(But, then, I should really just shut my bloody trap. Shouldn’t I.)

Bored cops. Nice.

I slowed down while passing because it looked like there must be a huge accident.

Turns out, just bored cops.

You can’t quite see all of them in the picture, but there are 7 cars pulled over at one time (actually 6 cars and 1 scooter). While I was sitting there, 3 more were pulled over before my eyes.

Here’s the scenario: an unmarked police car (black Dodge Charger) is parked along a side road at the bottom of a hill (where of course gravity naturally makes you go slightly over the speed you were going unless you slam on the brakes [which can be dangerous because the person behind you is likely to rearend you]) with a radar gun. He radios ahead to his group of 4 or 5 squad cars on another side road further up and says “pull this car over.” When you get there, one of the 6 or more cops standing around points at you to pull off the road.

I was going the same speed as the two cars ahead of me, and the car behind me. Why I got the luck of the draw I don’t know… (Must be cause I’m white.)

When the cop finally came back with my license he asks “What are you taking pictures of?” I just sort of gesture and say “all this” — but in my head I’m like “Seriously? Look around you, pal — this is insanity — I’ve never seen anything like this in my life. Who authorized this bullshit?” (The guy on the scooter was actually taking pictures with his phone as well.)

To top things off, I wasn’t wearing my seat belt. Yeah, this is going to cost me some rubles…

Since apparently cops have nothing better to do than this, if I hear one more person say “there aren’t enough cops on the street” I’m gonna punch them in the ear.

(But, then, I should really just shut my bloody trap. Shouldn’t I.)

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