Friday, February 20, 2009

Where Aren't They Now: 72

Mars Franklin ate 49 eggs.

This is a "lightning round" guest post by Ben Compton. See Monday's post for a better explanation of my cop out!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Where Aren't They Now: 71

Jimmy Williams-Chandler, made his first longboard out of his father's coffinwood and pure, American gumption. Went to Hawaii to teach people how to surf. Found true love while pretending to paddle out to catch a wave for an octogenarian named Milfred.

This is a "lightning round" guest post by Ben Compton. See Monday's post for a better explanation of my cop out!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Where Aren't They Now: 70

Cindy Catchersmith wouldn't shut up about her fucking horse.

This is a "lightning round" guest post by Ben Compton. See Monday's post for a better explanation of my cop out!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Where Aren't They Now: 69

Charles Weatherheimer. Lost his right hand in a car accident when he was six. Got kicked out of cub scouts for telling the other kids that "god took my hand because of the terrible things I did amongst the Webelos."

This is a "lightning round" guest post by Ben Compton. See Monday's post for a better explanation of my cop out!

Monday, February 16, 2009

Introducing the "lightning round"

Late Sunday night I told my friend Ben that I was having a hard time getting moving with Where Aren't They Now. Quick as lightning, Ben wrote me up 4 short-and-sweet guest posts that you'll be seeing this week as I attempt to get back on the horse.

I'm calling it a "lightning round." You can call it a "cop out." Something > nothing, and Ben's posts > something. Math!

If you want to take a look/listen at other creative projects that are otherwise consuming me, make sure that you listen to Ben and my podcast, Arrive Having Eaten, as well as my own audio poetry project.

And if that ain't enough Erica for you, we might need to talk.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Where Aren't They Now: This Dude Looks Like Katie Rice

I think I'm going to take a break this week, for two reasons:

1. My feed counter keeps saying that 0 people are reading, which can't be far from the truth, and

2. This guy looks so much like cartoonist Katie Rice that it's freaking me quite-a-bit out.

I'm having a difficult time finding a head-on picture of Katie Rice, but try this one or this one or this one.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Where Aren't They Now: 67

Jan-- many years after this photo was taken-- became the first female rapper to sport an all-diamond grill.

It wasn't the type of grill which you would recognize today. Jan actually had bits of diamond implanted into each and every one of her teeth. The diamonds were not removable, of course, but did no lasting damage. If anything, they made food easier to chew.

And, of course, amassed some serious street cred.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Where Aren't They Now: 66

Rae was raised by birds.

Sure, it was unlikely that a group of birds would take in a human infant.

And sure, birds and humans share very little in common socially.

Sure, Rae had a difficult time transitioning into the human world once she came of age in her own little Jungle Book life.

Sure, the birds were a little hurt when she abandoned them and went on to become a local news anchor.

Stranger things have happened.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Where Aren't They Now: 65

Jed has an impressive collection of cardboard cutouts of himself.

He spent the entire school year pranking people when he was a sophomore in high school. By then he had 15 full-size cutouts of himself, in various outfits and positions. Jed loved to position them in realistic places, then watch from afar as people began to interact with him.

This is a photo of one of the cutouts, actually. We discovered that after the picture was already taken.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Where Aren't They Now: 64

Chip is antidextrous.

You may be more familiar with antidexterity's counterpart, ambidexterity. While people who exhibit ambidexterity can use both hands with equal agility, the antidextrous, such as Chip, are equally clumsy with both.

This is not a matter of simply being a klutz-- Chip's brain actually prefers not to use either hand. It takes great force of will for Chip to pick things up, point to things, catch a football. High fives are completely out of the question.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Where Aren't They Now: 63

Phyllis is afraid of her own shadow.

She's been diagnosed with acute agoraphobia, but it's much more severe than that. Even within her own house, she lives in fear.

She developed an intricate lighting system within her home which shines from as many points as possible at once, casting almost no shadow. Phyllis is working on a mobile unit that will allow her to take her lights with her, so that she might experience life again.
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Friday, January 30, 2009

Where Aren't They Now: 62

Herb can't hear rhyme.

He's failed every English class he can remember-- not because Herb isn't smart, because he certainly is. He can spell, form sentences, work an idiom or a simile. He simply cannot hear rhyme.

People have tried to explain it to him in all different ways. Herb cannot grasp the concept. He has read Green Eggs and Ham a hundred times if he's read it once, and does not understand the draw to that book. He can sense the rhythm behind it, but when people attempt to explain how words like "fox" and "box" relate, he's lost.

You'd be surprised how often it comes up.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Where Aren't They Now: 61

Chaz wrote and produced his high school's fall stage production this year: X-Men the Musical.

To tell you the truth, Chaz wasn't interested in theater at all before he had the idea to write X-Men. However, after seeing James Marsden's interpretation of Cyclops, Chaz knew his life had been leading up to this point.

Chaz studied like he'd never studied before, pouring over musicals to better understand the mechanics. He spent his entire junior year working and reworking his script, and the summer before his final year he put the finishing touches on it and sent his proposal to the school administration. They were ecstatic.

X-Men the Musical opens in March. In addition to his writer/producer credits, Chaz will also be headlining as Scott Summers/"Cyclops."

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Where Aren't They Now: 60

Annette is the daughter of a famous movie star.

You may know her mother from such diverse films as: Quantum of Solace, Pineapple Express, 30 Days of Night, and Memoirs of a Geisha. Who is this talented and diverse actress? You may know her best as the Columbia Pictures model, the iconic woman known best as the "Torch Lady".

Growing up, Annette was constantly reminded of her mother's incredible success with nearly every video rental or visit to the local multiplex. It drove her inner diva, desperately pushing her to depths of drama in an attempt to outshine her mother's work.

Currently, Annette is acting in an Off-Off-Broadway production of the hit musical Wicked. She plays Nessarose, the insecure Wicked Witch of the East.

This entry is a GUEST POST! Ryan Garwood is taking the reins today. If you'd like to write a guest post let me know and I'll send a picture your way!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Where Aren't They Now: 59

Maddy has never heard music loud enough for her.

She can remember being very young and hearing white trash drive through her neighborhood, horrible music pumping from their shitty cars. She was attracted to the bass she could feel through her windows and started listening to her own music louder than her parents would have liked.

Eventually her tolerance to the music levels rose and she began looking for alternate sources for loud music. She hooked up with the white trash in the loud cars, bought heavy amplifiers when she moved out of her parents' house, attended any concert she could get tickets for and sat as near to the speakers as possible.

Doctors, of course, warn her that she will definitely lose her hearing this way. They figure she must have selective hearing.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Where Aren't They Now: 58

Stan takes his piano seriously. In fact, he has the rare distinction of being first piano at his high school.

Most high school orchestras hold auditions for first violin, first clarinet, etc. However, Nebraska's James Coburn High School is one of few where so many young pianists studied, a first piano rank is necessary.

You can tell that Stan is true first piano material. Just look at that posture; Stan has spent so much time tickling the ivories that it has had a noticeable effect on his spine.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Where Aren't They Now: 57

Yolanda misses the simple days.

No, not the 1950s. No, not the Victorian era either. Yolanda has always wished she could have lived during the caveman epoch.

She feels that there's too much excessive "want" these days. She wants to be part of a society that is basically carnal, living by the gut and by the primal need. She thinks life should be survival of the fittest and that men should make the mating advances.

Well, plus she has a thing for loincloths.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Where Aren't They Now: 56

Theresa has Attention Surplus Disorder.

In case ASD isn't self-explanatory, it is characterized by paying too much attention to what is going on. A hyper-focus, if you will. Theresa is a passionate student with a complete inability to tune out.

It's a blessing and a curse. Often Theresa wishes she could simply daydream... drift off into an unfocused mental meandering. She would love to be able to look out the window without assessing the landscape, analyzing the birdsong, calculating the temperature.

In the words of a legendary comedian, "There's gotta be more to that story."

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Where Aren't They Now: 55

Chester re-invented golf.

Please don't misunderstand--he didn't make the game better, he actually invented it again. It was his primary obsession throughout late elementary school and early high school: painstakingly laying out the rules and regulations of his fantastic game. By the time he was finished, the game he had invented completely resembled what we know to be golf.

He was crushed, of course, on the day that his father took him to a local bar where the PGA tour was playing on the television.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Where Aren't They Now: 54

Farrah fell in love with her high school mascot.

It began when her friends dragged her to a basketball game: her school's Matadors versus the Summit High Eagle Eyes. Farrah had no interest in sports, but couldn't take her eyes off Toro as he clowned around the arena.

Later she began making excuses to attend the games. Her friends were often willing to go to basketball and football games with her, but showed much more resistance when Farrah began to travel with the team for a chance to rub elbows with Toro.

She felt a great kinship with the bull. He was strong and clever, like herself-- but outcast. A man apart. She understood how that felt.

Farrah never shared this secret with anyone, least of all the man in the bull costume.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Where Aren't They Now: 53

Jordan was the man behind his high school mascot, Toro.

He accepted the responsibility because he needed the hours-- any non-athlete at his high school had a certain amount of service hours to fulfill. Playing the bull racked up hours quickly, while giving Jordan the isolation he sought out.

The more he played Toro, the more he loved it. He felt as so many other have when putting on a mask: that he could be anyone, have another personality completely. Toro wasn't awkward and never stuttered. Toro was vivacious, flirtatious, outrageous. Jordan found he could be all these things while wearing the horns (and only while wearing the horns).

This escapism made the rest of Jordan's high school life difficult, of course. He was constantly moving toward the next game, the next school function. When Jordan began showing up at scrimmages and other minor events that weren't on Toro's official schedule, school administrators were forced to strip Jordan of his mascot privledges.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Where Aren't They Now: 52

Shannon was the first infant to take home an Oscar.

In a pivotal and suspenseful scene in the biopic Anne Frank, the title character must silence a small child while she and her family are hiding in their infamous attic. Critics touted the baby's breathtaking work in that crucial scene, and the rest is history.

Frankly, everyone that touched that movie took home an Oscar. Still, the superiority complex that Shannon grew up with is staggering.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Where Aren't They Now: 51

Davin has always wanted to be a Boy Scout.

He attended a full season of meetings when he was 12. However, during his first retreat with his troop he discovered a sexual proclivity that he has issues with to this day.

While there are support groups for those who can only become aroused while singing in a round, Davin has never had the courage to look them up.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Where Aren't They Now: 50

Skiff Smithison grew up in the hills of West Virginia, in a town called Switchcord Crossing, where his older brothers--he had four--passed down between them the art of the dirt bike. Skiff was on a bike by the time he was five, learning how to keep the bike under him, how not to fly over the handlebars by braking too hard.

And Skiff loved his dirt-bike.

By the time Skiff was in high school, his interest in dirt-biking had yet to wane, and he was gaining new interests. He loved to read, and could curl up with a good book on Dirt-Biking for hours. He began to sketch and paint, and soon learned the precise shade of brown that
most closely resembled the freshly churned dirt as it parabola'd through the air off the rear tire of his awesome electric blue 200cc Honda. He wrote bad high-school poetry for his bad high-school poetry

O, how I love to study the species
With its lovely four strokes filling 200cc's
The future is now! It's the ADs, not BCs!
Alas, you may now, re: my nutz, suck on these, please.

Skiff wasn't much of a dirt-bike racer, nor were his older brothers. They preferred to roam the hills and hollers of Switchcord Crossing on trails they often cut themselves. One afternoon in the late summer haze, the brothers Smithison almost literally ran into a black bear, the encounter costing Skiff's older brother Reg his life--clogged square across the face by the angry ursus--and a panic-caused crash left Skiff without the use of his legs, paralyzed from the waist down.

Today Skiff works as a guidance counselor for Switchcord Crossing High School.

This entry is a GUEST POST! Ben Compton is taking the reins today. If you'd like to write a guest post let me know and I'll send a picture your way!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Where Aren't They Now: 49

Joan only like to meet new people. When she sleeps at the end of the day, she wipes the slate clean. She never calls or keeps in touch in any way with the people that she meets on a day-to-day basis.

She works from home, writing freelance and submitting the work with as little correspondence as possible. She rarely meets her employers, and if she absolutely must, she tries her best to keep it to one meeting.

She does have family, but they are few and far between. Her parents passed away a couple of years ago, within weeks of one another. She has no siblings and it is fairly easy to duck her extended family.

Clearly there is no room in Joan's life for a steady relationship-- it would be quite impossible. But Joan is not unhappy! She has met so many thousand more people than you or I will ever take true notice of. She does her best to make solid connections with these single-day people in her life, and many of them think of Joan long after they've separated.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Where Aren't They Now: 48

Becquie rings in the new year the same way, year after year: she pops open a cheap Riesling and looks at pictures of previous New Year's Eves.

This cheers her up every time, despite the fact that her scrapbook is stocked with pictures of Becquie looking at pictures. At least the photographs get a bit more complicated: a picture of 2008 Becquie looking at a picture of 2007 Becquie looking at a picture of 2006 Becquie, etc.

Only the Riesling remains unchanged.