Filed under "Humor"

A Suggested TV Commercial Script for Tobacco Lobbyists.

25 January 2009 • Filed under ,

Guys, this meme has been working wonders for the high fructose corn syrup cause. Maybe it’ll help take the heat off you, too.

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How to Write an Episode of Fringe.

15 October 2008 • Filed under ,

  1. Open the show with a scene of some random person with “special abilities” wreaking havoc on innocent people.
  2. Agent Dunham and the X-Squad to the rescue!
  3. Insert predictable field research scenes with lots of confused & incredulous looks.
  4. Peter “Pacey” Bishop says something stunningly witty and passively crushes on Agent Dunham.

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How iPhone Has Changed My Life, Solved World Hunger and Given My Car A High-Gloss Wax Job.

3 August 2008 • Filed under ,

Okay, perhaps that headline is a bit overblown.

I’ve never owned a smartphone. In fact, I’ve owned dumb phones. Very dumb phones. Like, “Hay, muh name is Cletus. The internets? Ain’t that the little stretchy net on th’ ping-pong table?” dumb.

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I Have A Fever, And The Only Prescription Is More... iPhone?

24 March 2008 • Filed under ,

Apple products have a way of engaging me in a little game I like to call “Buy Me First And Then Let Me Deliciously Reveal, With Panache And Nuance, My Usefulness Later On Down The Road.” It kills at parties.

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How To Architect a Critical Software Update.

19 November 2007 • Filed under ,

  1. Don’t update your customers on how the update is going on your Home page. This is called “creating hype and mystique.”
  2. Maintain radio silence on your blog for 3 weeks after your initial “we are working on an update” post. This builds buzz and sizzle.
  3. Don’t update the product page with information on when your customers might expect the update. No one would look there anyways, right?
  4. Keep all discussion about the update confined to a poorly-constructed message board thread. And by “thread” I mean thread with lame navigation.
  5. Be very cryptic when responding to questions on the poorly-constructed message board thread. Everyone loves a mystery!

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Ten Things To Do While Waiting for AT&T to Hook Up Your Internet Service

21 August 2007 • Filed under ,

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Re-brand New.

1 April 2007 • Filed under

Several minutes ago, I finally started on a 100% new and original logo design — something I’d been meaning to do for hours. It went rather quickly, playing with four curly brackets set in Avenir Myriad Pro that created a totally original, unstolen frame around a capital “J”. I used Myriad Pro for maximum originalness. This 100% original idea finally gave me something I didn’t hate the next day for being stolen from someone else. I’m excited to have a mark that I didn’t steal and will be flexible going forward, and it was crucial for me to create one that could be any size, or color (even looking intact using a single color) and that was — again — totally and completely a 100% original idea that I in no way trolled the internet for and stole from anyone else’s site or anything. I hope you all enjoy my 100% original idea that I didn’t find while desperately searching CSS galleries for logos to make a quick buck off of. I can sleep soundly each night knowing that my logo is 100% original, not 98% or even 2%. Seriously. I swear.

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Five Things (You Didn't Know) About Me.

13 January 2007 • Filed under

With the whole of north Texas on the cusp of what all the TV stations are dubbing The Arctic Blast™, I figure I’ve got all the time I need to write that meme Nathan sent me like forever ago.

So without further ado, here are five things you really didn’t know about me:

  1. In June of 1215, I wrote the Magna Carta. Yes, the document that is heralded by such fine sources as Wikipedia as “one of the most important legal documents in the history of democracy.” Blah blah blah. Hey, times were tough. As if it wasn’t bad enough that King “Dysentary” John was handing out tickets to whoever walked through his precious forest anyway he didn’t like, I think he was planning on taxing my wenches. My wenches, I tell you! Clearly, the man had to be stopped, and I didn’t have a kettle big enough to hold the amount of boiling oil equal to my indignation. So I borrowed a sheep from Baron Steve across the bog from my castle, flattened it into some parchment and the rest is history. Thou art welcome.
  2. I discovered America. I know what you’re thinking: Columbus discovered America, or is at least credited with it. No, no, and no again. Truth of the matter is, my ship — The Magic Pony — caught up with Chris’s fleet about 20 days out from Spain. Columbus, being a bit of a betting man (and a braggart), started boasting about how awesome his sails were and how they were “filled with the winds of destiny” and some such. Then he challenged me to a race, which I won because I “harnessed the winds of destiny” while he was busy tinkling off the port bow. Pwned.
  3. I’ve met Noah. Right, the guy who built the giant ship and created the first and only floating zoo. And you know what? He’s not the Debbie Downer the Bible makes him out to be. Sure, he had to call a lot of people sinners. But check it out: he saved the Lesser White-Nosed Guenon. You can’t do something like that with a straight face. Too bad about those ligers, though. We ran out of sweet rolls after 31 days and 32 nights, and I don’t have to tell you how that story ended…
  4. I discovered fire. Haha, just kidding. That would be ridiculous, right? I mean, how in the world would I have done that? But I did invent the wheel, and subsequently the Michelin Man. Look it up.
  5. I am a time-travelling cyborg. And before you ask: yes, Terminator was based on my life story. Except in real life, I didn’t go back in time to kill John Connor. I go back in time to kidnap the defective T-DUBYA model and prevent it from becoming president. Unfortunately, Terminator model T-CHENEY intercepted and shot me in the face, which pretty much derailed that plan.

I hope ya learned something new about me. I know I did!

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Regarding The Dismal State of Fortunes.

27 November 2006 • Filed under

Kids, one of my favorite things about eating at Chinese-type establishments is fortune cookies. And it’s not just that thick cookie crunch that draws me — it’s the idea of a message hidden inside, too. Now maybe it’s just a false memory (kind of like how great steak tastes inside the Matrix), but I seem to remember fortune cookies being a lot more interesting that anything I’ve noticed lately.

My wife and I met up with our Dead Friend™ Abel and his fiancée (not dead) for dinner this weekend at our favorite Westernized-Chinese food establishment, Pei Wei. Check out the abysmal level of effort gracing these notes we unwrapped at the end of our meal:

Gosh, what scintillating news. Never mind that the first and third fortunes are basically identical (and bad advice to boot). Or that the second item is more of a suggestion than a fortune. The important thing to note is that these notes wrapped inside a crunchy sweet cookie are incredibly boring. At least throw in some Confucius sayings or Bob Dylan lyrics — something I can use to impress people at meetings or parties.

I don’t know about you, but I’d much rather crack open a fortune cookie and read something like:

And that questionable hilarity is just off the top of my head. Unfortunately, the creativity and passion surrounding fortune cookies seems to be right on par with cowtipping or Nickelback in Portugal. There’s no imagination, no fun, and certainly no differentiation between one fortune cookie experience and the next.

Well thank goodness for this crazy series of tubes, eh? Until the Chinese eatery industry realizes the snoozefest they’re baking into each and every cookie, we’ll have to be satisfied with the superior creativity available on the interweb:

What message would you rather find in your fortune cookie?

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Carbine Action.

26 November 2006 • Filed under ,

With the Thanksgiving holiday now behind us, there is clearly only one logical theatrical choice to usher in the imminent Christmas season.

Get thee to a television set.

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The Making of a Lovable Mascot.

25 September 2006 • Filed under ,

  1. Resembles perfect cube of poop? Check.
  2. Represents edible food in spite of poop-like properties? Check.
  3. Communicates with creepy giggles and hugs? Check.
  4. Leaves messy brown smears on all who touch him? Check.
  5. Interactive site is made available en español so that El Blocko de Poopo can be enjoyed by all Americanos? Check.
Oh, Fudgems!

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Peter Chernin Is The New Ron Burgundy.

13 September 2006 • Filed under

“If you look at virtually any Web 2.0 application, whether its[sic] YouTube, whether it’s Flicker[sic],* whether it’s Photobucket or any of the next-generation Web applications, almost all of them are really driven off the back of MySpace.” – Peter Chernin


“I don’t know how to put this, but… I’m kind of a big deal.” – Ron Burgundy


*Flicker? Seriously?

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Nina Gordon is Totally My Friend.

18 August 2006 • Filed under

I don’t even know where to begin. I feel so honored. First of all I’d like to thank Nina herself for friending me. I’ve thought it would be cool to be Nina’s friend since back in the day when she was shredding it up with Veruca Salt. Our friendship is young, but I just know that we’re totally going to be IMing soon and sharing inside jokes. Oh, it’ll be the best, hanging out backstage and stuff. I can’t wait!

I’d also like to thank MySpace for giving me the means to be best buds with all my favorite celebrities. I’m just giddy with thoughts of who might friend me next! Fear Factor’s loudmouth host, Joe Rogan? Ex-Blink182 drummer and feuding divorcee Travis Barker? Popozao himself, K-Fed? Oh man, I think my head’s going to explode with virtual joy.

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Carte Blanche.

3 August 2006 • Filed under ,

Hey, friend! Has this ever happened to you?

Client: “Hi there, Designer. How’s the new website coming?”
Designer: “Oh, just swell! I’ve added a big orange aquafied “Buy now!” button here on your homepage, set up your blog, given you RSS 2.0 syndication and enabled customer tagging on all your products. Not to mention the fact that I’ve used no less than 24 gradients, drop shadows on everything and big friendly fonts for that youthful, warm, feel-good vibe.”
Client: “Uh… you do remember that this is an Amish mortuary, right?”
Designer: grumble… “No one appreciates my art…”

Don’t you wish there was — oh, I don’t know — a card or something that you could pull out at such moments and in no uncertain terms establish that you know exactly what grieving widows and fatherless children are looking for in a web app?

Well now there is! Introducing the “Hi, I’m a web2.0 designr.” card! Constructed of high-quality PSD materials, this card is the perfect wallet-sized sidearm for any designer designr. Authoritatively declaring your mastery of rounded corners, drop shadows, gradients, glows, friendly fonts and The Web2.0 Filter, this card promises to establish your dominance and subdue even the hardiest filter-hater. Dude, reflections and the yellow fade are HOT, and they won’t take “no” for an answer. And now neither will you!

Download your card today! Simply open the PSD, insert your photo, print and sign. And the next time someone complains that your “Arrange for funeral proceedings” button looks “too much like a Skittle,” you extract that card and show them what’s what! ;)

» Download the “Hi, I’m a web2.0 designr” card (ZIP, 680 KB)

Update: So yeah, now there’s a Frickr group pool for this madness. Upload and add, folks.

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How To Create a Tightly-Controlled Online Advertising Environment Poorly Disguised as a Social Network.

24 July 2006 • Filed under ,

  1. Watch an episode of “That 70’s Show” that all the kids are watching, appropriate the name of Eric, Kelso, Fez & the gang’s favorite hangout and hope no one notices said appropriation.
  2. Make really bad typographic and color decisions for that ultra-successful “undesigned” look that’s going around.
  3. Create a fictional tween named “Ashley.”
  4. Include pictures of “Ashley” but don’t let anyone get a good look at her by offering larger views of the pics. The internet is full of dirty awful stalkers, you know.
  5. Have “Ashley” upload a “homemade” video where all she talks about are Walmart clothes.
  6. Let “Ashley” write a “blog” full of marketing-speak geared to appeal to the target demographic.
  7. Put the blog in an inline frame. Because accessibility and usability are for uncool, non-social people.
  8. Let “Ashley” upload hot jams!
  9. OMG, add some indie flair!
  10. Make sure your GIF images are poorly produced and ragged to project authenticity.

Tag and Note this hotness on Flickr.

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Greetings, Meat Balloons.

30 June 2006 • Filed under

Image - SkippyHow’s it going, tender bellies? Since Mr. Digital has been oh so busy and neglected you electrolyte sacks for the past week, I’ve decided it’s high time I stepped in and wrestled control introduced myself.

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You Might Be A Designer If...

14 June 2006 • Filed under ,

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What Web Designers Really Want for Valentine's Day.

13 February 2006 • Filed under ,

.truelove {
corners: rounded;
corners-radius: 5px;
gradient: vertical;
gradient-top: #000;
gradient-bottom: #555;
border: 2px solid #fff;
dropshadow: yes;
dropshadow-opacity: 50%;
dropshadow-color: #000;
dropshadow-x-offset: right 5px;
dropshadow-y-offset: bottom 5px;

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Abel Is Dead.

27 January 2006 • Filed under

You may remember Abel as the guy whose website has been was permanently glued to the front page of CSS Vault for the past 6 months (or more). Such exposure is definitely not for the faint of heart, and after reading scores of emails which astutely pointed out validation errors on, Abel’s head must have exploded, because his site has not been updated in months.

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Things to Remember When Working for The Man.

21 January 2006 • Filed under

The Man is always trying to bring you down. Don’t let the lure of opportunity and false accomplishment fool you. The Man wants you to fail because failure always fits well into any business model.

The Man owns all your organs and bodily fluids. Check the fine print in your contract, short stack.

The Man only hired you just so he could crush your dreams…

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Hair Nation.

19 January 2006 • Filed under ,

Since my car is currently in the shop getting a nip and a tuck, I have a rental car. And that rental car has a product of the modern world that I have nary encountered: Sirius satellite radio. Satellite radio has more “stations” that the entire AM/FM band combined, so it’s been fun exploring various stations on my travel time to and from work.

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An Open Letter to the Driver of a 1996 Honda Civic.

19 September 2005 • Filed under

Ah, rush hour. Cars pack together in anticipation of going home to rest and relaxation. It’s Friday, and traffic is slow. Everyone’s a bit edgy. As you pull up next to me in the adjacent lane, stereo thumping in ways that shouldn’t be legal, I recall a dream I once had. Actually, it’s not so much a dream as a recurring daydream. At any rate, it brings a smile to my face. And here’s why:

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A Tale of Ink and Paper.

25 July 2005 • Filed under ,

Last Saturday I was typing up some papers that had to be printed out when the inkjet printer that came free with my computer purchase informed me that my black ink was about to run out. I shouldn’t have been surprised; as these el cheapo printers get more compact and “space-efficient,” so do the ink cartridges.

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A Typical Day.

13 June 2005 • Filed under

Well, today was going to be the day that I posted my writeup revealing The Answer To Everything, but since Garrett hit me upside with this Madlibs meme business, you’ll have to wait a few more days to find meaning in your existence.

And it goes a little something like this:

A typical day for J to the Dizzital.

On a typical day I wake up, wash the papaya residue from my armpits and put on my chinos. I say goodbye to Zsa Zsa Gabor and I jet to a space staion where I am a designer. I feel ambivalent about what I do, sure I’d rather be a corn-shucker in Anytown, USA, but this pays the bills and buys me lots of tribbles that I can punt.

My morning is pretty ho-hum. Aside from my 836,347,362 trips to the lavatory to plot world domination and my zesty encounter with Garrett, it’s just the same every day.

I break for lunch and draw with Bill Gates over a clammy plate of sushi. A quick jaunt to Best Buy to shoot the breeze with Abel, who’s a total Jedi warrior, and it’s back to the grind, until 12:01 when I jump in my puce Gremlin and head for home.

My evening is spent playing Yahtzee and listening to Neil Diamond while rolling around the living room wishing I was Rocky Balboa and drinking all sorts of sparkling water. Then it’s off to bed where I dream of Jeannie(what else?) and Ryan Sims in a leisure suit(wha…?).

Three people to whom I am passing this here meme:

  1. George W. Bush (Yes, again)
  2. Abel Rios
  3. Chuck Mallott

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Sweet Fancy Moses! I've Become A Web Standards Elitist?

10 December 2004 • Filed under ,

It was such a smooth transition, unlike the rambunctious sneak attack I might have expected. Little did I know, when I dove into the web standards pool, that I would become a nitpicking fault-finder.

January 2004: I begin my year like any other, wishing I had a million dollars. Resigning to the fact that I will indeed have to hold down a job for the rest of my life, I head off to work. Once there, I continue designing and developing whatever project I had going on at the time, every once in a while taking a deserved break to hit up my favorite design portals for inspiration.

Fast forward to August 2004: I begin my day like any other, wishing I had a million dollars. Resigning to the fact that I will indeed have to hold down a job for the rest of my life, I head off to work. Once there, I continue designing and developing whatever project I had going on at the time, every once in a while taking a deserved break to hit up my favorite web standards blogs/sites for additional nuggets of CSS/XHTML wisdom. If and when I returned to my old design portal haunts to check out new pretty web work, I found myself hitting the ol’ Apple+Shift+D combo, unlocking the underbelly- exposing power of the Firefox Web Developer extention’s “Disable Styles” option. Oh, the horror! Tables, tables everywhere! Triple-nested tables! Inline styles! Bloated markup! Insanely complex Javascript rollovers! No declaring of a DOCTYPE! Noooooooooo!

My foray into the expanding world of standards compliant design had taught me many things. Wonderful, simplifying, filesize-reducing, easily-updateable, accessible things. But it had also left me with a sudden and surprising distaste for techniques that I myself had been employing mere months in the past. Before really making an effort to understand all the hype surrounding web standards, I sometimes passed off prominent standards advocates as boring, technical-minded, non-visual, nitpicking standards elitists. Gasp! Could I be be turning into the thing I had once judged so harshly?

You betcha.

Ignorance is definitely not bliss. We may be tempted to think it is, but it is not. Knowledge is bliss. While CSS support is admittedly patchy, I am consoled in the fact that almost no bug is insurmountable, forward-compatability is ensured, and everyone — regardless of how they access the internet — is invited to the party.

I don’t think I could ever go back to table-based design unless it was truly the only way out. Every time I see a mangled mess of nested tables, I think of the hell it must be on screenreaders and alternate media devices, not to mention the wasted transfer of useless, structure-enforcing kilobytes.

I’ve toned it down a bit lately. I do still analyze my work and the work of others, and make no apologies for finding shortcomings in them. I marvel at the complex means some people (myself included) have used to reach a simple, elegant end. But I no longer Apple+Shift+D every website I visit. I acquiesce to the notion that sometimes tables may be needed for page structure. With the mechanics of web standards under my belt, I can once again refocus on design. It’s a happy place. And, if anything, the study of web standards has made me a better designer. This year, I have learned that good design starts with a good foundation. I don’t have web standards to exclusively thank for that knowledge, but it does deserve a portion.

Here’s to a more organized, more beautiful, more accessible, better-designed future. Elitists unite!

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© Jared Christensen

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