Date Archives April 2006

PSA: Clowns are Evil.

Before I write about an assortment of other things, first a public service announcement:

WARNING! CLOWN LURER in the Laurelhurst area!

What child in his or her right mind would follow a CLOWN anywhere? ESPECIALLY if there’s no candy involved? Everyone knows that in order to get children into a van, you need to lure them with candy. Creepy bastards.

Also, who came up with the title ‘clown lurer’? It sounds more like someone who lures clowns away than a clown who is planning to abduct children.

Lastly, I do children’s parties and whatnot. Do you want my card? I’ve got it over here in my warm van. You can take it home and color it, it’s got a picture of a robot pirate on it.

Robo-origins revealed!

I decided that today would be an opportune day to tell all of you how the robot came to be. As I’ve said before, the very first robot (may it rest in peace) was made by derrickito, here in Seattle. Derrick is int0rwebnet famous for his shenanigans in addition to the robot–dressing up as a ninja (with Scotty) and terrorizing neighborhood bars and grocery stores, biking in drag, and his most famous experiment: Homeless Week, also with Scotty.

The premise is that they went homeless for a week to make an ‘internet documentary’ of sorts to raise awareness of the homeless situation in Seattle. For this, they were ripped apart by multiple newspapers.

But back to the robots: Derrick built the first one, and had been using it to wander around town. How and where did I gain possession of it? It all started in Chicago.

Everyone mentioned in this post are members of a web forum for graphic designers, where we spend copious amounts of time talking about dead hookers and gas masks (with the exception of the editorial writer, with his delicate sensibilities, he’d be offended and driven out within minutes).

In April of 2003, the year I turned 21, many of us decided to converge upon Chicago and spend a weekend of boozification. Derrick packed up his robot costume, and he, Scotty, Dana, and Tim all flew from Seattle. Ian came from Toronto. Jeff and Michelle came from Madison. Mitch, Amye, and Jeremy came from Ohio. Audrey and Mr. Audrey came from Detroit. Chelle came from Baltimore. Dustin and Sheri came from Milwaukee. I came from California. And, God help him, Felix hosted all of us at his place.


Scotty, Ian, and I at the first bar of the evening, already showing boozy-pink cheeks.

Derrick brought out the costume at Club Foot. He’d checked it as baggage, and consequently, he marked the box as being ‘fragile’, as boxes covered in duct tape often are just that.


Derrick peeks out of the costume.

000ae9bh 000af963

And then proceeds to make suggestive hand gestures toward the package, lest we forget that robots can love. You know, fully functional and anatomically correct?

After a while, Derrick tired of the costume and started passing it around. First Felix tried it on, as is well and proper for our host.

000a7kxy 000a8eb7

Look how he mesmerizes and hypnotizes in that sheath of duct tape!


After that, Felix passed the head onto me–I couldn’t wear the body if I still wanted to sit in the booth, and with as much as I’d been drinking, I *definitely* wanted to sit right then. Also, if you’ll notice: Throwing up the horns the first time you put on the costume is instinctual. Because it ROCKS SO HARD, you can’t do otherwise.


Once I had the costume on completely, I was UNSTOPPABLE. Also, more horns.


I believe Ian was trying to mind-meld with me. That, or simply make eye-contact, which is remarkably difficult to do while wearing that costume!


Ian, teaching all of us to dance.


The robot can’t take a bad picture!

So at about this point, Ian spied a bike chained up on the street, and attempted to free it, the better to ride around. Note the robot peeking out behind the crowd.

000akrad  000aqprz

Mitch wasn’t going to take any sass from a CANADIAN, so he preceded to show Ian what happens when you try to steal bikes in ‘merica. Scotty points out the action. We were all incredibly drunk at this point, if you couldn’t already tell.


This picture was taken in the second-to-last bar. The place was packed, yet people seemed remarkably nonplussed that brought a robot into the place.


Look to the far left of the picture. That guy whose face you can half-see? Yeah, he was hitting on me. IN THE ROBOT COSTUME. I’m as shocked as you are.

I did start it, though. Drunk and confident, I walked up to him and said “Would you care to buy a strange robot a drink?” I’ve since discovered that line ALWAYS works. It should be used sparingly, as with great power comes alcoholic blindness and irreparable liver damage, yadda yadda.


Now you know the picture my icon came from. At this point, it was getting HOT inside that costume. Not only from the booze–cardboard is a far better insulator than I ever would have guessed. I stood out on the street to get some air, and found myself heckling passersby, asking them if they thought they were TOO GOOD to wave to a robot when they walked right by me. It’s really amazing no one kicked my ass that night.

With the exception of Dustin. He felt that things were ‘too boring’ in the bar, so he started a fight with me to liven things up. Clash of the titans! He broke the antenna off of the head, and stabbed it into one of the eyes. In a matter of minutes, both eyes were missing, and the antenna was hucked across the bar. For some reason, after that point, the costume still stayed on.

0007f17g 0007g8k1  robot

Around this time, Scotty and Rob got into some sort of SPANKING CONTEST. These guys were absolutely wailing on each other, full force, roundhouse blows. I’m not quite sure what this was supposed to prove…




All I knew was that I wanted in. Rob explained to me that I was not allowed to hold back, that I simply must hit Scotty as hard as possible. Ok, I think I can do that!





It’s much harder than you might think to spank someone around a cardboard box. After that, everyone started getting in on the action. I’m still not sure what it was supposed to prove.

The robot was dead at this point. We brought it into the fourth and final bar, but the bartender flipped out and wouldn’t allow us to stay if we kept the costume. It was abandoned outside in an alleyway, and we stumbled back to Felix’s place in search of aspirin, water, and Chicago style hot-dogs.

From that day forward, I carried on the robo-torch, bringing love and cardboard together with copious amounts of duct tape and booze.

I uploaded a crapton more pictures from that weekend (186 altogether, to be specific), so if you’re interested in some more of the crazy things that went on (Derrick almost going home with a transvestite, trashcan diving, pole dancing, Felix taking potentially deadly dares for $2, and our afterhours trip through IBM), check out the gallery.