Sunday, August 31, 2003

shop antihero
Doesn't everyone want a poster with me on it?!

Saturday, August 30, 2003

Culture of Cool.
Last night, Melissa and I came to the conclusion that photographer Cindy Sherman, through no fault of her own, may be the coolest person in the world. [article from salon]

Three options:
1. Remove all desires
2. Get everything I want
3. Apathy

I know I'm missing something. Oh yeah...

4. Be content

Friday, August 29, 2003

The Friday Five - Aug 29, 2003

1. Are you going to school this year?
Well, I teach at a school.

2. If yes, where are you going (high school, college, etc.)? If no, when did you graduate?
I teach at a high school in the DFW area. I graduated from Texas A&M at Commerce in 2000.

3. What are/were your favorite school subjects?
English (big surprise) - mostly writing classes, Philosophy, Counselling

4. What are/were your least favorite school subjects?
Would it be cliche to say math? No, I liked math. I just wasn't good at it.

5. Have you ever had a favorite teacher? Why was he/she a favorite?
Ms. Rob (in high school) - she's knowledgeable and passionate about teaching, Mr. Grimshaw (in college) - a nice kind person, I enjoyed talking with him in his office. We also went out to lunch a few times while working on my thesis.

Thursday, August 28, 2003

live just one life
The reason why I should probably never write an adaptation of the life of Christ...

I had an image pop in my head today while driving to work. Jesus Christ steps out of the tomb. He looks sorta like Silent Bob, except with a long white robe. Angels are singing the "hallelujah" chorus; light shines all around him. And then, JC puts on a pair of shades. The music changes to this swanky jazz number, and the savior of mankind does a little Cosby-dance while the credits roll.

Wednesday, August 27, 2003

Resident calls panther statue 'pagan' ~ Star Telegram 8/27/03

It could be replaced, she suggested, with a marble display of the Bill of Rights or the Constitution, or a "few choice law-abiding phrases such as ... thou shall not steal ... thou shall not kill ... thou shall not covet thy neighbor's wife ..." Castillo said she would also not be bothered by a statue of a steer, because Fort Worth is nicknamed "Cowtown," but that a "cat-type animal brings more sinister symbolism."
Lately, I've been playing the "if I had a million dollars" game way too much. Although, in all honesty, the game has progressed to "if I had a billion dollars." (Never enough, huh?) Ultimately, the day dream is not about money and more about limitless resources to accomplish stuff that would otherwise take way too much hard work, sacrifice, and dumb luck (or providence, depending on how you see it). The sad truth about this game? It's usually not about making the world a better place-- it's about making your world better for you. I could save THOUSANDS of lives with a billion dollars or I commit it to my own self serving agenda. However, we must admit that even with a hundred dollars (which I sometimes have) I could save a life, maybe even two. Do I dedicate my resources to that? No. And once again, I am haunted by the scene in Schindler's List-- "I could have saved one more." So, the game "if I had a billion dollars" ends up being about dreams-- because the reality is, we have money and we play games with it as well. The guilt for some is therapy, for some it's religion, for others it's nausea.
Classical Brubeck
I heard a bit of this album during an NPR Morning Edition music review. This album is one of the strangest and coolest things I have heard in quite some time. And please bear in mind, I listen to dEUS. For something to be considered "strange" by my standards is a real accomplishment. Or maybe Brubeck is strange because he sounds so right (the fusion of jazz and classical), while much of the popular music is akwkard and sheepish. I want to get this CD.

Tuesday, August 26, 2003

Every time one of my students laughs and I don't know why they're laughing, I assume my fly is down. Every time.
(WARNING: dark humor may scare the innocent)

my friend Sygnin says good bye to blogger in a bold farewell:
I'm sorry if I bothered anyone with my rantings. No I am not going to kill myself, but if I do, I will try and do it quietly so that no one notices. Not that many people will notice anyway if I walked into a mall and slit my wrist there. I think. Well i mean they would notice, but they wouldnt notice-notice, you know? Anyway, ta ta.

friend of mine jim lujan ~ funny site

Monday, August 25, 2003

The New Cold Steel 88K Katana (only $499) ~ so pretty
I have trouble feeling sympathic...
Kickball! The World Adult Kickball Association is starting a Dallas league. I'd rather play futball, but sadly, I may be too lazy for either one. I don't want to join a freakin' league or anything-- however, I'd be up for a game of something on a nice Saturday afternoon. I need to be more active. I spend way too much time bemoaning my fat gut.

Rule 8.01 - No bouncies.

the revolution will not be televised ~ gil scott-heron (before there was fight club)
Thank you (yet again) Dan, for showing me everything that's worthwhile on the internet. (Why do I even blog?) This article is simply beautiful. I posted some of my favorite moments from it. But please don't let me ruin it-- if you haven't already, read the article first.

* If a person is going to waste his life cranking the stereo, clicking the remote, reading paperback pulp and chasing diet fads, he may as well save his soul while he's at it.
* (she's a virgin, presumably, but just barely)
* These new Christian bands rock like Americans play soccer: skillfully but somehow not convincingly.
* I also support people's right to shape reality in whatever way they see fit.
* A few more days without Disney or Nickelodeon and Bibleman will look pretty good to her.
* What I don't understand about these Left Behind books is how there can be so f--ing many of them, given that their subject is Armageddon.
* You thought you were such hot s--t, I hear them thinking. Look at you now--you're not even allowed to cuss!
* A rambling sermon about generosity loses itself in an endless and painful anecdote about a mentally retarded busboy who toiled at a truck stop to buy medicine for his sick mom until he fell ill and was hospitalized himself.
* Who cares if it's sunny or rainy? Details, details. Who cares about traffic conditions? The Lord is coming!
* The twentyish host has a fuzzy soul patch, a grungy plaid shirt and a shock of spiky hair that like most Christian versions of "downtown" style, is years out of date and ever so slightly too clean. Plus, his earrings look suspiciously like clip-ons.
* Fundamentalist Christian children's media is preoccupied with dinosaurs. The monstrous lizards and their fossilized remains represent a big black buzzing fly in the wholesome lemonade of creationism. If you lose a bright 5-year-old on the dinosaur issue--and what bright 5-year-old isn't mad for dinosaurs?--then you may lose him on the God thing too, or at least on the Holy Bible-as-perfect-truth thing.
* (4) The carbon-dating process is a farce. It just is.
* Without the courage to lead, it numbly follows, picking up the major media's scraps and gluing them back together with a cross on top.
* He's a guy in a mask who instead of socking people stands stock-still with his slushy gut sucked in, squares his not-broad shoulders, faces the evildoer and bores him into submission by quoting Isaiah.
* It's bedtime now. Tomorrow is a new day. Off the Ark and back onto the sinking ship.
* a prayer for Jewel: Do whatever it takes to get back on top, my dear, but don't go "Christian." They have their Jewel already. I forget her name, but I saw her on the CD rack, and the chick is your twin, only prettier, and a virgin.

Walter Kirn, I do believe you wrote the manifesto to the revolution.

Sunday, August 24, 2003

I was invited to join the Ooze blog. Cool. Since I'm a joiner by nature, I couldn't refuse. (Geez, tell good Christians they shouldn't read your blog and instead they invite you to post on their's... how odd.) Anyways, I contributed a few thoughts-- you know, to be a good guest. I had some ideas floating around from the last time I watched Seven Samurai. *read more*
paying money to sit on his back (via shanna)

Saturday, August 23, 2003

Just got back from the fancy art gallery party. As tradition, I ate several plate-full portions of cheese squares-- mix in some strawberries and watermelon slices for variety. I swear I hover over the food table at these events, always have. Our college friend Bob Bird showed some of his artwork-- the exhibit was called "Biomorphic Neo-Plasticism". It was a nice mix between abstract painting and design.

One of the great things about being married to a photographer is attending the fancy art gallery parties. We're going to one in a few minutes. I smell like Dove soap, Mitchum deodorant, Neutrogena face lotion and shaving gel, Dep12 pomade, and a hint of Hugo cologne-- it's my party smell.

Friday, August 22, 2003

A few mintues ago, I discovered that Sofia Coppola and Spike Jonze are married. Holy crap! They will spawn a family of visual/narrative genuises-- the world will not be prepared.

Makes me wish more filmmakers would write comic books.
you never know, do you? (via andrew)
bury the dead (via dan)
Tim Burton is filming an adaptation of Charlie and The Chocolate Factory. He's casting his golden boy Johnny Depp for the lead role-- like the original film wasn't creepy enough.
"I grew up as a son of a funeral director ... I have always been surrounded by death and by grief. And, yet, it is still so hard to see those you love struggling with intense grief." - linsay martens

Thursday, August 21, 2003

The dullest blog in the world
A cute new phrase used my students--
"Aw snap!" (and updated version of the classic "gee-whiz")
Does IM Make U Dum?
by Martha Brockenbrough
So anyone who tells you it's never okay to crunch down language into more easily chewable pieces had better be willing to holler "taximeter cabriolet" the next time he's in New York.

Wednesday, August 20, 2003

our cat has a stress disorder
I had a really great time last night. And oddly enough, in the morning, I woke up depressed.

My friend Dan invited me to go with him and Thomas to a friend's place to watch a movie. Shanna was there. Kausar and Emily were also there. Beyond that, it was mostly people I don't know very well-- but people who seemed really nice and possibly people I could get to know. Our hosts made some of the best pizza I've had in a long time. They had the cutest baby. We watched The Professional, which was a good freakin' movie. (I'll have to post about that later.)

So why the mild bout of depression? After "playing back" the evening through my head (which is something I compulsively do... I swear every conversation I've ever had has been scrutinized via mental review), I realized I spend A LOT of the evening talking about myself. Everything went back to me. How pathetic. I feel like huckster, a shameless self-promoter. I really do care about other people. However, I subconsciously treat every conversation as a moment to tell people about myself. If that doesn't depress, I don't know what would.

That's why I'm re-designing my blog. I'm tired of looking at my name right now. I'd rather be anonymous for awhile.
Please bear with me while I re-design my blog. I'm still getting used to having a right margin side bar.
Okay, I promise this is the VERY LAST mean-spirited blogpost I ever make (I may even delete this post by the end of the day)... but please, Len, stop...

Jesus Drives Me Crazy!
Leonard Sweet

I don't know. It's really unfair of me. But Len, each of your book covers (and titles) gets progressively goofier than the previous one. You've been clowned, and you did it to yourself. I've heard you speak before. You've inspired me in the past. But with each new product you create, I distance myself a little bit more from this entire "postmodern/emerging" marketing carnival.

I'm so jadded right now. Good Christians shouldn't read my blog. Maybe I'll pull out of this disillusionment, but it's always easier to be critical than constructive. I know that. Leonard Sweet, I might dislike your antics. But I promise you... I hate mine infinitely more. Because I look at your clownish ways, and realize I may only be a few steps away from that ledge.

Tuesday, August 19, 2003

Ellis Island

Last night, using their database of over 22 million (!!!) entries, I was able to find information on my great-great-grandfather Andrew Jesse Hopkins who immigrated from Ireland to America in 1904. Amazing.
It's lunchtime. The students outside my room are fighting over who gets to be chess club president this year. Maybe I should intervene, but I think I'll let them fight it out.

Monday, August 18, 2003

Today, I started my 4th year teaching high school English. First days are a weird ritual in American schools. Most every student wears a brand new outfit. They all appear spotless and unwrinkled-- nervously quiet. (That won't last.) Twenty-five strange faces all staring at me, quietly wondering, "Will I like this teacher?" The first day is important. Students choose whether or not they will want to learn in your class.

Friday, August 15, 2003

an immigration threat

1. How much time do you spend online each day?
At least six hours a day.

2. What is your browser homepage set to?
At work: the school district's webpage, at home: yahoo dsl

3. Do you use any instant messaging programs? If so, which one(s)?
I used MSN messenger, but recently I haven't been instant messaging.

4. Where was your first webpage located?
My first website was on the Texas A&M University at Commerce student site. I made it my senior year. The address was http://boisdarc.tamu-commerce.edu/www/d/dhopkins

5. How long have you had your current website?
The blog - a year and a half, my comic book site - a few months
What's in a phrase? Joining in on the Fair and Balanced Friday Celebration!
A few years ago, I really got into stream-of-conscious poetry. Here's one I wrote in 2000.


stores and stores
like prison cells
my students live at the mall
they see me in a t-shirt & shout
Hey Mr. Hopkins
My friends laugh--
they call you "Mr."
Yep. Dang straight.

Food. Food court.
Cigar shops. SKate shops. Sword shops.
Shop till you drop.
Candy, bear, hair, clothes, perfume,

Kids chat.
Piano freak selling CDs.

Tuesday, August 12, 2003

From Harvey Pekar (possibly America's greatest writer?), a real life person with a real life movie being made about him called American Splendor

Saturday, August 09, 2003

Melissa is the coolest. Not everybody finds somebody to fall in love with; so we consider ourselves very fortunate. I saw this cartoon and I immediately thought of Melissa. That's her.

And by the way, yes, Melissa thought the Rachael Leigh Cook thing was funny. She did not get mad. If anything, the only problem is that Rachael keeps calling me. Stop it! We had a moment, and that moment is gone. It's over between us, Ms. Cook. Go make a TV series or something.

Friday, August 08, 2003

Adbusters :: Is the US fit to run the world?
Thank you to my new best friend Justin Stewart from Crap Rares. You have proved to me that the power of photo shop is mighty indeed.

part one - freshman year (continued)

Hey Dave,
What an honor, I get to be the first one to write on the Cannibal page. Anyway soon people will be craving our autographs, and I'm not going to give them out then, so they better get them while they can! It's been great being your friend this year, and I bet you Beth says yes! It'll be an awesome summer at camp and everything else might happen. Well I save some space for Wim and Jeremy.

David -------

I really enjoyed watching you in all of the drama productions-- what talent! I hope you continue to keep up with that and all your other interests such as the band. You've been really sweet to me and always have a smile on your face. Just think, you're almost a sophmore and I'm almost a Junior. Kinda scary. Anyway, I get my license in five days!!!

Jill -------

WAZUP fellow child consumer. You need a steady girlfriend & not your hand. You may want to move up to your guitar-- it will bring both of you close together. Practice, sex, practice, food, sex, practice. We're going to have fun this summer. I don't know what it's going to be but it's gonna be great. Whatever happens, happens. C-ya later bro.

Love ya,
Wim -------

* For the record, no sex was being had... by either me or Wim. However, the advice about a steady girlfriend was rather prophetic. He started dating a girl for five years, and after my sophmore year, "steady girlfriends" were all that I had.

Thanks for being strong in Christ. I'm glad to see that. Take good care of yourself.

Jeff -------

I don't know how to thank you for being such a good friend. Sometimes I wonder how I lived through this year. Thanx. If you ever need me, just call 467-####.


Chuck D said it best, "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times!" I started out shy little Kris ------- over in the corner, and now I've got lots of friends of all types... And believe it or not, I partly (if not mostly) have you to thank! You befriended me in the beginning, back when all I could think of was popularity and stuff like that, and gave me the realization taht I can actually talk to "popular kids." I no longer think like that (thank god!) but if you hadn't spoken to me, I still might have, and I would still have been quiet Kris ------- over in the corner. Thank you so much for pulling me partly out of my shell! We really gotta get together this summer and do something (musically or otherwise.) I think we could be great friends! I had much more to say but this is getting long... oh well! See ya next year! 473-####


* He's completely right. We became really good friends during high school.

(More to follow.)

Thursday, August 07, 2003

Is it over yet? Please?

a short play for my friend shanna
it's called, gender binaries,

boy: i am a 1. you are a 0.
girl: awwh, come on. you always get to be the 1.
boy: you wouldn't know what to do with 1.
girl: can't we both be 1?
boy: nope. uh-uh, then there would be no 0.
girl: maybe we could take turns being 1's and 0's.
boy: no. cause then nobody else would know who's the 1 and who's the 0.
girl: why does that matter?
boy: it just does.
girl: (girl grumbles some obscenities)

[the game begins]

1: hi honey! i'm home. we're dinner?
1: make it yourself!
1: hey, you're cheating. i'm the 1!
1: not anymore.
1: not fair.
1: not fair.
1: stop copying me.
1: stop copying-
1: stop it.
1: stop-
1: aaah.
1: aaah.
1: aaah.
1: you're copying me.


1: wait-- who's who?
1: i'm 1 right now.
1: hmmm, that doesn't sound right.
2: how about now?
1: you can't be a 2!!! 2's don't exist.
57: hee, hee, hee
3: stop it. now, i'm confused.
6: confused about what?
9: how do we get back to 1 and 0?
23: you would like that, wouldn't you?
86: maybe. but who's going to fix dinner?
2003: are you hungry?
54: kinda.
90: there's some kettle corn in the cabinet.
32: i like kettle corn.
12: good stuff.
76: just pop it in the microwave.

[two more friends enter]

0: what's that smell?
3 & 5: it's kettle corn.
1: can we have some?
489: sure.
1: hold on. something, not right here...

From my friend Summer's livejournal:

Say what you want to about traditional churches... but I grew up in one. Sure, it was a bunch or brainwashing... but I was raised by the 'village'. I got an email today from someone who knew me very well when I was 8:

Great to hear from you Summer. And from the other side
of the world! I always knew Summer Walker was special
and that God had great things in store for you. Any
young woman who could walk around under that horn you
carried in band and still smile and wave....has to be

Congratulations to Nick Prendergast and Kara Keith

From the Road Dog Productions log: "The service was performed by Elvis, and could have been really cheesy but somehow wasn't at all. Probably because the amount of love in the room for that brief period of time could have overpowered all the lights in the Vegas strip. Congratulations, my friends. I love you guys."

I got an e-mail today from some pastor who read an article I wrote for Next-Wave three years ago. Three years on the internet feels like a lifetime. This phenomena may be an unexpected side effect of the internet: a localized worldwide 1:1 historical record. Imagine, my son/daughter (who does not exist yet, has not - to my knowledge- been conceived) is 18 years old and comes across something archived on a message board that I wrote way back in 2003.

Maybe, the Internet should have it's own year of Jubiliation. Every ten years, we delete everything from every internet server worldwide. From MSN and AOL to every dinky geocities site, gone. And then we start over. It would be sacriledge-- destroying history, even internet history. All the same, there's something very unsettling about the knowledge that somewhere on the internet those hampsters are still dancing.

Monday, August 04, 2003

NORTHFORK (trailer) - Most amazing film I've seen all year? Possibly.
I'm still too blown away by it to really comment.

Sunday, August 03, 2003

photo by my friend Nate Rehlander

Melissa hosted a birthday party for our friend Karl last night. It was a cool party at his studio.

Lots of the art students I knew from Texas A&M Commerce where there. I guess you could say I was friends with them. Often times in college, it felt like they merely tolerated my pseudo-artistic presence (alas only an English/Philosophy student). I had a few people who championed my right to hang among the avante-garde, the rest simply allowed me to share space. I'm exaggerating a bit, but I sure felt like someone on the outside looking in. The art students were a fun group of people. They were unique. They were the most beautiful people in that regard. I felt horribly conventional.

Maybe it was because I don't drink to excess and I don't take drugs (except for caffeine and fast food). Moderation does not excite people and capture their curiosity. More than likely it was my involvement in the Wesleyan Campus Ministry. Religious people are scary; I don't blame them. I'm afraid of most Christians too.

At the party, I bumped into one art girl, Katie, I knew from college and introduced her to Dan and Justin who joined me. Katie remembered me as the guy who "always was handing out fliers." Oh god. I can't completely explain it, but that statement really hurt! If I died, at the funeral, she would recall me as the guy who was always trying to sell and promote stuff. Maybe it speaks something of a passionate person, but to me, it sounds like I'm a shameless distributor of propaganda. So embarrassing.

I'm sure other people see something different. HOWEVER, my own self-consciousness over how people view me only reinforces my fears of being a hopeless self-promoter.

My junior year in college I met a girl named Angela. She quickly gained a reputation of being one of the strangest girls on campus. She wore all black and stuck her hair up like Robert Smith of the Cure. She wore dark eye makeup. She worshipped David Bowie. So of course, I was immediately intrigued. We became friends, purely plutonic. I never told her about the Wesleyan Campus Ministry. I never gave her a flier. She left school almost as quickly as she arrived.

A year later, Melissa came to A&M Commerce. Around her, I've always been a whole person. I didn't have to fragment my interests in order to be loved by her. I didn't have to divide my life between ministry and feeding that appetite for being weird. And while this may sound shallow to the people who don't understand, Melissa loves punk rock and that means something to me.

Punk is not fashion. Punk is a perspective. It challenges that part deep in me that feels horribly conventional and mundane. Without it, I may become too comfortable. Nothing great ever came from people who felt comfortable with the world around them.

Friday, August 01, 2003

Dear Mayor Miller,

I recently read the Observer article by Jim Schultze concerning the crime crisis in Dallas. I also visited the website dallascrime.com. I am deeply concerned the leadership within Dallas has failed to keep its citizens safe and cared for.

I am a high school teacher with the Arlington ISD. My wife is a photographer. We recently moved here. Within the past six months, I have witnessed a knife fight outside my apartment. There have been numerous armed robberies in our area. One night, some people drove past my car and hurled a bottle at it, right in front of me. Someday my wife and I would like to have children. Let me ask you a question: would YOU be willing to raise a family in my neighborhood?

At this moment, I don't care about the economy in Dallas. At this moment, I don't care about your smoking ban. At this moment, I don't care about the public school system. At this moment, I don't care about the Cowboy's football season. If the crime rate does not significantly drop by next election, my friends and I will vote againist you and make sure you never hold office in this town again. I understand crime is a complex problem with several factors involved, but you have the ability to take steps in making this city safer. I will support any bond proposal designed to decrease crime. I understand your responsibilities are great, but the people of Dallas will support you if you care for them in turn. I am sending similiar e-mails to members of our City Council and the police chief.

David Hopkins
Tom Barman (the mad genius behind my favorite band dEUS) has been very busy working on his first feature-length film ´Any Way The Wind Blows´. If the movie is anything like his music, no one will be prepared for what he creates.
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