Things I care about (in no particular order)

Les Amis Fencing Club: I began fencing in college. After something of a lengthily break, I began a few years ago. Fencing requires quick reflexes, speed, and endurance, all of which I have in modest amounts. I have my moments though. I wrote an article about our fencing club in Buffalo Spree.    fencing
Buffalo Garden Walk: I garden. My wife and I have had a garden and pond on our tiny city property at 533 Auburn Ave. for many years, and we participate in the Buffalo Garden Walk. One of the gardens pictured on the Garden Walk website slide show is ours. I wrote about our garden in the article Saga of an Urban Oasis in Buffalo Spree.    garden-1 copy garden-1 copy
Skepticism, Rationalism, Humanism: I was probably born a skeptic. Fortunately for me, the Buffalo area is a hotbed of rational thinking, the international Center for Inquiry. CFI is a global federation committed to science, reason, free inquiry, secularism, and planetary ethics. Under this organization’s rather large umbrella is publishedFree Inquiry and Skeptical Inquirer, two of my favorite magazines.Here’s a statement on skepticism and my art I wrote for my exhibition at the CFI.

Magic (conjuring)
That’s right, pick a card, cups and balls, floating volunteers, fluttering doves, the whole bit. I was a semiprofessional magician for about fifteen years. Learned a lot about people. “Magic,” writes Jamy Ian Swiss, “has a great deal to do with deception: with how we are deceived in our lives, by others and by ourselves.” After seeing Pen and Teller in their original off-Broadway show, I quit performing. They were everything I wanted to be, but didn’t have time to become. I couldn’t do both art and magic while working a day job and raising a family. Art won out.

Before you forward the next email warning about marauding gangs, or fish that swim up penises, or gay Jesus films, please check with Snopes!

A great source for art and artists.
Talking Heads and David Byrne: Talking Heads provided the sound track for many of my earliest paintings. Talking Head lead singer and songwriter David Byrne not only continues to come out with magnificent music, but he’s also a fascinating visual artist and has a great on-line journal. I have a lot of musical interests, but I keep coming back to the head Head.
Prolonged Hacking and Gnawing: is Buffalo curator John Massier’s blog that contains an amazingly comprehensive listing of local art events, as well as assorted musings on a variety of subjects, cultural commentary, quotes, oddly spectacular video clips, and weekly vintage record album reviews.   
It was John’s idea to visit the Lucy-Desi Museum
Julian Montague: Julian is one of many Buffalo artists doing interesting cutting edge art. I like his website.     
Wall Drug: I haven’t been to Wall Drug since I was 16, but I will never forget this monument to American Kitsch. Beautiful. I hope to go back one day.     
James Randy: If you don’t know the Amazing Randy, you should. The guy has spent the better part of his life debunking supernatural claptrap of all kinds. A magician and skeptic, Randy demystifies psychics, medical frauds, televangelists, diviners and others. He has a standing offer of a million dollar reward for proof of the supernatural under scientific controls.    
Marcel Duchamp People often ask what artists have influenced me. That’s a hard question to answer because so many have had some impact. You might not expect it from looking at my work but Duchamp is probably my biggest single influence. He’s probably most artist’s single greatest influence, even if they don’t know it. So many of his works have become iconic, and his ideas shaped the landscape of contemporary art. This site gives a good linear overview of his life’s work: Making Sense of Marcel Duchamp (as if).
Assorted other things:  secular ethics, psychics, the paranormal, the scientific method, freethought, Fluxus, artificial inelegance, cults, televangelism, con games, sideshow freaks, kitsch, classicism,modernism, postmodernism, sci-fi, evolution, dada, quantum physics,hotforwords, urban legends, music (all kinds), garden ponds, brain teasers, mentalism, art books, secular humanism, atheism, movies, (real) martinis, roadside attractions, pop star biographies, politics, fishing, comics.