extreme wet makeover

The shoot for Extreme Home Makeover was fairly miserable. I knew this going in as the bus was being pelted with rain as soon as we left the UMN campus at 7:30 A.M. Upon our arrival we were scooted into a tent where we enjoyed a decent mini breakfast meal. Fun fact was that every […]


extreme home makeover

I need to post more! I have been in full band mode for the last 6 weeks. I’ve attended 4 games thus far (all of which we’ve won). Today we were in a farming community near Albert Lea, MN filming scenes for a December 2008 episode of ABC’s Extreme Home Makeover. It was raining on […]


the return to marching band

If you know me, you realize that I am not a typical 38 year old guy. I don’t choose to go down the beaten path that all others have taken. Why should I? It’s more fun if you run to the beat of your own drum. Why should I do what’s expected and predictable with […]


too tired to blog

It’s day 3 of Spat Camp. I’m sore and tired. The schedule starts up at 8:30 AM and goes through 9:30 PM with minimal breaks, so that’s my explanation for not really having enough time to properly blog. I’ve been taking notes, however, so during my next pause I’ll make an attempt at posting them. […]



I’m in a taxi headed out to the University of Minnesota campus where I will face one of life’s unanswered questions. Can I still march? No, seriously. That’s the question. Stay tuned and see.


quark on dvd! at long last!

I can’t believe that QUARK is finally coming to DVD. It only took 30 years. I suppose the recent success of GET SMART at the theaters has given SONY cause to look in their vaults for other Buck Henry classics. The little known series QUARK aired a mere eight episodes in 1978. I watched many […]


iphone 2.0 is here! sorta…

Exactly at the stroke of 8 AM this morning my copy of iTunes stopped telling me that an update wasn’t available. Sweet. It’s downloading right now. The speed is about 1 MB (megabyte) every 2 seconds with a 218.2 MB total download. Once the download is complete, the iPhone is backed up. You see — […]


the piano is gone :-(

My phone rang around noon yesterday. I recognized the number. I answered. Me: (spoken quickly) ”Thisismarkshields.” Constance: ”Mark, this is Constance from the leasing office.” Me: ”Hi!” Constance: ”They’re here.” Me: ”The new iPhones are here???” Constance: [long pause] ”No.” Me: ”No, wait, ABBA is here? Holy sh*t!” Constance: ”Mark, the people who own the […]


vhs tapes to digital video

The GFF is out of town in Nebraska so I’ve spent the July 4th long weekend trying to get every imaginable errand and task completed prior to her return. Also included in there is cleaning the house, the clothes, and the dog and not necessarily in that order. Chief among my distractions has been the […]