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September 8, 2014 / admin

2014 NFL Season Preview with Johnny Useldinger and Doug Ramsey

nflThe 2014 NFL season is just underway, but that doesn’t mean it’s too late gain some valuable insight as to what you can expect from the year in football. We were pleased to have longtime San Francisco 49er fan Johnny Useldinger and supercharged San Diego Charger fan Doug Ramsey join us to break down the strengths and weaknesses of each team division by division and give us their Super Bowl picks.

There’s some good old-fashioned Seahawk fan bashing, doubting of RG III and Ben Roethlisberger and the Oakland Raiders are dismissed altogether.

We also discuss the league’s crackdown on illegal hits, their culpability in the matter of CTE and player safety and if/how the game will change 20 years down the road.

Bonus: When Jason drinks during the show, he gets his McCowns confused!

For more insight and opinions from Johnny and Doug, you can follow them on Twitter @dingerfergus and @Drams40. They each tweet about once a year.

September 2, 2014 / admin

Comedians Todd Armstrong and Jason Traeger

“We’re all just friends here. Until you prove otherwise, you’re my friends.”Jason Traeger

It’s with this mindset that Jason Traeger takes the stage to perform at the some of the seemingly endless standup comedy venues in Portland. But Jason’s comedy act, cerebral as it is silly, is merely one facet of his artistic life that he shares with his friends: Jason is also an accomplished musician, painter and photographer.

Fellow comedian Todd Armstrong’s path to the standup stage was somewhat circuitous; the one-time aspiring teacher first intended to use comedy as a way of curing his fear of speaking, but he ended up becoming the “maestro of his own anxiety” by falling in love with the art form and performing non-stop.

Jason and Todd are two of Portland’s most recognizable comedians; Jason being the co-host, with Brandy Feit, of the Comedy & Cocktails show at New Deal Distillery the second Friday of every month and Todd being the host of Permanent Comedy, a monthly webseries which combines a standup show and interviews with comedians as they receive a new tattoo.

Todd 1We had an intimate and far-reaching conversation with Jason and Todd about their different approaches to comedy, the idea of Portland as a blue-collar town, addiction, depression and psychedelic drugs.

For more on their comedy and upcoming appearances, check out Todd’s website and Jason’s Tumblr page and follow them on Twitter @armTODDstrong and @jasontraeger.

August 15, 2014 / admin

Artist Devon Devereaux

The only Devonhorrifying thing about this episode is how short it was… we could have talked with Devon Devereaux for days!

Devon is the co-creator of the “not for children” children’s book The Littlest Bitch, written by David Quinn and Michael Davis, published by Sellers Books. Devon is also the driving force behind Tales of Hot Rod Horror, the auto-themed horror anthology featuring stories from creators such as Rick Geary, David Quinn and Adam Gallardo. And his list of clients includes Disney, Slave Labor Graphics, Portland Mercury, Willamette Week, and the HP Lovecraft Film Festival. Devon’s latest project is Josh Lobster, written by the late Chris Reilly, which is a tale of mystery, suspense and marine life featuring a crustacean-limbed protagonist who is more than what he seems.

We had a fun conversation with Devon about the influence of the Twilight Zone, Alfred Hitchcock and Stephen King on his work, what appeals to him about the art of hot rod car culture and how the new generation of horror filmmakers succeeds/fails.

JoshWe also discuss Devon’s Kickstarter campaign for Josh Lobster, which is now in its final days, and what it is about crowd-source funding that works for him.

To help put Devon’s Josh Lobster Kickstarter campaign over the top, check it out here.

And for more on Devon’s work, check out his website and follow him on Twitter @devondevereaux.

August 8, 2014 / admin

Comedian Andie Main and cartoonist Carolyn Main of Picture This!

Sisters are indeed doin’ it for themselves… and nobodyAndie-Main does it quite like sisters Andie and Carolyn Main. These two loveable weirdos have been standing on their own two feet and ringing on their own bells for a while now: Andie in the world of stand-up comedy (performing with such national headliners as T.J. Miller, David Huntsberger and Jackie Kashian and appearing in such festivals as All Jane, No Dick) and Carolyn in the world of comics and illustration (creating the web comic strip Sex Wizards and the Nintendo-themed joke book, the 8 Bit Groan Zone). Together, they’ll be performing every second Friday in the comedy show Picture This!, which pairs a comedian with an artist who draws their punchlines live on stage.

Andie joined us to talk about why she didn’t care about school, why she was determined not to let her rare spinal condition keep her down and how punk rock influenced her comedy.

carolWe also talked with Carolyn about how drawing in front of a live audience keeps her on her toes and she reminded us what extremes she’ll go to defend Billy Joel.

The next Picture This! show is Friday August 8th at 10pm at the Curious Comedy Theater, and will feature Andie and Carolyn, along with artists Shane Hosea, Ryan Tanner-Alexander and Hutch Harris from The Thermals and comedians Barbara Holm, Dylan Reiff, Curtis Cook, Joann Schinderle and Amy Miller. Toilet Face will not be there. You can get tickets here.

For more on Andie and Carolyn’s work, check out Andie’s tumblr and Carolyn’s website, and you also follow them on Twitter @andiemain and @carolynmain.

August 6, 2014 / admin

Episode 100 – Funemployment Radio Network Family Game Night

Karl Jason Show-0242


Well, folks… this episode is delivered to you straight from the It Seemed Like a Good Idea At the Time Dept. When we were thinking of unique ways to celebrate our 100th episode, we thought “why not bring on all the hosts of our brother and sister shows on the Funemployment Radio Network and pit them against one another in a trivia battle royale where one champion would be crowned?” This episode is why not.

The guests were divided into teams:

Team Whores of Water Deep

Team You Have to Listen to the Episode to Find Out What Their Name Was

  • Karl Jason Show-0177


    Mikey Nielsen co-host of Chronicles of the Nerds,
    Saturdays, 10:30am – 11:30am @chroniclesofthe

  • Dan Clark Pirate and co-host of Geek in the City @pdxyar
  • Comedian Adam Pasi not on the network, but we were glad to have him @adampasi
  • Denise Espinoza aka Beanerita, host of the Drunk Game of Thrones podcast, which you can listen to here. @beanerita

And we were also joined by our first ever guest artist/photographer Thomas Malcolm Cook of Phototainment, who was kind enough to document the event (@phototainment).

Karl Jason Show-0266


What was meant to be a fun night of friendly trivia competition on the subjects of sports, movies, nerd & pop culture and the Funemployment Radio Network itself almost instantly devolved into a morass of chest-thumping, yelling, swearing, scoring controversies, race-baiting, insults and binge drinking. Through it all, one FER Network star outshone the rest and literally took home the blue ribbon.

It was a nerve-wracking, embarrassing, brain-scalding evening… and we hope we have another opportunity to do it again soon.

For the full schedule of Funemployment Radio Network shows, check out the FER website and find out how you can subscribe and support great podcasting.

Thank you to all of the FER Network hosts for joining us, thank you to all of our past guests over the years for 100 great episodes and THANK YOU especially to all of our great listeners!

P.S. – If you’re a sex worker, you have absolutely nothing to fear from Jason, despite what you hear ad nauseam from our disrespectful guests in this episode.


August 3, 2014 / admin

Comedians Adam Pasi and Nariko Ott

The spirit of competition was alive and wellAdam Pasi in the studio on this episode, which was probably our second best episode ever! Fresh off of his second-place finish in Helium Comedy Club’s Funniest Person in Portland contest, Adam Pasi joined us to talk about his experiences as a contestant and to remind fellow comedian Nariko Ott that he didn’t make the finals (which goes to show comedy competitions are inhereNariko Ottntly ridiculous). Contests aside, Adam and Nariko were without a doubt two of our favorite comedians in town going into the episode, and after joining us even more so.

We talked with Adam and Nariko about the origins of their comedy, what’s great about the Portland comedy scene and the analytical process they go through when developing their material.

Jason also asks Adam and Nariko for advice on how to “man up”… and he will never, ever do that again.

For more on Adam and Nariko’s comedy and to find out where/when you can see them live, follow them on Twitter @adampasi and @narikoott. And check out Nariko’s 4pm Breakfast videos on YouTube.

August 3, 2014 / admin

Joe Biel of Microcosm Publishing

Joe BielBooks, bikes and doing it yourself… These are some of the tentpoles on which Portland’s culture is based and the foundation on which our guest in this episode has built his life.

Joe Biel is the founder of Microcosm Publishing, a small, independent publisher located in Portland, that since its birth in 1996 has amassed a giant catalog of titles. Microcosm’s publications run the gamut from books about feminism, punk rock, the CIA, graphic novels, self-defense, vegan cooking, adult-oriented coloring books and more. Joe is also a filmmaker, whose work includes the documentaries $100 & A T-Shirt and Aftermass: Bicycling in a Post-Critical Mass Portland.

We talked with Joe about how he fell in love with ‘zines through the punk music scene, why he left the smoking remains of his life in Cleveland behind to come to Portland and start Microcosm and how Portland’s police department didn’t exactly greet the early days of the city’s pro-bike movement with open arms.

We also talked with Joe about the challenges one faces when their personal and professional conduct is placed under a public microscope.

For more about Joe and Microcosm Publishing and to peruse their catalog, check out the Microcosm website. And you can follow Joe on Twitter @beaugheale.

August 3, 2014 / admin

Dylan Meconis & Katie Lane

Dylan KatieOur hope is that if we continue to talk to awesome, smart people on the show, some of their awesome, smartness will rub off on us. So far, no such luck, but we gave it a whirl once more in this episode with creative power couple Dylan Meconis and Katie Lane.

Dylan is a cartoonist, writer and illustrator whose work includes the web comics Bite Me!, Family Man and the Eisner-nominated short story Outfoxed.

Katie Lane is an attorney who acts as a business counselor to creative people by providing legal services, private negotiation coaching and teaching negotiation seminars.

We talked with Dylan about her lack of childhood chums, what she digs so much about writing historical fiction and doesn’t dig so much about drawing it (sometimes).

We then talked with Katie about how she went from being a theater nerd to finding her true passion and what every creative person should know before they sign on any dotted line.

For more on Dylan’s fantastic work, check out her website… and if you’re a creative person, learn how you can get exactly what you deserve from your contract by contacting Katie at You can also follow them on Twitter @dmeconis and @_katie_lane.

July 21, 2014 / admin

Writer Phil Amara

imageWe’ve interviewed a lot of people from the world of comics, but with all due respect to our many talented guests, we’ve got nothing on Phil Amara. As a college radio show host, Phil interviewed the likes of Stan Lee, Jack Kirby, Moebius and many more, which further fueled his passion to break into comics.  He ultimately did break in: as a writer, co-creating titles such as The Nevermen and Sky Ape, and also as an editor for Tundra, Kitchen Sink Comics and Dark Horse Comics, where he worked on such titles as Star Wars, Aliens, Planet of the Apes, Terminator, Madman and Predator: Kindred (Shameless Plug, Pt. 1).

In more recent days, Phil’s work has been geared toward a younger audience: not only is he the author of the books So You Want to be a Comic Book Artist? and The Treehouse Heroes and the Forgotten Beast (illustrated by Alina Chau), but he is also now a teacher in the Boston area.

We talked with Phil about the influence of comics on his boyhood in Boston, what comic book editors can learn from and teach to creators and why creating heroes kids can relate to was so important him.

Phil also attempts to help Jason put his “career” as a comic book writer into simple and plain perspective. Key word: “attempts”.

You can find Phil on Facebook and his books on Amazon. And if you wanted to, you can find Predator: Kindred on Amazon as well (Shameless Plug, Pt. 2).

July 19, 2014 / admin

Writer/Publisher Chris Roberson

Chris Roberson on July 16, 2011When it comes to people that dig monkeys, there’s Jane Goodall, Fay Wray, Tarzan… and right up there among them is writer Chris Roberson, as we learned this episode. Chris’ work includes the novels Here, There & Everywhere, Set the Seas on Fire, The Dragon’s Nine Sons, and his work in comics includes his run on Superman, Cinderella: From Fabletown With Love,  and iZombie, which he co-created with artist Mike Allred and has been adapted into a TV series debuting on the CW Network next year. In 2012, he and his wife Alison Baker co-founded Monkeybrain Comics, a digital comic publisher that is now home to over fifty titles, including the Eisner Award-winning Bandette (created by Paul Tobin and Colleen Coover), the multiple Eisner Award-nominated High Crimes (created by Christopher Sebela and Ibrahim Moustafa) and his own title Edison Rex (illustrated by Dennis Culver).

Chris joined us to talk about how he grew up speaking “the native language of comics”, what’s great about Superman, not so great about DC and what inspired he and Alison to take comics to the next level with Monkeybrain.

Chris also shared with us how iZombie pulled his comics career off the ropes and vaulted him in the network TV arena.

For more on Chris and his work, you should check out the Monkeybrain Comics website about follow him on Twitter @chris_roberson.

July 1, 2014 / admin

Sculptor Randy Bowen

Randy-Bowen-01As we’ve said before, our show affords us the pleasure of speaking with impressive people who create great art out of nothing… and in some cases, they create whole careers out of nothing. Just such a person is Randy Bowen, founder of Bowen Designs, a company that’s become the gold standard in the industry of collectible sculpture. For 30 years, Bowen Designs has created classic statues and busts based on characters from Marvel, DC, Dark Horse, Disney, Star Wars, Aliens, Predator and more.

Randy joined us, along with his daughter Veronica, to talk about the influence comics, sci-fi and monster movies had on him as a kid, how he went from creating sculptures out of “garage kits” to become the best in his business, the collectible market and his interactions with famous folks such as Frank Frazetta and the cast of Seinfeld.

And to hear how Randy’s perspective on his achievements as an artist differs from Veronica’s was pretty cool. We’re also joined for a mercifully brief time by two other creepy kids that aren’t Randy’s.

For more on Randy and his work, check out the Bowen Designs website,  the Statue Marvels website and follow him on Twitter @randybowen1.