Entries tagged with “takeshi”.

I have reached a new plateau in my semi-fame. This is even better than when a kid put my photo on his birthday cake.  I got a facebook message and a photo text telling me about it last night.  My buddies Takeshi, Jack Ringca, and Drew Tetz are on the road right now with the Duncan Heritage Tour and yesterday a kid showed up to their demo in Brookfield WI in his Halloween costume, dressed as me.  Fake glasses, cool-guy shirt, hat, and a markered-in soul-patch beard to boot.  Just to make sure everyone knew who he was, he was wearing my current trading card like a name tag.  Awesome.  I am so honored.

He saw me at the Wisconsin State Fair this summer, and has gotten really into yo-yos lately.  Apparently I gave him a trading card at the fair.  Here is the photo he was working from:

The back of my new trading card:

and here is the front:

Both of these videos are a collaboration between me and Takeshi Kamisato.  I was the idea man, camera man, and robot wrangler, plus I did some initial editing.  Takeshi came in with his powerful editing skills and made them good.

No!  Don’t Do It! (Robot Chronicles part 2)


Searching for Something (Robot Chronicles part 3)

There is still one more part to come.  With a little luck, I’ll finish it in the next few days.

Why robots?  Aside from the fact that robots are AWESOME, a while back I had the burning desire to make something.  I had only a limited workshop and no big plan , but when I found cheap wind-up robots I knew I was onto something.  I bought a whole bunch of them, and started playing around.  I posted the first video a little over a year ago, then sent off a small sculpture to a show made up of art made by yo-yo players at the Steve Brown Gallery.  I’ve had the footage for these two videos for a while, but just got back to them.

Eye Robot.  Get it?  When he walks, the yo-yo bounces.

That’s right!  Not only is my new trading card out, but it has a SUPER-AWESOME photo on the front taken by the world famous yo-yo master Raphael Matsunaga, aka: Red.  This photo was taken in Takeshi’s living room while Duncan was shooting some new instructional video with Raphael and Takeshi as well as Jack Ringca, Brandon Jackson, Drew Tetz, and Hank Freeman.  It was fun.  I love pictures of me.

This year Takeshi scored an amazing hook-up for the Indy State contest: it will be held at the Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art.  Sept 22nd, 10-5pm.  More info here.

Also, with a little luck, we will have a trial run for the set-up and scoring of the Ultimate Battle Top Championships of the Universe too.  The actual contest will be at the National Yo-yo Contest in Chico CA in October, but we have to make sure that it’s going to be a good event first.

I have been gathering footage, and mulling over ideas for this project for years.  Many of my performer friends have DVDs that they sell after their shows.  I have wanted to make one for years, but having the high standards that I do, I wanted to make a really high-quality DVD so it took a while to gather enough footage and get my ideas together.  I’m really excited about what we’ve been working on so far.  The whole thing will be bonus footage.  There are plenty of opportunities to see my show, and lots of people have seen it, but if you buy the DVD, you will get nothin’ but EXTRAS!  There will be footage of me performing bits that I don’t do very often, or in some cases have only done once;  Takeshi is working on a mini-documentary that will incorporate news footage, and interviews with friends and family; and there will be tutorial videos on how to do both yo-yo and spin-top tricks.  There will even be a section with really old-school footage, including a short documentary that my brother made back in the early 90s called “The Gemini’s Big Gig” from when Matt Henry and I used to perform together as The Gemini Jugglers.

Takeshi and I shot a bunch of footage on Thursday, and we will shoot some more in a just over a week after I get back from the IJA juggling festival in Winson-Salem NC.  The whole thing might be finished in a month, but we’ll see.

It seems that no matter where I move I end up getting involved in organizing something that is juggling or yo-yo related. I’m not complaining, it’s just what happens. At the moment I’m helping my buddy Takeshi organize the Indiana State Yo-yo Contest. I’m really looking forward to it, it should be a blast. If you want more info check out the website: http://indianastates.newschool101.com/

This morning I got up early to take my Robot Car (aka: my 2004 Toyota Prius hybrid) to the mechanic, and as soon as I got home I went into my garage to work on my family’s 1930 Model A Ford. I love the contrast.

Here’s a picture of my Grandpa, Mac McBride, in the car in September of 1985, just after he got it restored.


Yo-yos are awesome.  I’m hanging out in Cleveland Heights Ohio after finishing the yo-yo contest today.  It was fun.  I helped judge the Sport Ladder portion of the contest and ran the music for all the freestyle competitors.  This is the contest run by Steve Brown, National Yo-yo Master.  The big plans for tonight are hanging-out, yo-yoing and eating pizza.  Should be a great night.  Tomorrow we barbeque.

Ate breakfast (Apple Jacks cereal… I’m not proud). Went to dog park. Took dog home, went to get oil changed and steering column recall done on Prius. Brought Taco Bell to Lenore at work. Forgot guacamole. Went to Takeshi’s house. Talked about his yo-yo DVD project. Painted some yo-yos. Came home. Fed and walked the dog. Ate dinner. Watched TV. Brushed teeth (and flossed). Worked on websites. Quick shower and reading of book on vaudeville coming up… then bed. Big day.

My dog loves to chase deer.  Sometimes it has been a bit of a problem.  Today on our walk in a forested area he chased one right AT me.  It passed within 8 feet of me.  My thought process went something like, “Oh here comes Vader (he’s about the same color as deer)… wow, he’s going really fast… wow, he’s bigger than usual… HOLY CRAP! THAT’S NOT MY DOG!”  About a minute later Vader trotted up very intently, and I managed to convince him that he had already lost his prey.

Final game of the World Cup today.  Holy head-butt Batman!  That was nasty.

A bunch of the yo-yo guys came to juggling practice today, so no surprise, I didn’t juggle much.  As soon as anyone starts thowing a top around I’m done with whatever I was doing.  Tops are SO awesome.