I recommend looking at the pictures from the bottom up because I wrote the captions in that order and it will make more sense. Treat this as a book. Read it from the beginning and you don't have to finish it all in one sitting. The reason why I have the oldest ones at the bottom of the page is because I want the most recent pictures at the top for future updates. As of now it's only pictures of my life up until 2014.
This picture is very funny to me. This is at Waterworks Mall, if you know where that is. Ricky & I went there because we went to Burgatory and probably TJ Maxx/Marshalls because that was tradition between us and they were so close to each other in that mall. This is also a product of a bored selfie because we were waiting for my parents to be done shopping because they drove us because I only had my permit at the time because I took a long time to take my drivers test because I don't know why okay, get off my back! Sorry about that. I think we both said things we didn't mean and I would appreciate it if we could just move on. Now, Ricky & I were just talking by the car and I wanted to sit down and so I sat on top of the car. Ricky must have seen a picture in that so we discussed what the best pose would be and decided on this, snapped it, and he slapped a filter on there. Then Ricky came up with the caption "Movement."(this was back when "movement" wasn't overused by wannabe gangsters&rappers&whitekids) and I loved that so I used it. Some people on Instagram thought it was a sneak peak of an album cover and it could have been, but it wasn't. It didn't even cross my mind at the time really. But later when I was thinking of the design of "Icebergs", I thought of this picture and the caption and wanted to incorporate "Movement" in it as a nod to the people that knew about this picture to show that I cared even though they probably didn't even care enough to notice.
This is one of my favorite pictures of all time. It's cute, it's funny, it's a pre-prime creative genius, it has it all. I would love to get in contact with those two girls and get the backstory and stuff. I think this is college age Bino, but I wouldn't be surprised if this was high school even.
I think this picture is from the last night we were in Myrtle when we went to the boardwalk. We got to the car before my parents did and we were bored so we took a selfie. I'm pretty in love with my outfit that day. I've got a polo shirt on with a zipper instead of buttons at the top and a floral polo bucket hat on. I don't remember what I had on below that, but even if I was naked it's still one of my favorite outfits I've ever worn.
This is us during mini golfing and we're not even flexing. I started to make more sense fashion-wise as the week went on because I wanted to prove to the people I came with (and myself) that I still knew how clothes worked.
It really bothers me how if we would have just rotated like 45° it would have been 100% better picture because we would have been in the light, but I didn't know about lighting yet.
Here's an example of my lack care for social norms and what you SHOULD (Bonnie Klopfer reference) wear. Let's break it down, shall we? I'm wearing a striped shirt with shorts that have some sort of tribal looking pattern on there and a hat that not only has stripes, but also is 4 times too small for me. It's a fitted hat that my dad bought for me one night at a Pirate game when I was like 11 or something and it was small on me then, but I wanted it so bad I didn't even care. Also if you want a funnier caption for this picture, creep on my Instagram a little bit because it's there. This picture is also funny because Rass never finishes his food and always gets a box and for some reason didn't think of setting it down for a picture that is otherwise flawless (obviously kidding)
This is a picture I took on the first day of being on the Myrtle trip. The first day of a trip is always the worst because you're in an unfamiliar place and you're usually tired from traveling and whatnot. Rass pointed that out to me and I've been stealing that opinion for years because it's still true. Anyways, this is something stupid I did because I thought it was funny to joke about because, if you can't tell, it's a snapchat emoji and not an actual giant pill I'm bragging that I'm about to swallow. I was pretty darn happy to wear a bucket hat at the beach. Half the fun of the beach to me is the fashion of short shorts and Hawaiian shirts and the freedom of wearing something that possibly looks preposterous, but not caring because you're on vacation and it's comfortable.
This was something I saw in a bathroom stall in who knows where, USA on the road trip to Myrtle and I thought it was a funny thing to see among trucker jokes and random phone numbers for a "good time".
This was the first sign(pun intended) that this place was going to be amazing and insanely expensive haha. The campus is beautiful and has what seemed to be 100 little things (and big) about it that made it better than all the other schools extracurricularly. I wanted to go there so bad, but it was like $40,000 a year and there was no way that was happening. Looking back now(I'm writing this at the end of my freshmen year at Liberty), I probably would have coasted through academically with all the stuff to do on campus and fostered a bad work ethic because of it. I probably would have hated it there too though because most of all the people there are going to be frat boys or at the very least rich kids that I hate. But at the same time, I don't really hangout with anyone here either so at least I would have a better time by myself there probably. I don't know. There's really no way to know if you made the right choices in life, you only can know how you ended up.
Look how cute this is. This is Jash & Rass and we're in a hotel because we were on our way to Myrtle Beach for vacation. Rass was playing Clash of Clans in this picture (an app that was immensely popular and addicting at the time). We made a pit stop at High Point University for a college visit and this is the hotel near the school. More pictures of this trip will come in the immediate future.
This is amazing because I know Ricky would hate this picture and rightfully so. This was during his identity crisis that lasted a long time. This is a weird mashup of a bunch of stuff and I will help you out because it's hard to know what to do with this picture. First, we'll start with the beatdown plain grey shorts. Next, he has a not bad white boy Levi's shirt. Another thing is he has crappy Five Below-like headphones. Here's the grand finale; that thing on his head is a Popeye shirt that I gave to him to wear on his torso, but he cut up to put on his head to make his hair have waves. If you don't know, white people can't get waves, but he wore that stupid homemade du rag any and all the time he was at home for months and his hair looked exactly the same. To top it all off he raised his arm, looked down dramatically and snapped a pic of all this because he thought he was sick. smh.
Remember I said to remember these shorts all the way back at the "Shower Florts" picture? I finally bought them! Doesn't that feel nice that loose end finally got tied together? Anyways, this is a picture that I sent to a girl named Sheen because we both love floral things. I wore all my floral things, at that time, because it looked funny and thought she would appreciate it. I never wore this particular outfit in public (unfortunately), but it does now live in infamy here on this website that no one will read. Ah.
Ricky actually put this picture on rackleson and captioned it "I get money like I get ladies #mediumrare"
This was in the porta potty at camp. The sign behind me reminded me of another weird/funny note that they put on videotapes. I sent this to Ricky because it seemed like our humor. This always makes me laugh when I see this picture. My hair looks extra interesting in this too because it looks frizzy, but also it's swooshy on the right there.
Hahahahahaha I took this picture from my bottom bunk (can we agree that top bunks are overrated?) at Pine Valley and I guess I felt overwhelmed, tired, etc... so I took this picture to show and remember what the cabin looked like. The Maintenance cabin is for all the "Mighty Maintenance Men", as they call them at PV, and it was kinda terrible because it's like half finished, spray painted, and always has miscellaneous articles of clothing on the floor or hanging on the ceiling. Not to mention all the things that go along with virtually any cabin like bugs, dirt and it being too hot. I went back in 2017 and got to see inside it again and it's way nicer now! What the heck? It's not like it's the W now or anything, but it's more spacious and has a carpet and everything. Oh well
This happened to my friend Alex's car while we were in it. He is one of the three bachelors from a previous picture: "Murder Mystery Play". We were just cruising around just for something to do. We were stopped at a red light and we just got slammed by some lady. You can see the white line we were parallel to before she ran into us right under the cop's foot. I don't even remember what her explanation was. I think it was something like she just came from eye surgery and she dropped a CD on the floor and took her fresh-out-of-surgery eyes off the road to promptly run into us. That's why ya get an iPod, so ya don't have to crash into kids #AppleSavesLives haha. She kinda seemed out of it, so I don't know if she was still drugged out or what, but that was an interesting day.
Here I go again with my intentionally super awkward pose for a picture to cover up my unintentional awkwardness. I thought it would be funny to look like a person that wasn't supposed to be in the picture and just staring at something really hard *pauses for laughter but hears crickets instead*. This was at Kennywood Park with some of the Pine Valley crew.
This picture is on the way back from Trip Day on a Pine Valley bus. We go to a lake and have a picnic and stuff there. It can be really fun, but mostly exahusting as you can see. The most exhausting part to me is to keep track of all your campers because kids are swimming, canoeing, playing in the grass, in the bathroom and on a pontoon boat, so it's impossible to know where they are all at once, but it's your fault if they get lost or run away. And it's exhausting for the kids because they are running around doing all those things and trying to get lost haha just kidding. Anyways, this is just a cute picture as a result of Trip Day haha.
This was one of those summer nights when you just sit outside and have deep talks (if only we recorded it for a podcast). We were sitting on Ricky's driveway and I think he was mad about something stupid. I knew it was one of those "mad"s that he would get over really quickly because it wasn't actually a big deal, so I was just trying to speed up the process of him getting over it so I took this picture. I think it actually initially made him a little more mad, but then he realized how stupid it was to be mad. That's how I remember and interpret this picture. Also, that face I drew looks really funny to me.
This is a thing we still do to this day (why? I do not know, other than it is funny to us). We usually send a snapchat of an 18th or 19th century number with a picture of our feet while we're sitting on the toilet, so you'll see a collage of that later I'm sure. Also, I think he was texting back about how I told him you could only shower once a week at Pine Valley if you're a counselor haha.
Right before this my family and I took a tour of Moody Bible Institute, which was why we took the trip in the first place (more on Moody to come in future pictures). Then we walked a few blocks to go to the famous Lou Malnati's for their deep dish pizza and it was very very good. I made this beautiful face in this picture because "Lou Malnati" sounds like "Illuminati" and that's my scared face I guess. Also, I didn't notice this until after we took the picture, but for some reason it says "NanaWall" on the left side of the picture. "Nana" was a pretty prevalent ad-lib of Chance's at the time, so that was just a weird serendipitous Chance connection.
We also went to a Second City show and it was good, but it had a weird not very subtle undertone of atheism. We probably should have known because it was called "The Apes of Wrath", but I thought it was just a parody title and it didn't really mean anything. I wish I wrote down the people that were in it in case any of them got famous because that would be cool. I remember looking at the street the theater was on and thinking about all the great comedians that devoted their lives to comedy that walked the same cement and it was a weird feeling.
For some reason I thought it would be funny to look like I was peeing into a fountain and it is! I look so hot in that fricken sweatshirt, but it was the Acid Rap sweatshirt that I told you about before and I needed to rep Chance in his own city. It was so cool being there knowing Chance roamed those same streets that sculpted him into what he is today. I felt like I could feel his energy as soon as I entered the city limits. This all sounds very lame and whatnot, but thank goodness I knew he wasn't actually there and was at some festival because I would've been looking for him around every corner and it would have ruined my trip haha. We did drive by his old high school, Jones College Prep, but there was construction outside of it so I couldn't even get a good look at it. Also, he hadn't rep'd 79th street so hard at that point, so I didn't know that was his home street or else I would have wanted to go there. I hope to go back to Chicago sometime and do a self-guided Chance tour haha.
I never really got to showcase this picture before and this is why you get yourself a website so you can do stuff like this. This is the picture you never knew that you needed. I'm obviously overselling this picture and I don't know why I think it's so funny, but it says no smoking and someone put a sticker that says "kush" on it.
This is from my first trip to Chicago. This is a panoramic of Wrigley Field from where I was sitting. The Cubs were playing the Pirates, which was really cool. Some of you know that this is a very historical sports landmark and it was really cool to be there in person.
Here's a juice box lookin all pretty and sweaty. There was nothing like downing a cold apple juice box during a wet hot American summer day at Pine Valley. PV Bible Camp "is a place where children who cannot typically afford summer camp can experience real life change." I worked there for the summer of 2014, 2015 & 2017. I love it there. The people there is what makes it so great. They are always looking for counselors (male counselors especially), so feel free to go to pinevalleycamp.com and check it out.
This is a horribly blurry picture of me in the yearbook because I had to take the picture of someone else's on the bus because my mom didn't want to buy yearbooks for me for some reason. Anyways, one day Ricky and I were sitting at lunch minding our own bidness and two girls from the yearbook committee came up to us and asked what this ink blot looked like and I said "it looks like a kitten and a cyclops drowning in despair" just to say something not boring and it made it into the yearbook somehow.
This was right before Chance threw out the first pitch at a White Sox game. I think this is a really cool looking picture with him throwing up the ball and the jersey and everything. I believe this was around the time that he asked the White Sox to be their official spokesperson because he wore that hat all the time and everywhere, but they said no and offered him to do the first pitch instead. So in other words, he pitched to them and they pitched that he would pitch instead.
This is funny to me because life can be really crazy a lot of the time. First of all, it was kind of by chance that I was at the Pirate game at all. A kid that I didn't really know well asked me to be a part of a thing that he put together that took senior citizen veterans to a Pirate game. I either said no initially or wanted to because I didn't know him that well and plus old people tweak me out a little bit. I don't know why exactly. I guess because you never know how much they're mentally there and if they'll remember you etc... It's a similar feeling to talking to a drunk or high person because you don't know if they're going to remember that you even talked the next day and that's too futile for me to care to do. Also, I want to ask them questions about the old days, but I'm afraid I'm going to get a weird answer that you seriously question of how true it is or something else weird like that. For me too, it feels like I'm taking time away from them and I know they don't have a lot left... I don't know it's a lot of weird stuff. Anyway, my general rule is to do something unless you have something else planned first and not just because you don't want to, which seems like a no-brainer, but it can be harder than it sounds. I didn't have anything else planned that day, so I went and the veteran they assigned me to was quiet and sweet and he was fine. When we got there, I happened to see a girl, Torrey (second from right), that's in one of my classes and sat with for a time. I remember she got more excited that I would have imagined and we hugged and got a picture which was cool. The girl on the second from the left, Caitlin, put this picture on her Instagram which is always fun for cross promotion and whatnot, but wasn't a huge deal at the time because I didn't know her that well. About a year later, she got insanely attractive. She must have just been a late bloomer, but she bloomed with vengeance. I mean that in the best way by the way. No passive aggressiveness or whatever. Heck we're all waiting on me to hit my bloom still. I cover up the fact that I haven't bloomed yet with hair. Has anyone bloomed after 20? Anyway, she later deleted this picture because I guess she didn't think this memory was important enough for her to remember (a little passive aggressiveness there haha). After she "bloomed" (I don't know how else to say it other than "after she got insanely hot," but bloomed sounds classier), she was dropping gem after gem on Instagram and I felt compelled to say something so as the gentleman I am, I slid into her DMs. Sometimes certain girls hit you so hard in a visceral way and you can't explain it, but you feel like you have to let them know how gut punchingly hot they are. I haven't figured out exactly why we have that urge to tell them what they probably already know anyway; that they are attractive to the opposite sex, but it's what we do. I think it's okay to do that, but a lot of guys don't bypass their tiny penis brain and they might as well type out the message with their penis because it's so clear that they have an end goal in mind that is different than just "I want this person to know someone feels this way about them". Anyways, I will keep you in suspense no longer, here is what I sent her: "Holy crap. I'm not usually one to slide into DMs or anything like that, but I would feel remiss if I didn't tell you. You literally take my breath away when I see your Instagram pictures sometimes. I'm not trying to pull any tricks or anything I just wanted to let you know that." I should tell you that I do slide into DMs all the time now (mostly friends because it's more convenient than texting sometimes), but at the time it was absolutely true. Those are some of many reasons why life is crazy and I have another example of it concerning Torrey in a future picture.
Wow, I debated even putting this picture up because I didn't think I had anything to say about it, but it ended up being one of my longer ones haha just another example of life being crazy.
This is what one of my neighbors, Emily, drew on the bottom of my shoe on the bus one day. You can still see some of it to this day. As you can see, the name "TÉM" is still alive and well at this point.
When the HV were AC and the glasses were protective.
This is Ricky at A.W. Beattie when he was going there for HVAC because his dad owns a HVAC business, but he ended up not wanting to pursue that. I don't know about other schools, but where we went it was looked down upon if you went to a tech school because it usually indicated that you couldn't handle being a student, so you go to a "fake school". In reality, it was probably smart for those people to do that because they weren't going to college and needed that training anyway. But the type of person that went there was wack.
This is a snapshot of an article that one of Donald's closest friends, Fam, wrote and I think it's really telling to what kind of artist Donald is. I think any artist's art that brings someone to tears and takes you through space & time is magical.
This was at a much needed catchup sesh at Jash's house with Rass. The 3 of us hadn't seen each other in a while, but they just got done with school for the summer so Jash decided to have a bonfire with us. I remember we stayed really late on a Sunday right after I had youth group and I had school the next morning, but it was worth it. I'm really bad at making fires, so my contribution was the paper stuck on top of a stick if you look closely.
I think this perfectly describes Chance specifically, but also everyone in general. People have so many dimensions that no matter how good of values and intentions they have, they will still be hypocrites at some point or in some aspects of their life and that's just because sin is real. You can't really get too upset with them because most likely if you confront them about it, they will admit that they're wrong and that they are working on it, but can't bring themselves to shake the habit. So I think we (me) should be patient with people. This is something that I have been slowly realizing through podcasts mainly; both listening to them and conducting my own.
I screenshotted this to remind myself to get one of these breakfast taco things someday and I did and it was very good. Say what you want about Taco Bell, but they are innovative and are constantly putting new things on the menu and I respect that. There's only so much you can do with beans, cheese and meat, but they find a way haha. Also, they don't take themselves so seriously on social media as they shouldn't. They take a page out of Chance The Rapper handbook and are "just havin fun wit it"
I was completely obsessed with roscoe's wetsuit at this time. We had to make a lil boat for my tech ed class and we got to decorate it however we wanted. Obviously, I chose this way. It was interesting to me how we did it. First, we had to spray paint it a solid base color (black) and then I had to cut out tape with a X-Acto knife to spell out "roscoe's wetsuit" to tape it onto the boat. Then you spray painted it again with a different color (red) and took the tape of and... ta-dah! #roscoeswetsuit
This is when Ricky and I went to Steak 'n Shake. Steak 'n Shake is kind of a classic for us because his older brother brought us there when we were in 8th grade (I think. it was definitely before high school) and I ordered no cheese on my burger and his brother said "no cheese? so how long have you been a part of the Taliban?" hahaha so ever since then it's been a classic. Also, I love the joke format of "I'd like to____ your _____"
When the penders were sus and the black Apples were no casa. (this is a format of joke that we originated on the old rackelson account. the format is "when the ___ were ___ and the ___ were ___") Now that you understand the format, I'll breakdown the content. "penders" are short for suspenders and "sus" is short for suspect or suspicious, so I just took the "sus" in suspenders and moved it to the second slot in the format to mean something else. The second half is even more confusing if you can believe it. Ricky's dad used to point out people that had no case on their phone. He thought they were suckers because inevitably they would break it. Instead of saying "black iPhone, no case", he would say "black Apple, no casa". So that should explain the first sentence in this dissertation. Anyway, this is another great pic o' Rick. He sent this to me before a funeral and it almost made up for him leaving me to fend for myself at school. This was at a time when he was really into cigarettes, which sucked (no pun intended), but he thankfully doesn't do it anymore.
I hate this picture. I only took it ironically because I hate when people do this and the type of person that does this, but I still hate this picture. I'm only putting it on here because I feel like I would be lying somehow if I didn't put this up and also Rass is in the far right with a green shirt. He's almost bald in this picture because he just shaved his head. He did this charity thing every year with his fraternity where whoever paid the most got to cut someone's hair however they wanted, so after that he had to shave it completely so he wouldn't look like a silly face.
I'm so glad I snapped a picture of this because it reminds me of a story that I completely forgot about and I bet Ricky did too. So, Ricky and I were walking together between classes and I was throwing my water bottle up and catching it for no reason other than it was something to do while we walked and talked. And then Ricky thought it was a good idea to smack it out of the air while we were walking down the stairs. Subsequently, it hit some girl right in the face in front of everyone there. Hahahahaha oh my gosh I'm reliving it and it is just as funny as it was when it happened. If I was the one who did it I would be horrified like I'm sure Ricky is if he ever reads this, but I wasn't so I'm gonna laugh at it hahaha. Anyway, I didn't pick up the bottle because I thought it would be an admission of guilt to some degree because people would have thought it was me that hit her so I went thirsty the rest of the day. I went thirsty until, that is, I returned to the scene of the crime later that day to retrieve my watered bottle. Then I sent this picture to Ricky to make him feel bad again because he really did feel bad. I don't even think he said "I'm sorry" because he was so shocked that actually happened and he just wanted to get out of there because he was so embarrassed and felt so bad. I can't imagine how that girl must have felt. Sitting there in her next class with a watermark on her face and how she just had to pretend like it didn't happen, oh my gosh that is priceless.
I only share this photo with you guys because we're all friends here. I had forgotten this photo even existed at this point, but the beauty and pain of life is that even if you forget about something, it still happened. Anyways, this girl put this picture on Instagram and I was shocked to see this as I scrolled down my Instagram feed. She didn't tag me or anything (thank God because I don't even want people to recognize that person on the far left of this picture as me) and she doesn't even follow me, so I was kinda confused that she didn't just crop me out of the picture because that would have been so incredibly easy to do. I'm slightly less horrified because the way everyone is standing makes it look like my date just got cut off of the picture, but in reality, I just went to the dance soloer than a red cup. I wasn't even planning on going to Homecoming because I didn't ask anyone until Connor Slomka (from the "C MoNeY" picture) told me like two days before that there was an open spot in their group blah blah blah... I don't even remember the specifics, but I went and it was weird. Ricky and I still reference this embarrassing moment/picture in my life to make us laugh in disgust haha.
I started this documentation in 2013 to see how much my facial hair would grow if I didn't shave it for no shave November every year. Turns out it wasn't ready haha
This is Connor Slomka being the beast he is. I invited him to come help with my church's thing for kids and he was awesome with the them. He's so caring and relaxed and I can't say enough good things about him. I wish everybody could meet him. I don't think he knew I took this picture.
This is probably the best picture I got of Chance that night. Even then I wasn't trying to record the whole concert. You can see Nico in the back and I don't even know if I knew who he was yet. I remember I saw Peter Cottontale walking around outside as I was leaving, but I didn't say anything because I didn't know what to say. The venue where he performed (the Alter Bar) isn't even open anymore, isn't that weird?
October 26, 2013
The nickname TÉM was going as strong as ever at this point and I was even writing it on my chemistry papers
This is about one of the only pictures I can stomach from any of the school dances. I'm so awkward and clueless when it comes to girls in general, not to mention dances and everything that comes with them. I forgot my wallet and one of the other girls in my group had to pay for both of us. I actually think that was funny (and I paid that girl back later of course), but just about everything else is cringeworthy. That's Morgan by the way and it's nothing against her, it's my fault I didn't have a good experience and I hope her experience wasn't ruined by me
This and the last picture was in our social studies class and we always just called it social. We loved to shorten things and give things our own names. We were just reminiscing about this class and how we would start laughing just because we looked at each other. Here's an excerpt from the convo:
R-" I was thinkin about 8th-grid the other day, and the feeling we used to get in class when we were trying extremely hard not to laugh. Like I can't believe that was a thing. Hahaha. Remember the feeling? For example, being in social, Mr brown's. Getting to the point where your insides are hurting from holding back the laughter. Sweat beads dripping and rolling down your face and shirt. Face turning blood red. The anxiety. And then as soon as one heard the other laugh it was game over. Hahaha. Good times"
T-"yeah dude I often think about both of our social classes. Mr. Brawn & Mr. Deagelis. I wonder what it was about social that was a breeding ground for red faced laughing. I'm laughing just thinking about it right now and I'm in front of a bunch of people watching the game and I'm just laughing into my phone haha. I definitely miss that because that's something that we probably won't ever experience again especially with each other because when would we be in a place where we can't laugh like that again unless you wanna go to a funeral together sometime for the fun of her. Haw"
This is about when I started to be a fan of Chance. Jash played "Juice" and "Cocoa Butter Kisses" in his car just in the background one night and as soon as I heard his voice and flow I remember saying "he sounds so different" and then I wrote down his name in my phone to look him up later. I remember thinking "his name is a little on the nose, isn't it?", but now he'd be weird with a different name haha it's funny how we get accustom to things so quickly. A week later or so, I listened to 10 Day and Acid Rap on a road trip down to Myrtle Beach for vacation. I intially liked 10 Day better than Acid Rap, which is interesting.
This is Alex and I trying to look studly at Luke & Rachel's (youth group leaders) wedding
I worked for my uncle a couple of times tearing down and installing kitchens and I found this on the floor of one of them. I guess a college student lived in there previously haha
On the same trip to NY for the Lucy festival, we went to Niagara Falls. I enjoyed that too. We went under the falls (which was insanely underwhelming) and went by the base of the falls with our raincoats and whatnot and that was cool. The only thing we didn't do was the Maid of the Mist. I didn't like the hassle of getting there and all the people around and everything, but the Falls themselves were cool. I don't know if I would go back. Maybe I would for a female, but if you see it once that's usually enough. That's another thing, it only takes like 5 minutes tops to take it all in and then it's the same view, but my mom wanted to stay longer and I was antsy.
I love the look of old timey marquees. My family and a couple neighbors went on a vacation (some of the same ones that went on the cruise) to where Lucile Ball grew up and they have a comedy festival there every year. I liked it. That's where I got my first (and only so far) improv class and I was the best one there, but I'm not even good at improv.
Apparently I thought different glasses were funny at this time. These are like 1960's lady looking glasses #MadMen
This is me thinking I'm funny at Vacation Bible School in the entrance of my church again where I was doing The TÉM
This was all too real to me throughout high school and not just in the summer. The only difference is they wouldn't even say we're going to hang out usually, they just wouldn't.
This looks like a very contemplative throw for some reason
For some reason in the middle of the game we took a picture together. This was my Youth Group leader all through high school and her husband eventually joined and they co ran it. They are awesome. Now they have two of the chillest & cutest kids ever
This picture always reminded me of Micheal Cera, I don't know, I think it's the chin
Hahahahahahaha I totally 100% forgot about this until now. I don't even know if this is worth explaining because it's so dumb and "had to be there" that no one might think this is funny, so if you're 12 years old or older you may want to move on to the next picure. Alex and I were talking about The Yellow pee pee monster on Tosh.0 during this trip, but neither of us could remember what the actual name was, but we knew "Yellow pee" was in it. Since we couldn't remember, Alex just decided for us that it was the Yellow Pee Strangler because that's hilarious and doesn't make sense. And I think this kid was being a dingus to us (which may have been justified), so we said something like "oh no, it's the Yellow Pee Strangler" and that shut him down pretty quick because how do you respond to that haha. And this picture is so perfect for this meme because he looks so stupid.
This picture is so funny to me because he looks so sad while we're playing football. I don't think he actually cared, but everything about this picture looks sad to me. We mostly hung out together that whole trip, but this was the one thing he didn't want to do together for some reason. If you can't recognize him, that's one of the three bachelors from a previous picture.
It's always difficult to play two hand touch football with girls because it goes so fast and sometimes you don't know what you're touching. And you don't want to get burned by them either because then you just got burned by a girl, so I guess you just have to treat them how you would a guy and hope the Holy Spirit guides your hands to a safe place haha
We played a tag football game one day and I was quarterback for our team and it was really fun, but we ended in a tie. They called me the Green Machine because of my green Pine-Richland shirt. It's always difficult to play two hand touch football with girls because it goes so fast and sometimes you don't know what you're touching. And you don't want to get burned by them because then you just got burned by a girl, so I guess you just have to treat them how you would a guy and hope the Holy Spirit guides your hands to a safe place haha
We helped paint this lady's house (blue shirt, middle, bottomish), which doesn't seem like it really helps in the grand scheme of things because I'm sure there is a lot of other stuff she could have used help with, but this was what we were told to do. She was really nice and hopefully it helped her mentally if nothing else. They say it's more important to connect with the person you're helping than what you're actually there to do, so hopefully we did a better job at that than painting her house.
This is the crew from our church that went on the mission trip that year to West Hamlin, West Virginia. When I think back to this I have fond memories in general, but when I start to really think about it, it really was the worst one by far. I think Youth Works ran it. We were being micromanaged (and having my dad there didn't help) and had a stupid schedule that only allowed like 1 hour or something for free time and you had to stay in this tiny place with nothing to do and you had to fit in a shower (which was a community shower in an abandoned middle school across the street) in there as well as just relax. I could go on and on, but what's the use?
Morgan took these pictures on the last day of school of sophomore year
(From left to right: Chris, Me, Annie & Megan)
I posted this on Instagram, but I will give some backstory to this. The upper picture is from a block party that our street threw every summer I think for a while when we were young. I think we just got off the trampoline when we took this picture because we have other pictures of us jumping on a trampoline too. My mom found this picture a couple months before the bottom picture happened and wanted to recreate it, so she made it happen at Chris' graduation party which is where I eventually have mine two years later.
HAHAHAHA this is a note the substitute art teacher wrote to my art teacher. It's funny to me for so many reasons; that he wrote a note at all, he spelled my name wrong, he was so formal when writing it "proceeded", and my teacher didn't even care. My teacher gave me the note because he knew everyone at my table thought it was so funny. I still have it to this day. All those things are true in the note, but he made it sound a lot weirder in the note than it actually was. I don't remember exactly what happened, but I wasn't doing any work (which if you've taken any basic art class, you know you only have to do work like 60% of the time, if that. And when you are working, you're talking and whatnot) and the sub told me to do work and then I overreacted on purpose and threw one of those brown paper towel rolls that schools have because they must be hella cheap because they are so god awful and as absorbent as sandpaper. I did that because regularly employed art teachers don't even interact with the kids for the most part. They're working on their own portfolio and side projects so they can get a better "job". So if you're a substitute for one of those people, you should just take attendance and shut up because you carry no weight with us. Know your place is what I'm saying. Anyway, after that I just started stabbing a piece of cardboard because it sounded cool and was something to keep my hands occupied while we talked.
This is in the entrance to our church. We wanted to do this more, but it never caught on with us as much as we would have liked. It's kinda like planking on the ground haha
Okay so this story makes more sense phonetically, but anyway I was in a cooking class and it was 3 seniors in my group, another sophomore and I. I guess in hindsight we should have stuck together because we were the only sophomores and there was an element of that, but I kinda saw it as it's either me or him as the runt of the group because every group needs a pee on. Anyways, it was early on in the group dynamic and this kid (I don't even remember his real name) said something about the burners for the stove and the way he said it sounded like "boners". I was the only person to hear it at first and then I told him to tell one of the seniors and they picked up on it too, so from then on his name was Boners. Therefore, he secured the place as the pee on. That's not to say I wasn't made fun of during that class as well, but I was usually secondary to Boners. I guess we kinda bullied him, but he seemed to be okay with it most of the time. I hope he doesn't hate me.
Also, I don't know how all those pictures of Boners got on Morgan's phone, but they did and she decided to tweet them. (Just take in all the nostalgia from this snapshot; IOS 6? probably, 3G was the highest you could get, the bars are still there for signal, and the favorite button on Twitter, but wait when was it orange?)
This is sophomore year, the year I learned how weird it was to spell "sophomore". I think Morgan took this in Biology and I was reppin' my favorite rapper at the time, Lecrae. This definitely looks like a Friday outfit. I used to wear my a bad outfit on Mondays and a great outfit of Fridays because I wanted people to go home over the weekend and if they thought about me they would think of the last day they saw me, which was a Friday. It kinda created a buildup because each day got closer to Friday and a better outfit meant closer to the weekend etc...
This is a very funny, very awkward picture and it always makes me laugh when I see it, so I thought I would throw it up here. This was sophomore year of high school in the snack line with Morgan
I love this message. This is from a Lecrae song called "Anger Management". To me, this means it doesn't matter what people say and just focus on Jesus.
I used to have this Instagram account that I posted Lecrae lyrics as memes. I think it's still there, I just haven't updated it in years. This was one of my most liked pictures and I saw that people snapshotted and put it on their Instagram, which I think is so cool. I feel like some people would be mad at that because they didn't get cited as the person that made it, but I'm just happy that more people are seeing the thing I made. Now, obviously I didn't write that lyric or take that picture, but the same thing applies to all the stuff I do. I just want people to see and like my stuff and if it brings them happiness or helps them feel less alone for a couple moments then that makes me feel good and they don't have to know that I wrote it or filmed it or whatever because it's more important to me that good content is out there than for people to know that I made something. What I try to make is unique and no one else is doing like me because there's enough of the same thing out there.
It's almost sad how much I relate to Chandler.
This meme is applicable to almost any conversation
I would say that at one point 50% of my photos on my phone were memes and 90% of those memes were F•R•I•E•N•D•S memes. Chandler is my favorite.
I guess this was before lighting was invented and people knew how to take pictures. This was in a dorm room that we stayed in for a mission trip at Grove City College. They didn't have air-conditioning and I'm still salty about it.
This is the only on-purpose good picture I had taken of me on this trip. But the real reason I put this picture on here is because of the dog in the background. Remember what I said about the dogs on the "Rass Dag" picture? Well this one was extra terrible. He moved really slowly and was always laying down like that. One of the adults of the group has some sort of back and knee problems, so he had percocets prescribed to him to help with the pain. But since he felt bad for the dog, he wanted to put it out of its misery. We didn't know how much would be enough, so he asked one of the girls who wasn't in the conversation to say a number 1-7. She said 3, so we tried to give the dog 3 percs in a piece of bread or something, but he didn't die. He must have just felt really good for a couple hours.
I look like a freak among norms. This was at a local market in Nicaragua. I didn't like it because there were too many people and I didn't know what to get so I didn't get anything. One of the first things we did when we got to Nicaragua was go to a bank and exchange our money for their money. I don't think I fully understood the amounts of them. I went to get a drink at some local stand and a little kid was running it and he gave me a drink and I gave him what I knew was too much but I was expecting change and then he ran away and I thought he would come back, but he never did and I waited there for like 5 minutes like an idiot and then I had to swallow that bitter pill of realizing I just got bamboozled. That kinda stuff happened all the time there because they're doing whatever they can to survive and I respect that in some ways. If I'm stupid enough to give money to a little kid (that may not have even worked there in hindsight), maybe I deserve to get beat and he gets the money.
If I learned nothing else on this mission trip, I learned that you always have to be ready for your picture to be taken on mission trips because people take it even if there is nothing to look at and that's what this picture taught me. I guess it's the Seinfeld approach to photography
Some of the chairs in the courtyard were really flimsy plastic lawn chairs and I guess I was just too much for it (much like I am to people sometimes) and what other choice do you have than to laugh at yourself because otherwise you're just a guy who's mad he broke a chair. The real hero is whoever took this picture so we can relive this moment over, and over again. humiliation
This was our first meal in Nicaragua. I don't know how you cook something like this, but it was the whole fish and you had to pick out the meat. It was really good actually, but it was difficult to get mostly meat. There were a lot of sharp parts and stuff you didn't want in your mouth, but other than that it was tasty.
This is a picture of the outside of our hostel. Next to it was a little gift shop type place. We went in there one day to get stuff for our family and I got my dad a mug to go with the Costa Rican coffee I got him (which he proceeded to ruin by putting it in the dishwasher), some jewelry for my mom and I got a pipe for myself. It's a small pipe that looks hand painted and really cool. I still have it. It's the same pipe that I use in the beginning of the "I'm Better Than You" video.
This is the sign of the hostel we stayed at in Nicaragua. It was actually pretty nice. They had a courtyard and a kitchen and stuff. The funniest part about it was Rass and I had to share a bed. He had the outside of the bed and I was against the wall, so he hogged all the fan haha.
We got to stay in a resort on the way to our destination in Nicaragua from Costa Rica and got there really late. We immediately went to the buffet right before they closed, thankfully, but they didn't have everything out because they were preparing to close and didn't expect a literal busload of hungry people to come in. After the buffet, we went to our rooms and we kinda got a second wind from the food and from being pent up in a bus for like 6 hours. So most of us decided to go swimming, but since it was already dark we didn't see the sign that said it closed at 10pm. We probably would have done it anyway because we only had one night there. The pool is really cool because they make it look like a "natural" pool. After a while, most of the people went to bed, but it was me and two other dudes still swimming and one of them took their trunks off, so we did too. It was very fun and freeing to swim in a big pool like that naked. It wasn't for very long, but it was my only time skinny dipping (so far) because you don't get many opportunities to do that haha
The next day we had a few hours to roam around the resort before we had to leave and we found a waterslide that is 420 meters. It is the largest waterslide in Costa Rica in a mountain. It felt like the resort was so large and we didn't even get to see half of it.
This is one of the two buses we were in and this one was extra wack because the column I'm sitting in doesn't have seat backs and was insanely uncomfortable. I think we had some sort of back rubbing conga line at one point though and that wasn't bad. Hahaha I forgot about Mio drink drops things that I have in my right hand and I don't know why I was advertising it because I hated it because you could never get the ratio quite right and it always tasted too watery or too strong. That was probably the last time I used Mio.
Hahaha this is Rass Dag (Ross Dog, if you haven't caught on yet we replace vowels with the "a" sound). Everyday looked like this dog's last and we were sure we wouldn't see him the next, but lo and behold he was there truckin'. Dogs aren't treated the same there as they are here for the most part. Most of them are strays and this one tended to hang around the compound. He took a liking to Rass and that's why we call him Rass Dag. Every time you'd pet one of them, though, your hands would smell like poop because they smelled like poop. Rass and I think this dog is possessed by a demon and that's why he never dies haha.
Yuck. I hate the feeling of sunscreen. You're already hot and then you put a goupy substance on yourself so you don't turn red. I hate everything about it, except the smell of it. The smell reminds me of Kennywood Park. When I was a kid, my cousins from Maryland used to come up for a week in the summer and the highlight of the visit was always Kennywood, but we'd always have to lather up before we got there and so the smell always reminds me of that. Anyway, Carol sneak attacked us with sunscreen all the time and then I guess they wanted to make an example out of me because they took this picture so they could show all the moms back in the US that their kids were safe from the Costa Rican rays.
This is the one time I was photogenic on this trip and it was on accident. If you were to see me seconds after this picture was taken, you would see me with my hands over my face and in emotional pain because I had just soiled my perfect streak of ruining pictures.
This is me trying to hide from a picture with no hands to help me. I was just moving dirt from one end of the compound to the other. That's what they had to do in the Concentration Camps. I'm just kidding, I'm not comparing this to a concentration camp. Although they did actually make them do stuff like that where they would dig a hole and carry the dirt from that hole to the other end of the camp and dig a hole and put the dirt from the other side in that hole and repeat. That's what I call a not-so-fun fact. I bet you didn't think you'd be reading the history of concentration camps when you scrolled up to this picture, huh? Well, life is full of surprises.
A nice picture of all of us (except me of course) when we first got there. When we first got there Rass and I pretty much just stuck together because we were both overwhelmed. There were free roaming chickens, stray dogs, people that don't speak my language and a large group of missionaries that got overbooked for one night with us. Needless to say, it was a lot to take in especially after a long flight. Rass taught me about how the first day of something is usually the worst and that the rest of the trip usually isn't as bad as the first day. I think it's because you are still figuring out the "matrix code" behind everything and you're out of your element, so it takes about a day to feel adjusted.
This is just more of the church/place we stayed at in Costa Rica
I don't remember how this nickname came about, but this was a lot more short-lived than TÉM.
This was 9th Grade and I guess I was way cooler back then. Oh well. I still wear that shirt to this day because people love it even though I hate it. I hate it because it says "SAVE FERRIS" but it's a picture of Cameron in his back yard. I guess they couldn't get the licensing rights to Matthew Broderick or something, but the next logical character is Ed Rooney, the principal. And my mom bought it for me from Target so that didn't help it's case with me liking the shirt. But I still love the movie and people love the shirt, so I'm okay with it I guess. Also, the girl in this picture was one of the hottest girls in our grade at the time and is even hotter now of course and I haven't talked to her since 9th grade because I'm me haha.
My mom has a lot of great Christmas Sweaters. I was really into that meme generator app that randomly put a caption on your picture for some reason
Look at those pale guns of mine. This was Rass and my last Murder Mystery play together and it was the best one. My character had a funny voice and Rass and I walked funny etc... I still remember one of my lines (because I got the line two years in a row because the same guy wrote both plays and I guess he didn't get the reaction he wanted the first time haha) "... more angry than a long tailed cat in a rocking chair factory". Ah the theatre
This was at halftime during our last lacrosse game of the season and our coach wore a white tux to symbolize our undefeated season. I was a Freshman at this point and I'm number 26.
My nickname from like 8th grade through junior year of high school was TÉM, which was just a funny way to say Tom. I guess you had to be there. The pose in this picture is called "The TÉM". I missed a tackle and accidentally stuck my fingers into the ballcarrier's mouth and I felt so stupid so I just did this.
This was my confirmation class for Bakerstown United Methodist Church in 8th grade (I'm top row, third from the right)
Yet another fake outside picture smh. I thought (and still think) it was so funny to have a pink popped collar polo for a school picture. I did it for the attention of a girl (of course), but I don't know if she even noticed.
That's Micheal in the middle (not Malcolm) and his cousin Chris on the left. We're all neighbors and went to the Pittsburgh Penguins parade after they won the Stanley Cup in 2009 together.
Ah, the feeling of my hair as it blows in the wind from the deep blue waves. I look really weird in this picture haha. This was an excursion on a cruise during spring break of 3rd grade. I'm sitting next to my childhood neighbor & friend, Micheal O. My family and some of our neighbors went on a cruise because we all were similar in age and our parents were friends and that was a really cool thing that not a lot of people get to experience. I believe '05 was the year.
This is my cousin (Remember how I said my dad's friend in high school had two kids? This is one of them. The other one, Julia, wasn't born yet. so he's not technically my cousin, but we call him that because our parents knew each other for so long), Paul. I love this picture a lot for a lot of reasons. Paul looks like he's getting the best massage of his life and he's wearing overalls. And I have a cutoff shirt on, a Phillies hat (I just bought it on the basis of the looks and not my affiliations), as beautiful as ever straight long hair, and silly looking teeth that looks like I bought from a novelty store. All the ingredients for a great picture. I have a funny caption (depending on where you're from) on Instagram with this picture from 2014, if you're interested as well.
This is when I looked like a beast playing football. You couldn't even see my name on the back of my jersey because my hair was in the way. I don't remember why exactly that I grew my hair then. I guess I was alway a bit of a person that went against the "norm", but I think I was influenced by The Los Lonely Boys & Troy Polamalu as well (no one actually called me Tomamalu, I just made that up for this).
This was back when I was a beast
This is my cousin and me at my aunt's birthday party. You almost can't tell that this is not two girls.
This is my hair in second grade. A lot of people said I had a mullet the whole time I had long hair as a kid, but that was never my intention. I can see how people thought that at this stage, but I just wanted long hair and my mom gave me bangs I guess. It was borderline mullet at this point.
We were raking leaves on this fall day and decided to take a picture. This age must have been the pinnacle funniness of bunny ears.
I don't know why they never actually go outside for these fake naturey pictures. They have to be cheaper to actually do outside rather than pay and transport these unnecessary backdrops and make you pet them which is what it looks like I'm doing.
You can just see in his eyes that this dude was gonna be a boss some day
This is my aunt's favorite picture of me. I like all the black and white in the picture with the black and white shirt and the black and white polkadot. She says I've always smiled with my eyes
Yes, yes. This is me with a superman temp tat on my chest whilst wearing a superman shirt and I know you're jealous, but don't let it show because it is unbecoming
Once upon a time, three couples were fresh out of high school with dreams of having a family and then they did and had these three kids.
Haha this is me, Emily and Taylor. This might be really confusing, but both of my parents and Emily's mom met in high school. Emily's parents met in the theatre in college. Emily's dad's band was doing a gig and he invited Taylor's future dad and Emily's mom brought Taylor's future mom and that's how they met. And they all eventually made us! And we still get together a couple times a year except it's expanded since '00 or whenever this was taken. Emily and Taylor both have a sister now (Carley & Sydney) and another one of my dad's friends from high school has two kids now (Paul & Julia, one of whom is in an upcoming picture soon with me). It's nuts to me that it's a possibility that me and my friends now might have kids and they might be friends too because we were friends years before they were even born.
Wow I peaked way too early. Look at that cutie. Although, it looks like my parents threw a couple buttons on a loosely woven blanket and took me to preschool picture day haha
I think bowties are on the cusp of being overrated nowadays, but back then I rocked it harder than a Van Halen concert. This was on Christmas Eve over my aunt & uncle's house. Our family has it there every year with about a little over 30 people. We make the bread and do the seven fishes and all that good stuff.
This is me and my cousins panning pizza. My uncle makes bread dough from scratch and we help him. It's a family tradition. I've been doing it my whole life as you can see.
Don't be talkin' smack 'bout Pooh Bear.
I believe this is at my Great Aunt Mary's old house. She moved out of there when I was pretty young, but I still have fond memories of that place. I remember she had one of those teapots that screamed when it was done. Who thought that was a good idea? "Let's have a nice, relaxing cup of tea" SSSSKKKKEEEEEE "oh nevermind I guess I will just have 4 heart attacks instead"
I guess I would watch his video tapes and imitate him. (If you look closely, I'm wearing Mickey Mouse overalls)
I think my mom said this is her favorite baby picture of me. Who can blame her with that sweet sweatervest