Adios Kansas, Hello Wisconsin

So today’s post is gonna be a little different. I figured I’d toss a little personal info here and hopefully you don’t mind.

For the first 28 years of my life I was born, raised, and eventually pastramifyed Lawrence, Kansas. Lawrence is a good town and I’ve made many a friend living there. It should also be noted that these were some pretty damn good friends considering what everyone did during a going away gathering.DSCN0632

That’s right. We all had pastrami sandwiches that night. Anyways, back to the point here. Lawrence is the city where I was taught about art. In high school I had a fantastic art teacher who taught many of us a lot about art. She exposed us to so many things we’d otherwise miss out on. For me it really helped to find things I was attracted to (in art) and eventually help to develop my own style. I’m not sure what she’d say now knowing that I turned down a scholarship to CCAD, quit doing art for years to eventually start back up making cartoons.

Drawn with a stick.

Drawn with a stick.

17 year old Mr. Pastrami

17 year old Mr. Pastrami

...and eventually it led to cartoons.

…and eventually it all led to cartoons.

It’s also the city where I learned to develop my own sense of humor. Between the ages of 16-18 I worked at a movie theater with many funny characters who all had a different sense of humor about them.  This is probably what drove me to the random of making short films or these cartoons with bad jokes. Either way, there was never a shortage of funny people around me and these friends always let me ramble on about absurd topics. Life really does get better the more time you spend laughing and with those friends there was no shortage of laughs.

It’s also the place where I learned to love music. As an awkward teen I certainly found my place listening to punk rock and starting my love of tunes. Eventually I even picked up a bass and for years played in and out of bands. I even eventually started playing guitar and writing my own tunes. For a while I dropped out of it completely and only played around the house once every so often. Around 26 a friend pulled me into a punk rock band he was in at the time and I started up again. Eventually I turned some of my old songs electric and started a rock ‘n’ roll group called, “Jon Hunter & the Backup Drinkers”. You can find some of it here and don’t worry, I already know my voice isn’t the best and this band doesn’t really exist anymore. My friends were always there to make sure I didn’t drop the things I loved and had some mediocre talent at.

The last punk rock band I was in.

The last punk rock band I was in.

Hiding out in the back.

Hiding out in the back.

In Lawrence I did everything that people do growing up: I loved, learned about heart break, made many friends, watched friends move away, lost a close and dear friend, tried to be a respectable family member at my brother’s wedding, dealt with various vices, and learned to stop shying away from goals. That brings us to this: Last Wednesday I got in a van with my father, Ernest Borgnine, and all of my possessions and drove 530 miles away. I’ve moved up to Madison, Wisconsin. Up here I knew no one (although I’ve met one or two people by this point), have no job (got my fingers crossed that this could change next week), and am on quite the adventure. Hopefully I’ll be able to show off more of this city in the cartoons and share with anyone who reads this as well. I will say that it will be hard to find people better than the friends I had back in Kansas. They were a great bunch and all people I cherish. Here, this is a gallery of the pastrami dinner so you can get an idea of what I’m talking about.

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So the next time I raise a glass I’ll be sure to toast all of those in Kansas, the new faces I’ve met, and all of those out there in the world I still have to meet.




11 thoughts on “Adios Kansas, Hello Wisconsin

  1. Pastramyfied. Couldn’t have said it better myself. This was awesome dude. With all the talent you have stocked up, it’s only a matter of time before you take over Wisconsin too. (I realize you didn’t really rule Kansas, but you would be a kind ruler if you did.)

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