The Official Mark Home Page
Hobbies, Interests, and Other
My hobbies and interests include:
- Camping: Many of my youthful weekends were spent in the foothills of the Adirondack Park in NY - a beutiful place to be!!! I also really enjoyed Southwest Virginia while attending Grad School in Blacksburg - from the views and wild ponies at Mt Rogers to the splendor of McAfee's Knob. It's somewhat harder to find good outdoorsy activities here in Michigan...
- Skiing (downhill and cross country): Well, OK, I don't XC ski much anymore, but I used to! And I usually have an annual ski trip someplace good, usually in the Northeast. See the pictures in the Photo Album Page! Past ski trips:
- 1999 - Loon Mountain, Lincoln New Hampshire
- 2000 - McCauley Mountain, Old Forge New York
- 2001 - Bolton Valley, Vermont
- 2002 - Ithaca, NY (although no skiing actually took place. DOH!)
- Cycling (road and mountain): I have an OLD Panasonic DX-4000 road bike that still rides like a champ, and a Barracuda A2RS mountain bike (Rock Shox Mag21 fork, XTR and XT deraillieurs, and sucky canti brakes). In 2000, I also built up a killer new Mtn Bike around a great bargain of a Specialized frame (Manitou SX-R shock, XTR rear drlr, XT and LX components.) My quads got quite a workout during grad school, with a peak annual mileage of over 850mi road and over 200mi mountain!!! Sadly, riding declined dramatically after I moved to Michigan, the land of crazed, angry, thoughtless drivers and shoulderless, poorly maintained roads.
- Guitar: I'm awfully rusty, but I play a Fender HMS Series Strat, with a Marshall 4x12 Cabinet and a JMP Head. See the Art Of Mark section below!
- Pizza: Especially with bacon.
My General Recommendations:
- Dr. Strangelove or How I Learned To Stop Worrying And Love The Bomb (1964): A crazy tale of an insane general and his plans for nuclear holocaust back in the good old days of the cold war. My favorite Stanly Kubrik film.
- Army of Darkness (Evil Dead 3) (1993): "Trapped in Time, Surrounded by Evil, Low on Gas." Great horror movie turned comedy. Gotta love the chainsaw!
- Dark City (1998): Similar to The Matrix, which I also like.
- Life Is Beautiful (La Vita E Bella) (1997): Yes, it's subtitled, which is usually enough of a reason for me to avoid a movie, but it really is worth seeing. A great, inspiring film.
- Office Space: A truly hillarious rendition of what corporate life is really like, from the creator of King of the Hill.
- Zen And The Art Of Motorcycle Maintenance: A definite must read, even if you couldn't care less about motorcycles or how to maintain them. Lightly philosophical. Take my word for it, go read it!!!
- Illusions (Richard Back): A good, short read, about what the life would be like for a modern day messiah.
- The New Complete Joy of Homebrewing (Charlie Papazian): Relax! Have a homebrew!
- Zeppelin and Floyd: Old, but still good. My all time favorite Zeppelin tune - "What Is And What Should Never Be"
- Live (1993): Throwing Copper is an essential, but I wasn't thrilled with later albums.
- Huffamoose (1998): I love that song "Wait", and I don't care if nobody else likes them!!!
- U2: The older U2, that is. Joshua Tree was the pinnacle of the bands efforts, and it all seems to have been downhill from there. October, Wide Awake In America, Boy -- all fantastic albums. Thankfully, All That You Can't Leave Behind signals a return to the U2 music that matches my musical taste.
- Radiohead: OK Computer and The Bends are among my all time favorite albums; I can't say that I care for Amnesiac or Kid A.
- Weezer: The blue album is an essential in any CD collection. Later albums have a few great songs here and there...
- Futurama: I cried when Fox cancelled Futurama...
The Art of Mark:
- Guitar: Right click here to download an mp3 file of me playing guitar! (You'll need an mp3 player, which you can get from www.winamp.com if you don't have one.)
- Shoe Goo: Click here to read my poem about Shoe Goo.