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I’m redesigning this site in public! Follow the process step by step at

You know, neither my physique nor my personality suggests a similarity to any hibernating animal that I can think of, and yet, this site routinely falls silent at the beginning of winter, as if I had found a comfortable cave in which to reduce my vital signs and nap for a few months. If South Philadelphia hides any such caves, it hides them well, so unless business as usual is a mundane hallucination, it’s safe to say that I’ve been awake and active since this site last monitored my continuing existence some six weeks ago.

Somewhere in those six weeks, the National Film Challenge announced its awards, two of which were given to Dial-A-Spy, for “Best of Genre (Spy)” and “Best Graphics.” We have yet to find out if we are among the top ten films, which are destined for the National Film Challenge DVD.

I witnessed the holiday season in relatively orthodox fashion, tempering the uptime of frenzied consumerism, family gatherings, and culinary gluttony with equal portions of sloth-ridden downtime spent absorbing the contents of some freshly-gifted additions to my music, movie, and book collections.

My roommates and I hosted a party that rang in 2004 in whatever the opposite of style is, demanding that our guests don garish sweaters to comply with the “Pugnacious Pullovers” theme.

The winter has otherwise mostly kept me at home, though I’ve snuck out now and then to get a laugh from Brendon Small, H. Jon Benjamin, and Eugene Mirman at the Khyber, have my faith in Tim Burton put back on the road to restoration with Big Fish, and be thoroughly mesmerized by a too-short Kayo Dot performance at the Rotunda.

Since I only delivered on half of the expectations set forth in my first post of 2003, I’m going to use this first post of 2004 to acknowledge that I really can’t say with certainty what this year has in store. I definitely have plenty of ideas, but it’s probably easier to learn to enjoy suspense than to enjoy disappointment, so, for the sake of my few faithful readers, I’ll keep talk of goals to myself for now. Happy New Year!