Thursday, July 30, 2009

For Tax Reasons: Wash and Resize

So someone in For Tax Reasons has been looking at my site and actually PERSONALLY delivered one of the new TSHIRTS. I feel like Asuka being given the production line Evas before anyone else!

I don't want to post a picture of it because it's still a secret but I can tell you that it has 2 holes for either arm, a hole for my waist, a hole for my head, and a whole lot of fun.

If you want to see it, I'll be writing in my apartment today and I might get a coffee on Steinway Street. I'll be wearing glasses.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

G.I. Joe FanFic :: They Can't All Be Good

"This is it," shouted Snow Job under the helicopter blades of a helicopter. Snow Job lifted up his goggles, wiped the inside of them with his gloved finger and put them back on his face.
"No, no," he corrected, "take me back up, this is wrong."
Snow Job leans back in his seat as Shipwreck starts up the bird again.
"Why the heck did Hawk send us out on this mission?" Shipwreck threw out. In fact, he was channeling his frustration with Snow Job who clearly wasn't cut out for copter flights. Shipwreck would never challenge the orders of General Hawk, not after last summer when he airlifted Shipwreck out of a shipwreck. Ever since, Shipwreck's been afraid to go back into the water. He didn't like what he became out there and took up piloting. Some people can't transition that fast and fully into a new position, but Shipwreck wasn't just "some people" he was G.I. Joe.
"Okay, now," Snow Job spit as he tapped Shipwreck unnecessarily on the shoulder. "I'm sure this is it." Shipwreck rather land in the wrong spot again than argue with Snow Job. The man has a history of going completely looney tunes if he's not in his element, and here in Peru, snow is touch and go. The copter goes down and crunches on the icy soil. Over a sharp cliff Snow Job spots some snow.
"Perfect," he thinks to himself. "I'm going to go be me," he says to Shipwreck and before anything could be argued he was gone.
"Well, I guess it's just you and me, Polly," Shipwreck says to the green bird flying about the helicopter cabin, "you can come out now, he's gone."
Polly flies out and lands on Shipwreck's shoulder.
"Did you see me fly, Polly?" Shipwreck asks as he pets his beak, "I was like you out there."
Pttoo! Pitoo! Two shots ring out from a distance, rock springs up from the dirt at Shipwreck's feet. Polly takes off and heads toward the amazon. Ptoo! Another shot but this time its met with a wet thump. Again, another call and responce of "ptoo! and wet thump."
Shipwreck feels his chest, he's alright. He turns around and sees nothing, then back to the direction of the shots. He sees a white rock moving towards him. It's Snow Job.
Shipwreck doesn't even have time to ask why he was being shot at because as soon as he opens his mouth, it's met with the shusshing of Snow Job's gloved finger. Snow Job turns Shipwreck around to see a black lump of ninja dead in the dirt.
"You shot Snake-Eyes."
"How'd I do that? Where'd he come from?"
"He must've been riding under the copter. He does that sometimes."
"How are we going to cover this up?"
"I was saving your life!"
The two decide to just carry out their mission and they'll say that Cobra attacked them and took out Snake-Eyes with Snow Job's gun. They used a similar tactic back when Scarlett cut off her own hand when she was too drunk to prove a point about loading a crossbow one handed. Cobra itself has been out of the game for some twenty years with not one attack on either US or international soil. Most of the reports are conceived in moments such as this. Even the reason they're in Peru now is a scam of sorts. Shipwreck heard that Duke got into some trouble with the locals and set a cart of guinea pigs on fire. One report to Hawk about how it was Fire Fly causing the trouble was enough to send out two of their best to the mountains.
Snow Job and Shipwreck bury Snake-Eyes.
"Man says about as much now as when he was alive," Snow Job says in an attempt of cutting the tension.
Shipwreck just nods and asks, "What are we going to do about Duke?"
Snow Job stiffens. "There's something Hawk didn't tell you. Those guinea pigs he murdered were part of a top secret intelligence operation known only as G-Force. Duke cost us over 3 thousand dollars. We were sent to take care of him. Maybe Snake-Eyes was here to follow us, make sure we did our job."
Shipwreck asks why he wasn't told about this until now and Snow Job can only offer that Hawk still thinks that last year's shipwreck is still weighing on the old sailor. Snow Job throws in, "you're fragile." That doesn't help things.
"Maybe Hawk's right," offers Shipwreck, "maybe I am too soft for this stuff."
"That's okay," consoles Snow Job, "I killed Duke while you were playing with that bird."
"That was fast."
"I know, right," says Snow Job as he slaps Shipwreck on the back and steps into the helicopter.
"What'd you do with his body?"
Snow Job only smiles.
The copter flies over the mountain-scape and Polly flies aboard. It's quite beautiful. Shipwreck switches the copter to autopilot and tries to catch some shut-eye. Just as he's about to doze off, he notices something happening on the mountain top below. It looks like a man being eaten by guinea pigs. It looks like.. Duke! The blood soaks into the snow. It's like a cherry slushie.
"Snow Job, promise me one thing," starts Shipwreck as he fights his urge to sleep.
"Anything," says Snow Job.
"When you're sent to kill me, don't have me eaten alive by tiny animals."
"You got it, soldier, you got it," Snow Job says with a kindness Shipwreck never saw before. Polly senses something unnatural in Snow Job's smile.
"SQUAK!" says Polly.
Shipwreck falls asleep and Polly starts flapping around the cabin. He makes a dive and pecks at Snow Job's goggles. Snow Job grabs Shipwreck's knife and cuts off the bird's beak with one strike. He cuts off Shipwreck's seatbelt and kicks him out the opening in the copter. Despite his wounds, Polly tries to grab Shipwreck in the air, but the weight is too much. They fall together. None of them would say this out loud because it would seem too obvious, but they both knew that "together" is how they wanted to die.
Snow Job flicks on the video-phone and calls General Hawk.
"Man over-board, General Hawk."
"Good," says Hawk, "Very Good."
"So is it true?" asks Snow Job, "Are you really Destro in disguise?"
"No," says Hawk, "I'm ZARTAN!"
"No," counters Snow Job, "You're a dead man!"
Six hours later the helicopter arrives at the P.I.T. helipad. There's quite a mad scene as Snow Job runs around trying to unmask Zartan. Eventually Snow Job shoots him, reveals what's going on, and further proves to everyone that he should lead even though he thought he was doing infiltration work for Cobra during the better part of 14 years.
"At least I'm dedicated to something.." was his main selling point. People appreciate his honesty and his impressive skill set so they go along with this. Some people, Roadblock specifically and aptly enough given his callname, were initially more hesitant and asked questions about why Snow Job was fine taking orders from Destro but freaked out when he learned it was Zartan, given that Zartan was probably just working for Destro anyway. These queries were usually met with a funny stare from Snow Job and that usually ended the debate. Years later, in 1996, Snow Job will introduce a super-suit technology to G.I. Joe and people will be okay with it.

Monday, July 20, 2009


The reason a For Tax Reasons fan site exists:

This weekend was Otakon 2009, Baltimore's own super anime convention. So naturally, Ben, Matt, Darrell, Mao, and myself made it our business to be there. For Tax Reasons had a panel called: Let's Talk Animation and it was awesome. I'm not sure if they're going to upload parts of it but I did video-tape it so it does exist. Also, to make it more cinema verté I made sure that I knocked the camera a few times, fought to find focus, and futzed with the audio levels a bit. I took some pictures to document the trip. Again, some of the pictures are blurry. This is meant to create the illusion of "being there." So come on Internet, grab your Naruto head bands, hop aboard the proverbial Chinatown Bus and let's go to Otakon!

"Oops, this isn't right." Initially we got on the Boston bus by accident and ended up at the boat show. Pictured are the two halves of For Tax Reasons LLC: Forta and Xreasons (l to r).

For Tax Reasons wants to learn SURF but Boston's gym leader is lost in the mines. If only there was some other way to get to Baltimore in time!!!!!This will do, but it's going to co$t. Away to Baltimore!!!

"Ah, that's more like it.."

Sweet! It's Misty!!!

OH NO! James from Team Rocket is here! Jesse can't be far behind. Unless she didn't preregister, then she'll probably be here in three and a half hours.

Squirtle! Charmander! Cubone! Ninetails!

Looks like we're not the only trainers here from out of town.. Xavier must want his hands on some dangerous pokémons. Well, Xavier and that Scott Pilgrim dude with the stick.

Ahhhh! It's Gastly!!!! What type pokémon is good againsts ghosts again?!

When Hiker challenges German Hiker to a Pokémon, you mustn't run away.

This guy definitely knows what I'm talking about.

I scored an exclusive lunch with Xreasons. He showed me some of the pokémon he snapped.

Quick! It's Mewtwo!

Who the heck gave their Arcanine a guitar?!

Where's Charizard? Hint: he's dressed like Spider-man with a black chest.

Foreground: Ash realizes what happens when you go to a fight without any pokéballs.
Background: Black Spy Trainer gives Rorshach Trainer a bomb painted to look like a giant bean.
Click for bigger!

Finally, someone not dressed as a pokémon. Here lies Tjaden from All Quiet on the Western Front. I did not know that was originally a manga.

Xreasons visits fans Mao and Darrell.

Watchout Swimmer! Bulbasaur is right behind you and he's armed!!!!

This year, signs were banned at Otakon, but not Meowith tossing.

Xreasons! Put your shirt back on!

Forta and Xreasons taking a some final pictures.

Cheer up Misty! All your pokémon may have fainted from too much anime, but it's not over yet!

It's over. Goodbye Otakon.