Holiday Car Gifting Guide 2012

It’s that time of the year again, when loving spouses buy their significant other the humble-surprise-gift of an automobile and wrap it with a redonkulously large red bow (that required some Asian kid to use his head to hold the ribbon in place for the knot).

But how does one go about selecting which extravagantly lavish auto to gift? Should you stick with American made? A sporty coup? Military surplus? Of all the terrible decisions one faces during the holidays…

And for once, television isn’t helping. I’ve avidly been studying the dearth of inadequate commercials thus far this fall in order to make an educated decision. I’ve been appalled. What has happened to the audacious auto industry that brought us tail fins, seat warmers and the straight-eight engine?

You know what passes for innovation these days? A hatchback that opens when you wave your foot in front of it. Of all the freakin mind-blowing… [Read more…]

Dieselpunk Encyclopedia

Now presenting the first all-encompassing, one-stop dieselpunk wiki! For all your dieselpunk curiosities and addictions. The Dieselpunk Encyclopedia has come.

The curators are two of the most venerable dieselpunks on the planet (this reality or any alternately dieselishly one you can come up with): Lord K and Larry Amyett (of Texas!) From subculture to fashion to literature to cinema to DIY to the tenets of dieselpunk, the DP Encyclopedia has it all.

“Rather than sealing oneself in the dusty coffins of a long dead past, a dieselpunk should adopt the orphan zeitgeist of earlier days and raise it in the modern age. By fusing the past with today, he builds something new that would be unexpected in any age.”


“Dieselpunks are not stagnant consumers. The dieselpunk mentality demands dynamism in thinking and expression. It is not enough to consume the fruits of our father’s labor and suckle the milk of our corporate mothers. In order to grow in mind and spirit, dieselpunks and their communities must strive to create a vision of the future using whatever tools they are armed with: the brush, the pen, the camera, or the wrench.”

“Dieselpunk is a sub-genre of the pop surrealist art movement and a budding sub-culture that combines the aesthetics of the interbellum period through World War II, and ending before or at the early 1950s, with postmodern technology and sensibilities. According to the article “Discovering Dieselpunk” the word “Dieselpunk” was coined in 2001 as a marketing term by game designer Lewis Pollak to describe his role-playing game Children of the Sun, dieselpunk has grown to describe a distinct style of visual art, music, motion pictures, fiction, and engineering.”

So, still wondering what dieselpunk really is? Well, that’s part of the whole experience. Jump on board and you can contribute to the definition as it evolves along with our future! You’ll find you are along for the ride with a great group of people.

History’s Forgotten Moonlight Towers

Moonlight tower in San JoseEvery era has technological innovations that seem significant at the time (and sometimes are) but somehow slip out of the history books to fade from the collective memory. During research for the second novel in my Reeferpunk series, I found one of these innovations too irresistible to pass up. From the late 19th century to the early 20th century moonlight towers illuminated cities across both Europe and the United States.

While these towers populated dozens of cities for almost half a century, illuminating city blocks with powerful arc lamps, they quickly dimmed into history’s forgotten archives. Bizarre to the modern eye, these towers often ranged from 150 to over 200 feet high and were used during an era when standard, smaller-sized street lamps were impractical and readily-available electricity had yet to burgeon. [Read more…]