MGoBlog Profiles Six Zero

Submitted by Seth on April 20th, 2012 at 4:02 PM

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Several years ago a board member came up with the idea of introducing some of the more prominent personalities in the pages of MGoBlog; thus was born the MGoProfile Series. He's interviewed everyone from Lloyd Brady to WolverineHistorian, to Magnus, Shredder, TomVH, and Brian Cook, as well as plenty others, but there's one important member of the MGoBlogosphere he's still missing.

You've read his comic. You've seen his designs that litter every corner of this site. You're probably wearing a t-shirt designed by him right now, and if you're not well you should get on that. He even once ended WWII with vector graphics. Today the writers of MGoBlog turn the microphone around so you can meet the MGoArtist, MGoCartoonist, MGoProfiler, and MGoLegend himself. It's time to set your Maize-and-Bluephoria Hype-o-Meter to six as we proudly introduce the one, the only (…person who can write a more hyped introduction than this one):

charlieblockhamSix Zero!

Meet? Meet!

Question from Seth:

There's the profiles, the logos, the banners, the t-shirts, and now the Blockhams…just how much art do you do around here, and how did all of these projects come about?

Hard for me to answer, since I’m not entirely sure how much art is really put forth at MGoBlog. I guess only Brian could answer that.

I can say that I’ve done a whole mess of t-shirts, the logo that was originally born out of the first ‘MGoShirt Alert’ series, the masthead and its entire 2010 coaching search shtick, a few Hello player graphics for Tom and Tim, an occasional ad or graphic for Brian, and yes, the Blockhams. Oh, and the Marvin Robinson with the three on his chest, for Shoe, haha.

As for HOW they all came about… it’s a pretty lengthy story to tell. I guess I proposed the t-shirt poll/promotion to Brian in the summer of ’09(?), and I’m sure many can remember how not-so-smoothly the whole thing began. But after the mascot shirt was declared the winner I was basically contacted by the powers that be about developing several other shirts and continuing where they left off. I do a lot of shirts, and not all of them show up in the catalog, obviously, but it’s been fun partnering with some pretty great people to make them happen, and the real payoff is when you see heroes like Desmond and Woodley wearing things that were born on my living room floor on a laptop with my dog on my feet.

Everything else has evolved from the partnership and trust built from those endeavors, really. The Blockhams came together pretty quickly in November of ’11… I had done a comic before when I worked in the newspaper industry, so I had some experience with the process. As for the characters, I just sketched ‘em up as representatives of the fan base, and bounced them off of a few famous names like Tom and Rishi and MGoShoe to see what they thought of it. And it blossomed pretty fast.

When I got my first MGoShirts they were Zoltan: Space Emperor (of Space), the Woodson-Heisman shadow, and an original-run "Strike a Pose" for the wife, making her one of the first people to have one. This is how she came to tell Desmond Howard "you're wearing my shirt" that one time. Anyway as you read this see if you can guess which shirts of the ones pictured below were Six's and which were "Six Zero Style."

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Question from Seth:

We've seen it in the little "60" logo you put on your art, but just what does "Six Zero" mean?

I’ve been a hockey player for pretty much all of my life, and in the nineties I was getting pretty respectable—not Jim Lahey good, but one of the stars of the various leagues I played in. My whole life I had worn #6, but being that it was the The high-number craze peaked when Adam Oates chose 777777nineties, and everyone from Rick Tocchet to Radek Bonk was wearing high circus numbers, I wanted something that’d be uniquely mine, that no one else in the entire league would ever wear. Stupid, I know.

I remember bouncing back and forth between 46, 64, and 60 before settling on the latter. I’ve since gone back to the single #6, which looks pretty good on a left winger crashing the boards, if I do say so.

Anyways, a decade later, when I finally decided to stop becoming a reader and an actual member of the community, it just sounded right. It was also around the same time that I wished to create a brand name for my freelance pursuits, and so I slapped it on there as well.

Not gonna lie; we were kind of hoping you were a mini-mite blessed with endless guts, puckhandling skills and eligibility, who's devastatingly effective on the power play.

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Question from Brian:

Why isn't there a shaggy haired dog with glasses that speaks only MGoBlog quotes in the Blockhams? I mean, seriously.

The dog. Brian has no idea how ironic this actually is… I was gonna make the dog shaggy with black ears and have him constantly working on his ‘blog.’ Subtle, right? But there’s some show called Family Something with a dog named Brian, and I’m not a big fan of feeling unoriginal, so I backed off.

This doesn't matter! I am nothing like Family Guy! NOTHING!

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Question from Brian's bolded subconscious:

All of your interviewees had to answer so now it's your turn: How did you become a Michigan fan, and how did you find MGoBlog? (Please answer in Haiku and/or a CHART!!!)

It’s hard for me explain exactly what made me the Michigan fan I am today, but I can recall a few very specific events that made it happen. First of all, I remember being a boy some Saturday, and scrolling through the channels to find some football on. I don’t know what the date was, or even where it was being played, but I can very clearly remember seeing Jim Harbaugh roll out of the pocket in that crisp white jersey with the single-color numbered #4 and the Northwestern stripes, and that brilliant high-contrast helmet with the weird design and the stripes… and it just spoke to me. For a while I even thought it was Pittsburgh or something, because those are the kind of presumptions a kid makes growing up in Pennsylvania. But there was something about that image, that moment that I identified with, and although it would be years before anything came of it, a seed was planted.

Growing up in a Penn State family, we watched a lot of football, mostly NFL and the Nittany Lions. And I sort of saw myself as the black sheep or something, because I just didn’t want to be a Penn State fan. I remember shocking the world one night in ’86 when I announced I did NOT want to watch PSU play for the national title against Miami. As time went on, I felt this need to start watching college football Come, Six. Our pants will cover our ankles!more closely, because there was something about the fans and their devotion, something mythic and deeper than pro ball that piqued my curiosity. And I would need my own team to do that, and Penn State would not be it.

From there it was easy. As I learned about the sport, I learned—on my own, as a kid, mind you-- about the tradition of Michigan, the reputation of Schembechler football, the uniforms, the songs. It all spiked from there, and they were my de facto college team. But, I also became a ridiculous hockey junkie around the same time, so everything sort of took a back seat to the NHL. It wasn’t until college that I REALLY began to gorge myself on Michigan football.

In the late 90’s I became totally devoted to Michigan, culminating in that amazing season in 1997. By then my demand for relevant information became insatiable, and so I took to the Information Super.. something, mostly in the form of the official site and MLive.com. For several years MLive and The Wolverine became daily staples for me, and eventually each failed to quench my thirst for info on the team and its various efforts on and off the field.

One day I found this site called MGoBlog, and was amazed by the depths of fanaticism and loyalty. It was like I found some inner circle of UM addicts, and I was intimidated by them. Them and their vulture-like attacks on wrongly cited stats, their passionate soap-box rants, and their bizarre and exclusive humor. And I wanted to be like them.

For a year or two I perused the site occasionally, mystified and threatened and envious of people like ChiTownBlue, Dex and some guy named Brian. I remember the first time Brian actually recognized my presence during an online chat or something, and I felt like Tom Cruise buying into a higher level of Scientology or something. By the time Henne finished rubber-arming his way through a sloppy OSU game, I was reading the blog just about every day. And by the opening week of the Rich Rod era, I couldn’t stand it anymore. I signed up and the rest is history.

Helmet wings to Six Zero: "Join us, and together we will rule the Big Ten with pants that cover our ankles!"

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Question from Ace:

Which schools have offered you? Which are going after you the hardest right now?

Funny you should say that… in the process of shopping for my MFA in design. SCAD is the early frontrunner, but unless they offer me a full scholarship for t-shirt production it may not happen.

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Question from Heiko:

I have never once seen you run a bubble screen. Do you have something against this particular play?

I do not want to talk about that play. EVER. And that’s it.

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Question from Ace:

Talking about Michigan specifically, which coach has been in contact with you, and what's your impression of the coaching staff and the school?

Dude, it’s kinda crazy. The coaches pretend like I don’t even exist sometimes….?

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Question from Seth:

When I type in "Six Zero" in Google I get some weird stuff like  ladies scarf retailers, a London-based music management group, hockey jersey concepts, NSFW sexy Korean comedy, and the score of whatever crappy, defense-tastic SEC game happens to be on. Which of these are you, and which are someone trying to cash in on your hard-earned fame?

I can definitely say, at least in terms of my freelance ventures, I kinda wish I didn’t use ‘Six Zero.’ There’s a lot of Six Zero’s out there, even and especially in the design world. I actually have a custom logo that I often use for myself, and I’ve been thinking about re-branding my branding business under a new name. To be continued…

As for your above list, I’m the hockey jersey concepts. Done a lot of work for Icethetics.info and Puckdrawn.com. I even was a finalist for the Pensacola Ice Flyers logo a few years back, but lost out on what I think was some kind of backdoor deal between friends. I say that smugly because I think their logo is garbage.

6a01157061294d970b011571d4dfd2970b-800wi

I agree. This is sweet!

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Question from Brian's bolded subconscious:

Can you describe just what MGoBlog has meant to you? Please submit your answer in table or chart format (and supply Excel spreadsheet).

MGoBlog isn’t the official page of Michigan football. But it’s essentially the official page of the fan base, or at least its hardcore contingent, as far as I’m concerned. There are times it feels like an empire, and there are other times where it feels like an animal that has yet to fully mature. But when you look at how it has evolved in even the last few years, and how self-sufficient it has become, it’s very easy to believe that MGoBlog will become a part of Michigan sports culture and the fan experience for years to come.

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Obviously our generation(s) has been afforded the means to follow Michigan sports in ways that previous fan bases could never imagine, and that’s changed the entire experience of being a fan in general for both good and bad. The blog community makes the experience more individualistic, more single-player than ever before. Our father probably sat at the bar or in a pre-man cave arrangement, watching the game with his closest, most trusted friends on antenna cable or just shooting breeze on a two-week old victory. Men. Talking. (shudders)

Fast forward to now and the average MGoBlog user is tuning out his wife or his prof or whatever to log into the site and rant about team events that happened less than five minutes ago with people he doesn’t even know. It amazes me sometimes—I have friends here, people that I know—how they will react to things, what they will say and what they like and dislike—people that are good to me and watch my back and vice versa. And I’ve never even met them!! For some, I don’t even know their name—and most of them could walk right past me and I wouldn’t even know. And that’s a good thing, because we connect with people we’d otherwise never have access to.

Obviously it’s not all exclusive to MGoBlog. We’re moving more and more to a society where people thrive as anonymous, online-driven personalities, and the actual carbon-based life-forms we meet on a day-to-day basis are more like, I don’t know, alter egos. Our kids could conceivably live in a world of Clark Kents who don’t really show their true self until they log into their online community of choice.

Wait, what was the question??

Also, Excel is the second worst application ever. Ask the Shredder about what I think is worse.

Not touching that.

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Question from Ace:

If you had to scout yourself, what are your biggest strengths as a player blogger, and what are you looking to improve for your senior year and beyond?

Aha, knew this was coming—I always put this on everyone else, and now I have to take my own medicine. I have some say on what the site looks like and all that, but not in some maniacal take-over-the world way. It’s more like a client-freelance relationship, and I’m just trying to give Brian what he wants and help him realize that visually, or at least give him ideas. I’d like to think MGoBlog is more of a brand than it was before I got my hands on it, if that makes any sense. I’m not really on staff, but I kinda feel like I am. Sure, I can admit I’d like to be recognized as a part-timer or something, but things are working well the way it is, so whatever.

I also think I’ve found my voice in terms of posting, and I try to keep things lighthearted and optimistic. We all have unique perspectives on team events and wins and losses, and I enjoy getting philosophical on them from time to time. I remember the night after Tate-to-Mathews vs. ND ’09, and writing a small post about how, after the game, I went out to the back yard with my dog and, in the chilly autumn air, watched the sun set over the mountains in the West. I talked about the special magic that took place that day, and that despite being a couple hundred miles away, I felt like I was a part of it.

I’m settled down with all of the blessings and trappings of work and home and a young family, so I just don’t make it out very often anymore. But yeah, I feel a part of what happens in that football stadium, and I’d like to think that comes through in what I contribute to the blog.

We don't have jackets or anything so if you get a check… But don't tell Heiko that because we have him convinced there's a hazing process.

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Question from Brian:

Let's come back to the be-speckled, shaggy haired dog question. You do realize this would be hilarious right?

Yes, I do. I’ve kind of dropped the ball with the dog, Fielding—he’s long overdue for the spotlight. I planned on at least having the baby maul him and stuff, but neither of them are starring roles, unfortunately. Maybe I could kill the dog and replace him with Brian?

Excellent idea!

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Question from Seth:

After an epic game in 2010, Wife Day dropped off the Michigan schedule. Any truth to the rumor that Dave Brandon canceled this in favor of playing a Division II Mahjong Team at a neutral site?

Wife Day. Insanity.

It started out innocent enough, just a play on Brian’s previews and having a little fun at my own expense. But then it BLEW UP, which was kinda cool at first, reading some of the responses and then getting email from my inner circle of MGoFriends. But then, sometime the next day it got a little out of control, these dudes telling me what I need to do to score with my wife or just plain up talking about her. I didn’t care at all what anyone said about me, but I went out of my way to reinforce that the blog was not welcome to make jokes about my amazing spouse. Especially because our family got some bad news that very same day, and none of us really felt like laughing anymore.

Last year I got all kinds of questions about Wife Day II, and it was obvious that there’d be no topping it. So why try.

Brandon and I almost cut a deal for Wife Day, but only if I agreed to be followed around by a mascot all afternoon. And a man standing beside the dressing rooms playing 80’s arcade games on my phone is already too conspicuous for the management of Ann Taylor Loft the way it is, so it’s not likely to happen.

Brandon is altering the deal; pray he doesn't alter it any further.

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Question from Seth:

If you had just one chance to write the best diary ever or else the entire world would be vanquished by an intergalactic army of laser-wielding monkeys with wings, what would you choose for a lead graphic?

I’d draw, in vector format of course, Denard riding in on a dolphin with that cool unicorn-fart-gun with Lloyd Brady over one shoulder and Charlie Blockham on the other. He’d be wearing my banned Mike Martin Hulk Smash shirt. He wouldn’t use reins to guide the dolphin, he’d just punch it to get it to follow his wishes. And the dolphin would actually be riding LaMarr Woodley. And all of them would be mauling laser-wielding donkeys like an angry Jake Long.

I'm sorry, the correct answer was Denard riding a dolphin with a unicorn fart gun and Lloyd Brady on the LEFT shoulder and Charlie Blockham on the right. We salute our new winged monkey overlords.

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Question from Brian:

I mean seriously, the dog. You could have him look like me and bark out things like "I am a spread zealot no foolies!" This is not a question.

I’ve done talking dogs before. Funny thing is, it gives them too much presence. Like, when they’re NOT talking, you’re wondering why they’re NOT talking, or what they’re thinking. And besides, the temptation to draw Brian Cook the dog doing dog things, like sniffing his butt or humping furniture, would be VERY tempting.

I do not understand why you would be tempted to do this.

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Reader Question:
This comes from a user who asked to remain anonymous:

"Why haven't you profiled me yet?"

Well?

MGoProfile has been a big hit, much bigger than I originally anticipated it would be. The first profile and the entire concept was born literally in about twenty minutes in an email exchange between me and TomVH.

As for why I haven’t profiled XXXX yet… well, I think we set the bar pretty high early on with regards to who is profiled and how well they could turn it into something uniquely their own. Jamie Mac killed his, and Blue in South Bend’s was epic as well. So I feel a certain responsibility of who gets selected...  I'm fairly certain my own will fail to live up, haha.  It’s also extra work and I don’t always have time for it. In the summer of 2010 I did one every week, and it was really big, but then last year there was just a whole lot of changes in my family life that clearly made MGoProfile a low-priority affair. This year I’ve resigned myself to at least doing one per month during the offseason, which is still more work than you might think. As such, that’s not a lot of profiles, and so the slots fill up very quickly.

As for who gets the nods and when, it’s not really my choice anymore. I just try to fill the loudest demands. (Looks at Aquaman tellingly).

Actually this went pretty quickly except for the part where the profile-ee wants to micromanage the responses and format because it's his…heheheh

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Question from Heiko:

There's been a lot of talk on this site about pooping impossible things. Could you tell us what one should consume in order to excrete gold, rainbows, and/or magic? We don't cover that in med school.

I hate to say this… I recently grew up, and now fart jokes just don’t work anymore. I’m sorry. Be careful, kids, or this will happen to you too. Hopefully this helps, and thanks for taking the time to put all this together.

In all seriousness Six Zero has done an amazing job in helping MGoBlog establish a professional look and identity. Anywhere you find Michigan fans you'll see one of his shirts. From the page that loads with the iPhone app to the shirt store to the imagery inside Hail to the Victors and on so many pages of the blog itself, his artistic talent and skills make him an important part of our operation.

Comments

chunkums

April 20th, 2012 at 4:29 PM ^

I hate to say this… I recently grew up, and now fart jokes just don’t work anymore. I’m sorry. Be careful, kids, or this will happen to you too. Hopefully this helps, and thanks for taking the time to put all this together. Let me know if you need anything else.

They come out of your butt. How is that not funny?

BiSB

April 20th, 2012 at 4:38 PM ^

Six Zero... BEING interviewed? Dogs and cats living together. Mass hysteria.

But seriously folks, great interview. Glad to see Six getting some much-deserved props.

Erik_in_Dayton

April 20th, 2012 at 4:42 PM ^

 It was like I found some inner circle of UM addicts, and I was intimidated by them. Them and their vulture-like attacks on wrongly cited stats, their passionate soap-box rants, and their bizarre and exclusive humor. And I wanted to be like them. 

There is absolutely no shame in seeing a therapist.  My dad is a psychologist, in fact. 

profitgoblue

April 20th, 2012 at 4:47 PM ^

You know your idea has taken off when someone else takes the idea and turns it around on you.  Great MGoProfile.  Its always nice to know more about a poster, if only because it makes it harder to neg them.  So . . . when are you going to MGoProfile me?  (I could use the help to avoid all the negs I receive.)

 

profitgoblue

April 20th, 2012 at 5:08 PM ^

Embarrassingly (for both him and me), I'm sure that guy makes a LOT more money than me . . .

(I changed my avatar for two reasons:  I've quickly become a Barca fan and it seems appropriate to express that here, and maybe it will throw people off my scent for a while so they'll stop graying out my posts - it hurts my feelings.)

 

Wolverine In Exile

April 20th, 2012 at 5:01 PM ^

Great interview... in all seriousness my broomball team needs new jerseys for next yr's natl championship tournament. Dayton Frozen Ferrets. Montreal anadiens color scheme. Michigan alumns on my team. Go.

profitgoblue

April 20th, 2012 at 5:25 PM ^

I'm also curious as to how Six Zero obtained all the creativity ability . . .  Is it something he studied in school (learned) or is it something that has simply always been there (innate)?

 

salami

April 20th, 2012 at 6:15 PM ^

Where on earth can I get a Barwis' Gym tee? Simply bad-ass. I've checked the MgoStore and not there.

I'm guessing Barwis basically told you to cease & desist or he would grind you into sawdust between his index finger and thumb.

MGoBlogStore

April 20th, 2012 at 6:16 PM ^

...as it is impossible to top Lloyd Brady. Six is amazing, it's hard to find creative artists who are tuned in to the sports world, and we are lucky to have him on our side! 

Don't forget about THE KICK that he did for Phil Brabbs and CancerKicker.org (this one was actually very difficult and Six did it overnight

 

LSAClassOf2000

April 20th, 2012 at 7:26 PM ^

....and very comprehensive. A great profile of an MGoLegend around these parts. "The Blockhams" make staff meetings (with my superiors, that is) bearable and the shirts are the reason my wife finally conceded to having a separate MGoDrawer in the armoire. Six Zero's content has had a positive impact beyond the Internet. 

Jeff

April 20th, 2012 at 8:02 PM ^

I'm with you, Powerpoint is pretty bad.  Six Zero hates MS Paint though, so that's his thought.

What I want to know is why Excel is the 2nd worst application ever?  There a lot of annoying things about it but it's very very very useful.  What should I be using instead?

julesh

April 20th, 2012 at 9:06 PM ^

Personally, I think Numbers is more intuitive in a lot of ways, but I like both just fine. I can prove ridiculous points so much easier with Excel! But Powerpoint needs to die in a fire. Currently working on a terrible presentation that's made even worse by how horrible Powerpoint is. But I probably chose the wrong profession (marketing) if I hate Powerpoint.

Jeff

April 21st, 2012 at 1:55 AM ^

I've never heard of Numbers and am always willing to investigate new things but unfortunately it's a Mac program.

Have you ever heard of Prezi as an alternative to Powerpoint?  I just learned about it and have tried it out a little bit but not very extensively, yet.  All of my presentations have a lot of math so I use Latex and Beamer.  I don't think I've done any work in Powerpoint in about 5 years.

julesh

April 21st, 2012 at 9:40 AM ^

Prezi is pretty awesome, though not flawless. For the presentation I'm working on right now, I used Prezi for the midpoint, and it looked great. Unfortunately, it was decided that we wouldn't use Prezi for this one. (The reasoning was because I did all the work on it for the last one, and that wasn't fair, even though I was willing to do it again.)

Six Zero

April 20th, 2012 at 8:05 PM ^

Every time I go off the grid I miss something.  Thanks Seth and all of the staff.  And Brian, poor fellow.

In case he or anyone else failed to see it, here is today's Blockhams "Friday Rough" in his honor:

Obviously I feel compelled to say that not all of the above t-shirt designs are mine.  And out of all the ones I was not a part of, I sincerely wish I could say I came up with "Worst State Ever."  That's gold, Jerry.

As for ProfitGoBlue... actually a great question.  I've actually taught a lecture/discussion on that very topic, whether creativity is learned or innate.  When I have more time I'll give you my thoughts.

MaizeMN

April 21st, 2012 at 1:11 AM ^

...the dog talking to you too, Brian? Mine talks all the time. Maybe our dogs can be friends. Maybe we can be best friends, Our dogs want us to be best friends. Six Zero's dog doesn't talk (yet) but wants us ALL to be best friends.

MaizeMN

April 21st, 2012 at 1:11 AM ^

...the dog talking to you too, Brian? Mine talks all the time. Maybe our dogs can be friends. Maybe we can be best friends, Our dogs want us to be best friends. Six Zero's dog doesn't talk (yet) but wants us ALL to be best friends.

ILL_Legel

April 20th, 2012 at 8:26 PM ^

So many amazing people/characters here!  The top notch content and the unique personalities always make me feel like I haven't contributed enough to beveled guilt.  MGoBlog is even a part of family discussions.

My IT wife has everything set up so when we move to Shanghai in a couple of weeks I will still be able to spend my evenings perusing the site.

M-Wolverine

April 20th, 2012 at 10:19 PM ^

We were promised 2 profiles in March, and here it is late April and we're getting.... Him.

What I got from this-

Misopogon is so just using this to brag about how much he traded up in the wife department.

Brian asked all his questions after the surgery.

And somebody had a major screw up by not asking him if he could only have one meal, what would it be?

More seriously, as someone who actually has the banned Hulk shirt, and thinks the mascot design is just about iconic, (and believes he designed a kick ass hockey jersey), this is as good a place to thank Six Zero for all he contributes to our enjoyment. I'm sure the love outweighs any profit with all the work involved. He makes it more enjoyable for everyone.

And he made me feel like a SUPER-HERO for wasting all this time on the Internet, so he's got that going for him, which is nice.