Josh Linkner, Louis CK & The Power of “Why?”

December 11, 2011 — 0

Our new friend Josh Linkner stopped by last week.  Josh is a good dude; and with all the time I spend in Detroit, it’s a wonder it took us this long to meet.

We had this funny moment in the big board room.  Josh was being introduced to the group before his presentation, and we all started laughing, even Josh, about how long it was taking to just get the intro over with and let the man freakin’ talk.  That’s because mofo has done so much, and I’m not sure if he’s even 40 yet.  Por ejemplo: 

  • Founder, Chairman and former CEO of ePrize, the largest interactive promotion agency in the world providing digital marketing services for 74 of the top 100 brands.
  • Founder and CEO of three other successful technology companies
  • Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year
  • Detroit News Michiganian of the Year
  • President Barack Obama Champion of Change award recipient
  • Columnist for Fast Company and Inc. Magazine, and his work has been featured in The Wall Street Journal, Forbes, USA Today, and The New York Times
  • Berklee-trained professional jazz guitarist performing regularly in jazz clubs throughout the United States

See what I mean?

When I got home that night, my son asked what I did that day.  I tried to explain about Detroit Venture Partners, and that’s when the “Why” questions started flying:

D: “What’s a ‘venture partners’?”

Me: “A group of businesspeople who invest in companies, like startups.”

D: “Why?”

Me: “When someone has a great idea for a new business, they need funding to support it.”

D: “Why?”

Me: “You know, like, money to get the business going.”

D: “Why?”

Me: “I don’t know, like, office space.”

D: “Why?”

Me: “Because you can’t have your whole staff work in Starbucks.”

D: “Why?”

Me: “Because the city is struggling.  And there’s not a lot of free wifi in Detroit.”

D: “Why?”

Me: “Because of the economny in Detroit, the infrastructure, the crime.  Everything, really.”

D: “Why?”

Me: “Because the city is having an existential crisis.”

D: “Why?”

That’s when I stopped the conversation, told my son I needed to show my wife something, and played this clip that Josh showed in his presentation.  Watch it and you’ll get, um,  why


Crowdsourced Ice Cream Flavors At Brooklyn’s Ample Hills Creamery

October 9, 2011 — 0

I too lived—Brooklyn, of ample hills, was mine;
I too walk’d the streets of Manhattan Island, and bathed in the waters around it;
I too felt the curious abrupt questionings stir within me,
In the day, among crowds of people, sometimes they came upon me,
In my walks home late at night, or as I lay in my bed, they came upon me.

– from Crossing Brooklyn Ferry by Walt Whitman

Ample Hills Creamery, the new ice cream shop in Prospect Heights, Brooklyn, is packed every single day.  We finally went with the boys, and we discovered the shop’s open call for ice cream flavor names and ingredient ideas.  Some are pretty rad:

Dash’s favorite: “Tooth Decay”

Theo’s favorite: “Bacon & Eggs”


Best Hot Dogs In Park Slope: Bark

September 2, 2011 — 1

Dash and I finally made it to Bark this week.  We chowed down on some hot dogs, fries and shakes.  Bark’s website even lets you track where each ingredient comes from.

While there, Dash wrote a letter to his new teacher, telling her about our summer.  Then he drew his hot dog…

Here’s the finished piece, a classic claasic:





UPDATE: My Son & His Cousins Make More Promos For MTV’s “Dudesons In America”

May 23, 2010 — 0

Thanks for so many emails from fans of the first homemade DUDESONS IN AMERICA promos my son, Dash, and his cousins, Rui and Owen, made.

Johnny Knoxville, who discovered the Dudesons and brought them to America, must be proud to have given 7 year-olds a show that doubles as an excuse for breaking shit and causing havoc.

The new series (THURSDAYS AT 10PM ON MTV) has becoming a rallying cry–“Dudesons In America!”–for destroying stuff. Dudesons, be proud…


Poem By My Son When He Was 5

April 27, 2010 — 0


I love you in the house and over the roof.

I love you outer space.

I love you under the fence and over the room.

I love you in the bushes and out the grass.

I love you in the machine and out the door.

I love you in the drawer and out the light.

I love you stuck behind the door
and stuck behind the pillows
and under the covers.

I love you in the cave.

I love you in the ear and out the mouth.

I love you infinity.

– by Dashiell Martin, age 5


My Son & His Cousins Make Promos For The New MTV Show “Dudesons In America”

April 17, 2010 — 0

Thanks to Johnny Knoxville, there’s a new JACKASS, and it’s called DUDESONS IN AMERICA. On a recent trip out west, my son and his cousins took it upon themselves to make some promos for the new series.

Here’s Owen, fearless…

As you can see, this basically turned into an excuse to pummel the guy with the camera (me)…

My own son, Dash, with no regard for the human body…

Seen enough? You can watch the real trailer for DUDESONS IN AMERICA, here.

I’ll close with a letter of introduction from Johnny Knoxville himself:

The Dudesons are four Finnish f***tards who have come to the US of A to pursue the American dream. Of course, their idea of pursuing the American dream is to do even more stupid crap here than they did back home. Best friends since childhood, The Dudesons have spent their lives performing and documenting on film ingeniously idiotic stunts and pranks. This series will follow these four nimrods as they try to ASS-immilate into our culture by doing the dumbest things imaginable. Can The Dudesons get along with their American neighbors or will their non-stop f-ing around only make the culture clash worse?

Lucky for The Dudesons, they are as lovable as they are nuts, and they are counting on that charm to win over local townsfolk and whatever authorities they’ll most assuredly encounter. Watch as the boys try to reach Mars with their own self-built space rocket. Come giggle as the boys try to become cowboys by milking a bull. As an over-optimistic stunt man myself, I think The Dudesons are going to take American by storm. They’re hilarious, they got balls, and their hearts are bigger than their brains.

Sincerely and Love,
Johnny Knoxville