"" bshawise: December 2009

Thursday, December 31, 2009

Christmas Show Videos

Here's the short film, picture book animation and the flashmob videos from this year's Christmas Show.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Playing Catch: part one

It's been almost a week since we put on The Christmas Show (it'll be online if you missed it). All in all, I am quite pleased. I've been thinking how to blog about a few thoughts bouncing around my head since the show. I've decided to do a series of posts. If you were around for the Tadpole series, it'll feel like that probably.

The idea for this series came after trying to make a bunch of fortune cookie statements about my learnings from this year's show. One of them was something like, "Collaboration is the most productive and rewarding action we can take in life." I believe that to be true. And if you know me, you know I like to use/mix metaphor(s) when describing things. My main metaphor in this series will be using the game of catch to describe collaboration. Enough set up, let's begin.

Good collaboration is like a good game of catch. When I was a kid, I all but lived to play catch with my dad. He was a football coach and he played college football. I remember honestly believing that if he wanted to he could punt the ball and hit an airplane. So we'd play catch after he got home from practice, we'd play on the weekends at halftime of the OSU game, we'd play after church, and the ultimate was playing under the lights before the pre-game warm ups on Friday nights. For whatever reason, there's something magical about catch. If you don't cry in Field of Dreams at the moment you are pure robot.

Catch almost always begins with one person's idea. In my case, it was usually me saying to my dad, "Let's play catch." Catch sucks with just one person. So I had to find someone who could help me execute my idea. And many times I had to cast a little vision in order to convince my dad. "Let's play catch. After dinner. We can do it in the backyard in the shade and it'll awesome and I'll catch every pass and c'mon what do you say, let's play catch."

So the very first rule in collaboration is once you have the idea you have to find your partner. This is easier said than done. In the game of catch I never once asked my mom to play. She would've been more than willing and available. She would've even tried really hard. But she sucks at catch. A good idea can die prematurely if you pick the wrong collaborator. A good idea can also die if you don't cast the appropriate vision. You have to know the person you're asking and the situation they're in. I often knew my dad was hungry, tired and sick of being in the sun. So I knew we needed dinner and shade for catch to be a possibility.

Picking the right collaborator and casting the appropriate vision factored into my initial steps toward collaboration in The Christmas Show. Sometimes I succeeded and sometimes I fell on my face. I won't go into specifics because I don't think it's applicable. But my point is, you really need to think thru who you ask to play catch. If you're tossing around the idea of starting a business, buying a house, experimenting with a new hobby, whatever, this first step of who you ask to help is crucial. So many factors go into the choice. For me, when I ask people to collaborate with me on creative projects I think about their experience/expertise, their availability, their track record (can I trust them?). I can't ask someone to help just because their available and interested. They have to know how to _______ and I have to know I can trust them to deliver. These factors have to be thought thru before the project starts. Nothing worse than starting that game of catch and realizing your available and interested partner throws like a girl.

The other reality is that oftentimes, the person you're asking to help doesn't see in themselves what you see. So they may think they don't have the level of expertise you need. Or they may not feel they have the availability. This is when you have to cast the appropriate vision and be willing to begin collaborating even in the idea stage. I'll give you a specific example. I wrote the script for the heaven animation portion of the show. I immediately when to Mark and Lay and asked, "Can we do this?" They read the script and said no. It needed to be simplified. So I rewrote the script and went back and asked, "How bout now?" They said yes, kind of. We then went back and forth brainstorming ways to do the animation that was up to our standards and possible in our timeframe. We came up with a style and a tentative schedule. We tweaked as we went along. They were the right collaborators from the start. But if I weren't willing to adapt my idea and figure out ways for the project to fit into their schedule, skill set, etc. it never would've happened.

Find the right people to play catch and be willing to play after dinner in the shade. That's step one.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Reading, Ohio Represent

I love Reading, OH. I love Tony Pike and the Cats. I love Skyline. This photo is everything right with America.


Posted via email from Brad's posterous

Thursday, December 24, 2009


We shared memories, Segway and me. Today we went our separate ways. Maybe some day when I'm filthy rich we'll be reunited. Until then...

Posted via email from Brad's posterous

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Young Forever

We listened to this song at least four times on the drive home from Pittsburgh after the Bearcats' big win. It's been my jam since then. The video does the song justice for sure.

Monday, December 14, 2009

The Christmas Show

This year the Christmas Show will unwrap the nativity story on stage and screen. Six characters in six different art forms and styles that will work together to give you a fresh perspective on the nativity story. A mix of humor, drama, dance, original music and perhaps a couple streamer-launching cannons. tix.vineyardcincinnati.com

Friday, December 11, 2009


Download now or watch on posterous
IMG_0235.MOV (4174 KB)

Click download to watch my friends practice the dance in this window.


Posted via email from Brad's posterous

Dear Brian Kelly

Dear BK,

Part of me wants you to know that you're a big turd. I can't wait for your press conference where you'll talk about how you had to put your family first. I feel you, man. It must've been hard living on millions of dollars in a city that adores you. Things will clearly be better in some hick town in Indiana. The hub of impatient, self-righteous, rich white people. You're so selfless for moving your family to these greener acres.

All of me understands why'd you leave. It's the "how" that really bothers people with feelings. And all of me marvels at your rise to success. You clearly had a plan and man...you freaking did it. You're at the top. Ish. Nostalgia holds a powerful grip on this country of ours. So you're at the "top" because of conservative America's golden memories. Hurry up and win every game ever though. Those memories are burning holes in billionaires' pockets.

I have two hopes for you. One, I think I hope you succeed. For a few moments yesterday I wanted that Indiana black hole to swallow you up. But this morning, I don't think want that. I really am fascinated to see you work your magic. My main hope is that your magic turns into class. I hope your words become true and mean something. I hope the politician in you becomes a person. A person who garners others' trust and learns how to protect such a precious gift. Then you really will be on top.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

ND, think twice about Brian Kelly

Dear Notre Dame,

So uh...so you need a coach. We all saw that coming the first time Big Chuck waddled out in those khakis. I'm no expert when it comes to hiring coaches. But I did hear you're using a search committee, so you're clearly open to suggestions. I have a few.

#1. You don't want Brian Kelly 'cause he's all smoke and mirrors. He's Sigfreid and Roy. He's the David Blaine of success. You think he's levitating towards championships and coach of the year awards but really he's just...well, he's winning championships and coach of the year awards. But he's a trickster and a cheater. Check behind the curtain. You'll find a swindler with a sneaky suitcase full of sneaks.

#2. You don't want Brian Kelly 'cause he will bring super dumb kids to your super intelligent halls of education. Only dummies play sports good. Smarties are too busy thinking about debate club practice to run routes well, etc. Brian Kelly wants to poison your school with stupid. He thinks you can't win with your academic standards being so high. The days of genius quarterbacks like Ron Pawlus are gonzo he says. Don't let this remedial coach tarnish your untouchable, remarkable, enviable, out-of-this-worldable image of excellence. Keep that golden dome shiny and smart. Keep the articulate, well-spoken scholars in the locker room. Like it was when Dr. Lou was at the helm.

#3. BK is clearly over doing it with the Whoppers at his namesake. He's practically doubled in size since coming to the Nati. You know firsthand what a Biggie sized coach does to team morale. It's squashes it. Add to that BK's notorious desire for expansion and you have a Stay Puft Marshmallow situation on your hands.

#4. Dr. Lou should come back wearing the #45. Have you seen his pep talks? If yes, then you know what to do. If not, prepare to get pepped up in a big way. I'll design your tshirts for free. The Doctor Is Back In.

Monday, December 7, 2009


My brother wrote a great blog here about our weekend in Pittsburgh. The whole trip was his idea. Months ago he randomly said, "We should go to the Pitt game." At first I was like riiiiiiiight. But then I started thinking about it. I pitched it to friends and it gained traction.

Everyone says things like this all time. And then for a little while get excited by their potential. But typically, we'll generate a list of reasons to kill the idea and we'll wax nostalgic about the would've, could've, should've. I am so unbelievably thankful that we ignored that list this time. It was an experience that we'll talk about for years. In the third quarter when it wasn't looking good for the Cats I thought to myself about how I didn't really care if they lost. The sum of the weekend's parts were greater than the result of the game. I really felt that. Don't get me wrong, winning is great. It made the ride home much better. But it's just a game. It really is. And if we change our perspective, the games can be an excuse to share experiences with your friends. That's the real good stuff. I know Fuller is going to rip on this post. But whatever, he's an angry old man.

That all said, I'm excited to share the experience of watching Tim Tebow cry on Jan. 1. That's gonna be sugar sweet.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Dr. Lou

I dare you to find a better 3ish minute segment on television than Dr. Lou. Actually, I take that back. I don't want you wasting a whole day on a pointless wild goose chase.

Thursday, December 3, 2009


I'm certain I don't understand this video yet. But for the past couple months this ditty has been my "theme song" of sorts. Miss Jackson and I sing it on our walks. True.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Thought Pop

Over the weekend someone came into my office and told me they wanted to be in the Christmas Show. This person was baffled when I said there weren't any spots open. He/she was also uninterested in helping backstage or being a part of future videos. This someone was only interested in the biggest spotlight we have. I found this quite frustrating on numerous levels.

But then today, as I tore down the stage, a thought popped through my head. I do the same thing with God. I want _____ and I kind of just want it now. I'm not interested in paying my dues or getting a different version of ______. I want what I want now and I'm baffled when I don't get it. He must find that quite frustrating. On numerous levels.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Yesterday, dummy.