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1) NEVER write or draw just for the hell of it.

2) Stay digital. Virtual experience is way COOLEST.

3) Don't ever wonder what it might be like living in another culture.

4) Beat yourself up CONSTANTLY. You're mediocre at BEST.

5) NEVER take a break.

6) NEVER sing in the shower

7) AVOID new music, food and people.

8) Stay closed. An open heart is for SUCKERS.

9) Screw feed back. Who cares what other souls might contribute?

10) Trash any original ideas IMMEDIATELY!

11) Don't spend any time mastering a skill. Who needs THAT headache?

12) Eschew visiting any new places. Toxic shit lurks EVERYWHERE (except where you

13 ) NEVER count your blessings.

14) Obey all the established, sure-fire rules.

Now go out there and be NOBODY!

Comments (11)

Dr. Bob:

Really good list, John. And it applies to damn near everything.

Please do not do any of them!

Creativity is NOT overrated!

John Cox:

Hey Dr Bob
Glad you got the spirit of it. Hope it rattles a few people I know.


Great List! But But But John...you should have run it down from 14 to 1... How old fashioned....unhip. Get an audience man!


Biggest killers for me are:

(1) Rushing
(2) Interruptions
(3) Constant distraction (chaos, CUBICLES)

It's good to slow down & be alone--but when work is over, leave the isolation behind.

John Cox:

Hey T
Good reminders

Hey Cowboy
Ooooooh....so close.


At my job,
they don't
pay me to think.
...but they can't
stop me!

Dr. Bob:

TJ; Very good.

Ya know, we teach children to color within the lines and to do it this way or that way and to follow rules regardless of whether they make sense, then we wonder why they aren't creative as adults.

John Cox:

Hey Dr Bob

American schooling produces consumer robots. Use more, make more, use more, make more... If indeed I am one, I certainly can't tell.

Neat, huh?


I think "coloring within the lines" has gotten a bad wrap. You should be able to know what the rules are and be able to follow them before you can make a good determination on which ones to break and how cool things look when you do.

John Cox:

Hey Doug
Fine point. May I suggest social rules benefit order, community. Aesthetic rules are merely a STARTING point. Creative thinking starts where convention ends.

T again:

"Coloring between the lines" is fine. It's the shuffling through queues because "they" say so--the regimentation of the bells--the what-to-think not how-to-think domestication that's the problem.

Of course certain guidelines are necessary--but when they're arbitrary & for the sole benefit of the administrators, I'm out.


John Cox is a painter, cartoonist, and illustrator for hire. For information about purchasing existing work or commissioning new work, contact him by e-mail at john555cox [at] hotmail.com.

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