Carlo Montagnino

Carlo Montagnino is a ronin, web developer, cat fancier, shut-down defenceman, annunaki, husband, hunk, zen-satanist, nhl insider, coffee snob, and eater of emotions. #goutlife

Very little about me

For as few hours-per-day as possible, I build highly visible and very important webpages for one of the largest retailers in the United States. When I get home (via my own personal cruise ship) I juggle my time between yard work, the New York Rangers, and making cool webpages for all my cool ideas.

Before I decided to sell you clothing online, I ran a mildly successful website, co-owned a boutique web development firm in my home town of Staten Island, and consulted some of the biggest brands in publishing. I've literally literally (not a typo) worked on every aspect of websites at every level, of all scales, styles, and purposes.

While the things I make are diverse, I'll always find a way to present them online. Lately I've been screwing around with my cracked version of Fruity Loops again, editing an online-available version of The Hagakure, and trying to find an idea for another twitter bot.

If, for whatever reason, you want to contact me, you can find me on twitter, but I'd prefer it if you emailed I'm on AIM during the day, but I'll let you figure out what my handle is.

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Carlo Montagnino


July 13, 2014

Possible Vandalism on Twitter


Inspired by the recent wave of twitter accounts based on Parliament Edits, I began looking into making my own version for Staten Island’s governmental buildings. As I was trying to think of a way to get the IP range of these buildings, I figured that knowing when Wikipedia is anonymously edited by someone is pointless. Sure, the occasional staffer might be revealed to make their employer look a little better, but ultimately, who cares if a security guard like to proofread Lists of Lists?

What’s more interesting to me is Wiki-Vandalism. So I decided to track the feed of edits marked as “potential vandalism”. As someone who has vandalized Wikipedia (for lols and lulz), I know that usually these edits are funny and sometimes offer a ton information about the vandal or the item whose article is being vandalized.

This feed is published to the Possible Vandalism twitter account.

July 10, 2014

Understanding Millennials (or any other youth generation) is...

Understanding Millennials (or any other youth generation) is very simple: A Quick Guide

First one needs to understand that despite all niches and subcultures there are two primary cultures. One that is interested in “high culture” and one that is interested in “low culture”. Please note that I am using “high” and “low” not as a value judgement, but as a distinction. There is no “better” just different.

Secondly, make a product that appeals to one of these cultures in the broadest sense. Bud Light or Duvel. Pitbull or Lorde. Transformers or The Fault in Our Stars. It’s important to know that the actual quality of these products matters very little so long as the air of a particular culture exists.

Once you can potentially appeal to 50% of the planet, calibrate your marketing to maximize your profit.

In terms of marketing to youth groups (like Millennials, Gen X, Hippies/Baby Boomers, etc), it should have a tinge of subversiveness to cater to their instinctual process of questioning the generation or two before them. Did their parents fight in a war? Make your product appeal to peace. Did their parents have a free-spirit? Your product should be stringent. Were their parents rich? Show how your product is “of the streets”. You get the idea.

This is very simple. Remember, "The greatest trick the Devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn’t exist." Which is why we have corporations telling us how they “don’t understand youth culture”. They do, very well, obviously.

July 9, 2014

Catching up: 2014 Vol 1

Tonight I played Golf, it was video game golf, but I’m playing more. Friday afternoon I (in real life) play my second round of 18 holes this summer. I’m excited because I like playing golf. I need golf shoes. And a glove. Shoes first. Then new clubs. Oh and a shirt. And shorts.

I’ve spent a great deal of time researching how to get all my wacky websites displayed on a wall, and then Chris showed me this and I couldn’t be happier. I’m pledging to this Kickstarter for one, maybe two of these screens. I had a grief email exchange with Josh?, Jake? who is behind the project and I’m happy to know that I’ll be able to submit my work to their ecosystem. It’s an app-store-like environment where you download art onto your screen via a phone app. I’m looking forward to this.

I need to put aside a day one weekend and paint the hallway make myself this hat that will prevent aliens from communicating with or controlling me. Basically, you take an aviation hat and tape (yes tape) 7 or so layers of this super-insulated material to the inside. It’s pretty intense.

Things to buy: This shirt, this book, these sunglasses, and these shoes.

Question: Stay the course and wait for a promotion at a steady job, or jump ship for a butt-load of money?

I need hockey season to start again ASAP. This season I begin my mission to visit every NHL team’s arena. I’m also catching the last ever Rangers/Isles game to be played in Nassau Coliseum. That’s really cool. Other potential Rangers road games I’m seeing: Boston, Carolina, Buffalo, Washington, Philadelphia. I’ll probably hit up 2 of these.

I have this stupid newsletter account thing and I have no subscribers. So I’ve written nothing. I have nothing to write, Don’t subscribe to it else you’ll force me to figure something out.

Things I’ve made this quarter year: AWESOME FLYING DRAGONS, CAT VORTEX,

Things I need to continue doing: SCAN PORTRAITS

Things I need to finish soon: HAGAKURE

Things I need to start: #GOUTLIFE MANUAL

June 7, 2014

Hockey and the Hagakure

I’m an avid hockey fan, and it’s recently been pointed out to me that my high-level interests in hockey coincide with my high-level interests in The Hagakure.

When one has made a decision to kill a person, even if it will be very difficult to succeed by advancing straight ahead, it will not do to think about going at it in a long roundabout way. One’s heart may slacken, he may miss his chance, and by and large there will be no success. The Way of the Samurai is one of immediacy, and it is best to dash in headlong.

This pull from the Hagakure applies also to hockey. Well, let’s equate murder with scoring a goal, because, obviously.

Here’s another.

armor and equipment that are showy can be seen as being weak and having no strength. By them one can see through the wearer’s heart.

There are plenty of guys on the rink who have the “sickest gear” and whatnot. They are typically plugs (sucky players who are overcompensating) or puck hogs, playing out of ego. Neither contributing anything to the team.

Being a retainer is nothing other than being a supporter of one’s lord, entrusting matters of good and evil to him, and renouncing self-interest. If there are but two or three men of this type, the fief will be secure…

Loyalty is said to be important in the pledge between lord and retainer. Though it may seem unobtainable, it is right before your eyes. If you once set yourself to it, you will become a superb retainer at that very moment.

Here we can clearly see a correlation between “retainers supporting their lord” and players buying into their coaches system.

In one’s life, there are levels in the pursuit of study. In the lowest level, a person studies but nothing comes of it, and he feels that both he and others are unskillful. At this point he is worthless. In the middle level he is still useless but is aware of his own insufficiencies and can also see the insufficiencies of others. In a higher level he has pride concerning his own ability, rejoices in praise from others, and laments the lack of ability in his fellows. This man has worth. In the highest level a man has the look of knowing nothing.

This is very close to my path in growing as a hockey player (and in most other arenas of my life.

By thinking that you must complete the job you will run out of time. By considering things like how many men the enemy has, time piles up; in the end you will give up. No matter if the enemy has thousands of men, there is fulfillment in simply standing them off and being determined to cut them all down, starting from one end. You will finish the greater part of it…

Above all, the Way of the Samurai should be in being aware that you do not know what is going to happen next, and in querying every item day and night. Victory and defeat are matters of the temporary force of circumstances. The way of avoiding shame is different. It is simply in death…

Even if it seems certain that you will lose, retaliate. Neither wisdom nor technique has a place in this. A real man does not think of victory or defeat. He plunges recklessly towards an irrational death. By doing this, you will awaken from your dreams.

I think you all see where I’m getting at here.

June 2, 2014

Carpenter Bee

About a month ago, my father and I expanded deck that comes off of my kitchen into my back yard. All the important stuff is done (except for replacing the steps, which will break soon), but when I asked about staining it, my father told me to wait a year.

A year?

Apparently, treated wood needs to “wash out” it’s treatment (which is really just a bath of waterproofer and some other chemicals to prevent rot while on a Home Depot shelf). If stained before the wood is washed out, the treatment will bleed through the stain and ruin it. We don’t want that.

So my unstained, 85% completed deck is where I spend most of my weekend, and weekdays I decide I need to work from home. I bring my coffee, beer, cigarettes, and laptop out and do what I got to do. Since I’ve poisoned all of the soil and plants in my yard, there are few if any bugs (minus the gnats hanging out around the festering compost heap) to annoy me while I vibe out into the deep dark night. Except one.

Because of my unstained deck, a carpenter bee has decided to make it his literal life’s work to burrow a hole in the railing directly next to me cafe table and chair. He’s been at it for 3 weeks, and shows little signs of stopping. I’ve done everything I could without killing it, and it keeps coming back to the exact same hole and chews and chews and chews. It’s obnoxious.

Today I made my final attempt before I make the decision to murder it.

While in it’s hole I chased the bee away with a swift punch to the wood. The vibrations rattled it out of it’s potential nest and buzzing in a circle around my head. he then vanished into the cover of the trees. I figured I had bought myself some time, and I ran inside to get the leftover RAID I had from when I was playing Border Patrol in my old apartment with what seemed like an endless horde of roaches. I filled the now vacant hole with the poison in hopes it would at best deter the bee, at worst confuse it enough to find another spot to dig.

As I put the can down I saw the bee at the other end of the deck, upset about what I just did. I took my sandal off and swung it at the bee, hoping to knock it away from my deck. I missed and he charged back, right into another whip of my heavy rubber and leather paddle. The thud was sickening yet satisfying. I had won the battle.

As I type this now, the bee has returned. I’m watching from the air conditioned comfort of my kitchen, as it searches for it’s hole. It hasn’t found it yet. If it does, I’ll kill it.

BTW: Have you ever seen a carpenter bee? They are huge.

June 1, 2014

The Hagakure

The Hagakure is billed as “a practical and spiritual guide for a warrior, drawn from a collection of commentaries by the samurai Yamamoto Tsunetomo”. While I am not a “warrior”, nor do I know many, this text holds a significant place in my life.

I was an apprentice of sorts when I first read this book roughly 10 years ago, and it taught me a great deal about loyalty, self-respect, and approaching life with meaning, even if that meaning isn’t always what you want. It’s a very zen minded book, without being “about zen”.

A lot of the criticism of the text is that it’s the late-in-life ramblings of a never-was. A non-warrior griping about how warriors should live. And I totally get that, but since I’m not a warrior, I can allow my self to apply the lessons within to my own life.

I recently re-read the Hagakure and decided that I would like to have a better experience with the actual reading of it. Until now I’ve had the same .pdf file sitting on my laptop/phone. It’s formatted poorly and contains no context (neither footnotes nor explanations of the historical figures and stories mentioned, exist). I translated the .pdf into HTML and decided to create my own edition of the text.

I still have a lot of work to do, in terms of contextualizing chapters 6-11, creating note-taking abilities, sharing quotes, bookmarking, and writing a foreword along with some other copy. I’m diligently working on this project, and expect a mostly-useable version to be ready in a few weeks.