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vol 6 - issue 06 (feb 2004) :: untapped
UNTAPPED TALENT: DUSTIN GROVEMILLER
interview by d.j. kirkbride
illustration by shane hillman

DUSTIN GROVEMILLER IS A SASSY, RED-HEADED BITCH BOY FROM THE MIDDLE OF OHIO. A WHILE BACK, HE STARTED AN ONLINE PUBLICATION CALLED THE FOOTNOTE WITH A FAT FUCK WHO SOON LEFT HIM HIGH AND DRY TO MOVE TO MILWAUKEE,.. MORE ON THAT LATER. UNDETERRED, DUSTIN CONTINUES WRITING FOR AND EDITING THE FOOTNOTE, AS WELL AS MAINTAINING THE SITE. ALL WITH LITTLE HELP FROM THE FAT FUCK WHO STARTED THE THING WITH HIM. HE ALSO HAS A LOVELY SINGING VOICE. OUR OWN D.J. KIRKBRIDE HAD AN INSTANT MESSAGE INTERVIEW WITH DUSTIN TO SEE WHAT HIS DEAL IS.

Dustin says: (5:58:03 PM) I have just about fallen out of my chair.

D.J. says: (5:58:17 PM) What the shit?

Dustin says: (5:58:21 PM) Just now, I received a submission for the footnote from someone I've never heard of, and it came to the submissions@thefootnote.com address! Know anyone named Erica?

D.J. says: (5:59:01 PM) No. I don't know girls.

Dustin says: (5:59:09 PM) Holy shit.

D.J. says: (5:59:11 PM) Hey, can this be the beginning of our interview?

Dustin says: (5:59:26 PM) Does it work for an opening?

D.J. says: (5:59:30 PM) Yeah. I love it.

Dustin says: (5:59:34 PM) I'm never good with the openings.

D.J. says: (5:59:45 PM) You just have to make sure they're lubed up enough. Then start off nice and easy.

Dustin says: (6:00:00 PM) Right, right. Erica, I dedicate this interview to you, for you are the first unsolicited submission I've ever gotten.

D.J. says: (6:00:45 PM) Beautiful.

Dustin says: (6:00:52 PM) Are you going to fix my crappy grammar?

D.J. says: (6:00:59 PM) Yeah. I'll try. Mine, too. So, I have no questions prepared.

Dustin says: (6:01:25 PM) Oh, this ought to be a scream then.

D.J. says: (6:01:32 PM) A "scream"! Look, duder, we'll chat, and you reply how you want. Be as "verbose" as you'd like. And if I don't ask you something you want to talk about, just bring it up, okay?

Dustin says: (6:01:52 PM) Okay. I can probably do that. This is the first time I've been interviewed, you know.

D.J. says: (6:02:26 PM) This is the first time I've ever interviewed someone I've had drunken sex with.

Dustin says: (6:02:41 PM) Uh,.. are you sure you've got the right interviewee here? No, seriously, I've never been interviewed,.. except for maybe an article or two in the local papers when I was young.

D.J. says: (6:02:47 PM) For being a boy genius?

Dustin says: (6:02:56 PM) Nah. For choir stuff. I was always doing the music thing, even when I was younger.

D.J. says: (6:03:27 PM) Sweet! We'll get to that. We'll have to wait for the other to finish, but if some stuff is out of order, I'll fix it.

Dustin says: (6:03:44 PM) What other?

D.J. says: (6:03:54 PM) Huh?

Dustin says: (6:04:26 PM) "We'll have to wait for the other to finish,..."

D.J. says: (6:04:59 PM) Oh, like, when we type over each other, then stuff is all out of order, and we're replying to things the other person's already moved on from. Stuff like that.

Dustin says: (6:05:09 PM) Oh, right. I'm just assuming you'll sort it out and take what you want.

D.J. says: (6:05:23 PM) Yeah. I will. I'm lazy, though.

Dustin says: (6:05:35 PM) And I trust you not to take things hideously out of context.

D.J. says: (6:05:43 PM) Heh, heh, heh. Okay.

Dustin says: (6:06:05 PM) Right.

D.J. says: (6:06:16 PM) So, you're the grand poobah and head dragon of the world famous website the footnote, correct? Dustin Grovemiller?

Dustin says: (6:07:07 PM) Well, possibly. I might be someone that's claiming to be him, and I've just gone and killed him earlier today. Probably not, though.

D.J. says: (6:07:15 PM) Jesus Christ!

Dustin says: (6:07:24 PM) I'm too much of a pacifist. Or lazy.

D.J. says: (6:07:30 PM) Pacifism = lazy. You know, you'd then be only the second murderer tastes like chicken has ever interviewed.

Dustin says: (6:07:46 PM) The first being?

D.J. says: (6:07:53 PM) Charlie Manson. I know, I know. He didn't do the actual "killing" or whatever. Whatever. Delightful guy.

Dustin says: (6:09:00 PM) Ah. Well, I don't want to play second fiddle to him, so we'll forget about that "I killed Dustin" stuff. Yes, I am Dustin. And did you call the footnote "world famous"? You need to get out a little more.

D.J. says: (6:09:30 PM) The outside is dangerous and scary. I avoid it whenever possible. Okay, so maybe not "world famous". Maybe,.. uh,...

Dustin says: (6:09:40 PM) Not even Ohio, man.

D.J. says: (6:09:44 PM) Workplace famous? I mean, people you work with read it, right?

Dustin says: (6:10:17 PM) Not that I know of. I think I'm happier if they don't know that yet. They already think I'm a little crazy.

D.J. says: (6:10:34 PM) Feh. Poco loco. Well, let's try and get the word out, ya wee spotty red-headed bastard. Tell the tastes like chicken readers about the footnote.

Dustin says: (6:13:31 PM) Well, it's kind of the product of the minds of yours truly and one of my buddies from the post-college era of my life. We were both writing material on our own and sending it out via email. No luck getting it published in other places, really, so we decided to publish ourselves. We're so sneaky like that. So the concept was born. The name came later in the process.

D.J. says: (6:14:21 PM) Really? Who was this no doubt handsome and intelligent and non-sexually ambiguous "buddy" of yours? This fucking VISIONARY?

Dustin says: (6:16:14 PM) Well, that answer is "D.J.", but now it doesn't make sense with how you described yourself. Besides, you moved to Milwaukee, thus setting back a creative partnership that could've dominated pop culture. You're dead to me, you know?

D.J. says: (6:16:29 PM) Ohhh,.. you're talking to a dead man. A ghost. Ahem. Sorry. What kinda stories you (we) got on that there the footnote? Who writes for ya (us)?

(This is a weird way to do an interview. While Dustin is typing his reply, I just checked out thehun.com and found this really cool clip of Heather Graham getting railed on the floor! Gonna have to rent whatever flick this is from. Man, it's like a porn movie! Crazy world. Oop! Dustin is replying.)

Dustin says: (6:20:27 PM) Well, it's an interesting mix of columns right now. I'd say there are two distinct personalities to the publication. One is kind of wordy, a little dry, and certainly has an academic feel to the humor. That'd be me, my friend Laura Goodman, whom I met in college, and my sister, Heather Grovemiller, when she's ambitious enough to write. The other side of the coin is made up by material more in the vein of Kevin Smith-- dick and fart jokes-- but it's still really "smart" stuff. That'd be the folks like you, Tadd Branum, and Fingers O'Reilly-- who contributed to the January issue of tastes like chicken, oddly enough. And a sports column by one Mr. Cousy Kane.

D.J. says: (6:21:13 PM) Hey, you said our stuff was "smart"! How kind.

Dustin says: (6:21:32 PM) It was in quotations. Don't take it at face value.

D.J. says: (6:21:38 PM) Like Phil Collins? Poop on your crap. Okay, so, you run the footnote, design the site and all that, reign in the regular columnists, and keep us all fluffed. Is it fun?

Dustin says: (6:23:39 PM) Oh, absolutely. I'm doing it all for free, so it must be fun, right? Otherwise I'd be back to spending all my time playing Warcraft and not getting any play. So, yeah, it's a blast. I'm actually working on a site redesign right now. I've been up all hours working on it.

D.J. says: (6:24:26 PM) Yeah. It's pretty slick. Will it debut for next month's issue?

Dustin says: (6:24:38 PM) Right now, it looks like it'll be rolled out for the March issue.

D.J. says: (6:25:10 PM) Okay. Something to look forward to. In addition to the footnote, you have quite the lovely baritone voice, don't you?

Dustin says: (6:26:20 PM) It gets the job done. I take it from that not-so-subtle segue that we're going to talk music now, right?

D.J. says: (6:26:46 PM) Maybe. Why not? What are you doing musically? You're no longer doing opera, are you?

(He's really sung opera professionally.)

Dustin says: (6:28:57 PM) You know, I'd never call myself an "opera singer". I've always used the phrase "a singer who's done some opera". I just used to do productions with the chorus because it was an absolute blast, but not to make my living. It's the folks who make careers of it that are "opera singers". If anything, I'd have to call myself a church musician, I suppose.

D.J. says: (6:29:33 PM) Bah! By that rationale, neither of us are writers. WATCH YOURSELF!!!

Dustin says: (6:29:49 PM) I just pretend to be a writer on my better days.

D.J. says: (6:29:52 PM) Nice. Right. So, how's the church music going? Any controversial stories? I kid,.. unless there are.

Dustin says: (6:31:37 PM) Well, I DO work for the Catholic Church, but I'm not privy to any scandal stuff. I just show up, put on a robe, and try to lead an assembly in song. Doesn't that sound lovely?

D.J. says: (6:31:52 PM) Indeed. Wear anything under the robe? For the ladies reading?

Dustin says: (6:32:14 PM) Oh, yes. I'm not in college choir anymore, after all.

D.J. says: (6:32:30 PM) Heh. I was just kidding.

Dustin says: (6:32:37 PM) I wasn't.

D.J. says: (6:32:41 PM) Whoa.

Dustin says: (6:32:41 PM) Ah.

D.J. says: (6:32:51 PM) I might have to rub one out after this interview. You read that right, bitch.

Dustin says: (6:34:41 PM) I'd say the weirdest thing about my life in the music world right now is that I've got that church gig-- which is an amazing job to have-- but it's only part-time. My day job is in rock 'n' roll, which is clear on the other end of the spectrum, really. I kind of live in this weird dual state, where I've got God in one ear, and Godsmack in the other.

D.J. says: (6:35:28 PM) You dork. That made me chuckle. So, yeah, you work for a concert promoter working with bands and shit, right? Tell the readers about that,.. if there's anything interesting to say.

Dustin says: (6:37:53 PM) Yeah. I've been with PromoWest Productions for awhile now. Sadly, I don't really deal with the bands-- that's the production manager's job. I'm the box office manager, so I'm dealing with your readers. The ones that come to shows, at least. But it's an amazing business to work in. I spent four years prior to this working in the arts-- for the opera, actually-- and now I'm into the promotions business, and it's a totally different animal.

D.J. says: (6:38:55 PM) Tell 'em about ping-pong with David Grohl!

(I'm now at Ashley Fontenot's site, sexynudegirls.net, while Dustin is replying! This is a wacky interviewing experience. I dig it. And I seem to have a thing for naked girls. What a pervert I am. Oh! He's back!)

Dustin says: (6:41:14 PM) Oh, yeah. The Dave Grohl story is my best one so far. Basically, I understand he usually tours with a ping-pong table on one of the trucks. So when the Foo Fighters came to town last May, I walk out of my office the afternoon of the show and these crew guys are setting up this table. So I start kind of thinking to myself, "No way am I cool enough for this to be happening to me." But a couple hours later, Dave was playing ping-pong just feet outside of my office. My co-worker Selena and I were taking turns running after the balls that flew out of play.

D.J. says: (6:44:07 PM) You were Dave Grohl's ball boy! You chased his balls.

(Sorry. Too easy and not very funny. Just like me.)

Dustin says: (6:44:32 PM) In a manner of speaking, yes. And that was WAY too predictable.

D.J. says: (6:45:03 PM) So, is Grohl clean? I mean, did he seem to have good personal hygiene? Because them rock stars,...

Dustin says: (6:46:41 PM) Seemed to be. I didn't really look him over that closely,.. but anyone at the concert that night will tell you he was making jokes about catching SARS from items people threw onto the stage. I think he's pretty clean.

D.J. says: (6:46:55 PM) Good to know. Okay, anything else you want people to know? About you? Or anything?

Dustin says: (6:47:45 PM) Uh. I promise to never write a novel. I don't have the attention span.

D.J. says: (6:47:57 PM) Thank God. Okay, real quick: Superman or Batman?

Dustin says: (6:48:18 PM) Wow. Loaded question.

D.J. says: (6:48:38 PM) Quickly!

Dustin says: (6:49:03 PM) Got to be Batman. Reason being, he's just a guy. Granted, he's got an unlimited supply of cash, but he's got no super powers to drawn on. And yet,.. Bats kicks ass.

D.J. says: (6:49:21 PM) LAME! PREDICTABLE!

Dustin says: (6:49:22 PM) And I'm now a raging dork for answering that.

D.J. says: (6:49:30 PM) At least you didn't ask it.

Dustin says: (6:49:39 PM) Thank you for bringing me down to your level.

D.J. says: (6:49:46 PM) Up! Up to my level! Up! Up! And away! Whatever.

Dustin says: (6:50:01 PM) Keep telling yourself that.

D.J. says: (6:50:22 PM) Feh. Okay. I have to ask one more question so I don't lose my Army of Wayne membership. Do dogs have lips?

Dustin says: (6:50:53 PM) Oh, right. Hmmm. I think dogs don't have fully-formed lips. They have these unevolved "proto-lips" that will become lips as we know them in a few millennia. Right now, they're basically just slobber-covered meat curtains.

D.J. says: (6:52:52 PM) "Slobber-Covered Meat Curtains" should be a band name! So, in the future, dogs will be able to whistle?

Dustin says: (6:53:40 PM) Not just whistle, but play brass instruments as well! The dog of the future will be able to replace French horn players, which will make the world a better place.

D.J. says: (6:53:50 PM) Hoorah! Thanks for your time!

Dustin says: (6:54:12 PM) Thank you for your interest. It was surreal, to say the least.

D.J. says: (6:54:16 PM) I love you. Bye.

Dustin says: (6:54:23 PM) Later.

THE FOLLOWING MORNING

Dustin says: (9:34:55 AM) Duder, that "naughty" pic on your propaganda page is great. It looks like you're shitting yourself!

D.J. says: (9:35:04 AM) Hah! Actually, that's my brother, Patrick.

Dustin says: (9:35:14 AM) Ah.

D.J. says: (9:35:16 AM) Hey, I'm making the changes to the interview. Anything else?

Dustin says: (9:35:31 AM) Do you really like that format?

D.J. says: (9:35:57 AM) You mean, keeping the IM time and stuff? I don't know. It makes it a little different.

Dustin says: (9:36:13 AM) It's not bad,.. it's just unusual.

D.J. says: (9:36:17 AM) I was going to see what the chickens said.

Dustin says: (9:36:19 AM) Yeah. Do that. I'm cool with it if they are; not that I'd normally have much say.

D.J. says: (9:36:38 AM) I also sent it to Night Watchman-- mainly about the format-- and I heard him laughing from his room. He really liked our witless banter.

Dustin says: (9:36:59 AM) Thank God. I think we're actually pretty boring.

D.J. says: (9:41:24 AM) It's a pretty quick read, though.

Dustin says: (9:41:31 AM) Yeah, it is. We are men of little substance.

D.J. says: (9:41:50 AM) Heh. Yeah.

Dustin says: (9:42:13 AM) Did you want to pad it? I mean, are you going to need to?

D.J. says: (9:42:21 AM) Dude! I'm going to add some of THIS to the end of the interview!

Dustin says: (9:42:37 AM) Ewww,...

D.J. says: (9:43:01 AM) Just a few lines. Like you asking me if I want to pad it. And that we're men of little substance. I dunno. If it doesn't work it'll be cut, so, no worries.

Dustin says: (9:43:17 AM) Oh, okay. I see how that works.

CHECK OUT THE FOOTNOTE HERE.


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