Thursday, February 19, 2009

Endgame Reviews

There have been some great product reviews out there in cyberspace and I wanted to share a few with you guys. The two below are particulary cool because both are from non-chess related sites...

This first is a video review by Coty Gonzales. All this guy does is review t-shirts...he has seen a million of them...he eats t-shirts and craps cotton...let's see what he has to say about two of the Endgame shirts...

Glorious Nonsensities 2x06: Crazy Bananas, Endgame Clothing and Chess from Coty Gonzales on Vimeo.

In addition to the video, Coty interviewed me one-on-one for his "Indie Tee Spotlight"...this can be found here.

We were also mentioned on, who reviews "T-Shirts for a Geek Friendly Future." Here's what they had to say:

"Chess geeks have had it rough. When somebody would go and attempt to make some game inspired gear it usually turned out on the french-horn-in band side of extracurricular lame. Not John. John started his shop, EndGame Clothing with a mission: create chess inspired shirts that would be equally at home raiding the frat house as they would be castling. That’s quite an accomplishment."

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Back From the Tourney

What did you learn this weekend? Well, I learned that there are certain people that don't like Endgame t-shirts. As I sat at my vendor table, at the U.S. Amateur Team West tournament, I was treated to several looks of contempt as people passed by. One man even said that one of my shirts was in "poor taste." Really? Dude, have you looked in the mirror in the past 10 years? That tie is in poor taste.

But for every person that didn't like my shirts, there were 2 that loved them. This was great and I want to thank everyone who came by to say, "hi." In particular, there were a group of guys from Cal State Northridge who where totally stoked to see my shirts and I even met 2 people who follow this blog!

This was my first attempt to promote Endgame in the offline world. I took a few pictures of my vendor table posted them in the draft for this blog entry, but after seeing them, I took down the pictures...they look too boring. I can now see that my set-up really failed to capture the majesty that is Endgame Clothing. I'm not going to let that happen again...I have some great ideas for next time.

By the way, the shirt that was in "poor taste" was my second best seller.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Photo Shoot

Last night we had a photo shoot for Endgame Clothing. The photographer and model were awesome! I can't wait to see the pics...check back soon!

Sunday, February 8, 2009

U.S. Amateur Team West Tournament

Endgame Clothing is taking its game on the street!

I will be peddlin' my wares and pimpin' my shirts at the 24th annual U.S. Amateur Team West tournament on Saturday, February 14th. The tournament will be held at the Warner Center Marriott in Woodland Hills, CA. Be sure to come by and say, "Hi!"

More info about the tournament can be found here.

Worst Job in the World

A friend of mine decided to ditch work a few weeks back and bought a lottery ticket. Bam!! The guy wins $20,000 on a scratcher.

So he goes to the dreary government building to claim his winning. Sitting behind the counter is the most miserable person in the world.

Here is a little bit of my friend's conversation with this person...

My Friend: When does the confetti fall from the ceiling?

Lottery Employee: What confetti, sir?

My Friend: There should be confetti that falls from the ceiling when a big winner like me comes around. Come on, where is it?

Lottery Employee: (No answer. Just a dead blank stare. She cuts my friend a check who then studies the check very closely for a full minute.)

My Friend: Oh, this can't be right.

Lottery Employee: What do you mean?

My Friend: This check is too small.

Lottery Employee: No, sir, it is for $20,000...exactly the amount you won.

My Friend: No, I mean, the check is too small. Where is the big check, the huge one that I have to carry with two hands?

Lottery Employee: What?

My Friend: You know, that 4 foot long one.

Lottery Employee: That is only for ceremonies.

My Friend: Is there a suggestion box around here? I think you guys should make some changes...

I was cracking up when my friend told me this story, but can you image how soul crushing it must be to sit behind a counter all day and just hand out lottery winning?

So what does this have to do with chess? Well...nothing, really.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Current Chess Scene - part one

One of my biggest gripes about the chess scene today is that there is no adult chess experience. I'm not talking about some obscure European chess porn (but if you have some, feel free to email ;-)), but I am talking about being able to enjoy and discuss chess in an adult context.

In organized chess today, the scholastic programs make up the majority of the members of the United States Chess Federation. And on one level, that is a great thing; the Federation needs every member it can get. But as a result, the Federation has created an environment that is wwaaayyyy too kid friendly. We are so busy kissing their prepubescent asses and trying to keep their parents happy that we end up trying to please everyone from ages 5 to 95. This is an impossible task!

So what we all get is a big serving of bland, boring, uninteresting dullness. Is it any wonder why so many people drop out of the chess scene after a few years? Unless you have completely dedicated your life to the game, are an 8 year old, or the overprotective parent of an 8 year old, I just don't many things that hold the attention of the casual player. The casual player needs to be given some other type of social reward or fulfillment.

Now don't get me wrong...I like kids, I have kids and I even used to be a kid. And I believe that if kids are around, then everyone has a personal responsibility to set the best example possible. But sometimes I also like to curse and get pissed that I hung a piece for the thousandth fucking time!

I am here to say that this squeaky clean one-image-fits-all is wrong! I am here to say that is one of the MAJOR reasons that chess in America is in such a sorry state!

And this is one of the reasons I started Endgame Clothing...that's right, dear reader, to save chess!!!

End Part One