Rob Rasmussen – 311 Fan Spotlight – 2/23/15!


Hey hey my excitable, awesome peeps! Guess what? It’s CRUISE WEEK!! Happy cruising to all of the lucky ones attending (myself included)! Let’s kick this week of awesomeness off properly by introducing you to another amazing fan – Rob Rasmussen!

Funny start to the story – Rob was not instantly into 311 when he first heard them! The first song he heard was “Down” and it was fellow fan Zedanko Earthling who introduced him to the blue album. “When I first heard ‘Down’ I absolutely hated it. The story of why is too complicated to go into here, but it actually had nothing to do with the music. It’s funny how our past experiences can shape our future opinions of things.” Fast forward a year to when Rob heard the song “Paradise.”  “I had just lost my job, due to reasons that were completely my own fault, and I was throwing myself a pity party when I first heard the lyrics to Paradise: “Everything you do, it comes back to you, whatever it may be.” Until that point, I had been a huge metal-head, and never cared much about lyrics, as long as the music melted my face off. When I heard the deep and intense lyrics to this song though, I was immediately hooked, and my appreciation for lyrical content and 311 has done nothing but grow ever since.”

“A relative noob” is what Rob considers himself when it comes to seeing the band live. Although he’s been a fan since 95, he didn’t get to see his first show until 2009. While he doesn’t have an exact count, he believes he’s in double digits at this point. Favorite event so far? “311 Day 2014. Hands down. Seeing a group of Excitables completely fill and take over Bourbon Street was one of the most amazing experiences I’ve ever had. The pure, concentrated positivity of that event changed my life forever!”

The song “Paradise” obviously holds a special meaning to Rob, but the songs “Still Dreaming” and “Creature Feature” also have a special place in his heart. Rob considers himself a person who puts a high value on originality and individualism so it’s the opening verse of “Still Dreaming” that rings true in his ears: “No, I’ll not renounce my views, do what others do. I’d rather drink the hemlock than be like you, to my soul untrue.”  Rob hasn’t always been the positive vibe merchant that he is now and he knows that his darker side will always remain in him a little, which is why “Creature Feature” means so much to him. “I wanna do what’s right/Be kind to every single body/Open up to light/Just let it flow through my body/But sometimes I’m unsure.” Rob knows it’s hard to stay positive all of the time, but you have to fight for it.

Childhood was not the best time for Rob. He went through a lot of pain and sadness. The only blood family in his life is his brother (who he said is awesome), so his friends have really become his family, especially the new ones he’s made through the awesomeness of 311. He grew up on the west coast in various places and said he hasn’t stayed in one place for very long. “I kind of just go where the universe directs me.”  Rob currently works at a credit union to fund his “growing 311 habit.” He is also in his second year of college, pursuing a major in English and Psychology.

Rob’s real passion though is writing. “My epic novel is currently about 80% finished and I have many short stories already done, but I’m currently working on one based on the excitable crew called ‘The Knights of Unity.’ I’m always looking for input so if anyone wants to give me some feedback, send me a message!”

Positivity is what helps Rob shine in a crowd and he says he is always trying to find the proverbial silver lining in everything. “I try to learn from my struggles and challenges by seeing them as opportunities to grow as a person and evolve into a better human being.” When I asked about any guilty pleasures, he had a great response – “I don’t really do things that cause me guilt.”

Any kind of music that makes Rob feel something is what he loves, so his musical tastes range all over the map. Some artists that he enjoys are Metallica, Green Day, Stevie Wonder, Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, Ice Cube, Willie Nelson, Aerosmith, BB King, Nirvana, and Soundgarden – just to name a few! “The list literally could go on forever.”

While the musician list might go on forever, his message to the guys of 311 does not:

“Thank you so much for continuing to inspire me and improve the quality of my life!”

To all the people that make up the awesome sea of 311 fans:

“To my clique that’s more like a family, I look forward to meeting and bear-hugging as many of you as I possibly can. If you see me on the boat, at a show, or just walking down the street, come say hi and share some positive vibes with me! Until then, remember that we are all children of the same universe, so love and care for each other as you love and care for yourself!    Peace Love Unity Respect.”


Now you’ve all met Mr. Rob Rasmussen! If you meet him in person, give this awesome, positive guy a high five. Thank you for reading and thank you to Rob for sharing your tale!

If you are cruising, find Rob & I on the ship and say hi! Until next week…

“To all my friends, it’s not the end…the earth has not swallowed me yet!”

Much love – The Runt

Mr. Derek Hoover! 311 Fan Spotlight 2-16-15


Bienvenue my fellow 311 fans! As we inch closer to the next epic 311 event, take a moment to meet another awesome brodel. Here is the story of Derek Hoover!

His tale starts back when he was in the Navy. His friend Daniel Dussia was jamming the Grassroots album and the music caught his attention. “I started listening to him jam out and then the beats just hit me. I wanted to know more and listen to more.”

The thrill of seeing 311 live has caused Derek to lose count of exactly how many shows he’s been to, but he knows it’s well over 45 at this point. His first show was back in 1999 at the Boathouse in Norfolk, Virginia. His favorite show so far has been 311 Day 2004. “That was my first 311 Day and my wife Stephanie’s first ever 311 Day. The fans, the partying, the concert and reliving it all when I watch the DVD. It was an amazing time of my life.”

Derek is “42 years young” and grew up in Texas as an only child. He joined the Navy at the age of 20 and served a total of twelve years (six active and six reserves).  Attending two colleges (Virginia Tech and Tidewater Community), Derek earned his Associates Degree in computer graphic arts. He currently works for DMG Mori, a Japanese machining company, and has been there for four years.

Back in February 2013 Derek married his slinky Stephanie and they celebrated their wedding with a honeymoon on the third 311 cruise (the photo above was taken on that trip)!  They even danced their first dance as husband and wife to “My Heart Sings” and he said that song means the most to him now. He even had lyrics from it on his grooms cake. The couple has an 8 year old miniature poodle named Maui. Derek said of Maui, “Yes she has a mohawk and she’s my punk rock princess. All in all…life is beautiful!”

When not listening to 311, Derek’s eclectic musical taste and open-mindedness has him listening to a variety of other artists. Some of them include Beck, Incubus, STP, Full Service, Boards of Canada, Dirty Heads, Gwar, and Morbid Angel. “I run the full gambit when it comes to tunes. If it’s good, I listen to it.”

One of Derek’s dreams in life is to visit the Seven Wonders of the World with his beautiful wife by his side. As he worded it, he wants to “Visit” the entire world! Derek also loves to draw and do computer graphic artwork. “Just too bad my computer sucks lol.”  His guilty pleasure though is karaoke! “I’m a karaoke nut!” (Hopefully those of us attending cruise 4 can see some of this Derek!)

Derek would like to say a simple thank you to the band. “Thank you for changing my entire outlook on life and giving me an opportunity to pass positive vibes to all I come in contact with.”

His final words to all the awesome fans he shares his love for 311 with:

“I enjoy every moment being around my second family. I can not wait until I can sing, dance, and hug every excitable I know! 311×4.”


That’s Derek’s story my friends. I hope you all took pleasure in reading it and that it helped pass the time on this Monday! My gratitude to you all for reading every week. Keep on rockin’ and spreading that positivity!

Much love – The Runt

311 Fan Spotlight – Donald Dlugos – 2-9-15


Welcome again fellow 311 fans! Another Monday has arrived, and so has the new fan spotlight. Let’s meet Donald Dlugos!

Corona, California is the setting for Donald’s first exposure to 311. It was a small club show during the Grassroots tour. “The mix of rap and heavy guitars had me hooked.”

Since that small show Donald has attended a total of 72. The two most memorable to him are 311 Day 2012 and then a summer show he attended in Vegas. “I went with Scott Rome. He hooked it up heavy. Such a fun time.”

“Beyond the Grey Sky” is the song that means the most to Donald, although his favorite lyrics from a song are, “Don’t let me down.”  When he’s not listening to 311 though he can be found jamming the band Between the Buried and Me.

Southern California is where Donald grew up and he’s lived there most of his life, except for a few years when he lived in Vegas. He has a major love for all things Star Wars and says its what makes him stand out among his group of friends. He even collects Star Wars action figures.

Donald used to play in a band that toured all over the U.S. “I’m a great guitar player. Been playing forever.” He has been in a bunch of bands and now is teaching his children how to play. “The love for music is huge in my home.”

When I asked Donald what he would say to the band or a member if he could he replied saying he would, “Tell Pnut to make it more tech.”  It’s a little inside joke they have had going for a long time. “We follow each other on Twitter and he always answers me back or hits me up about random stuff now and then.”

Now to all the fans out there that share the love for 311 he would like to say:

“See you all in 2016! Take care of yourself and someone else.”


Now you’ve all been introduced to Mr. Donald Dlugos! Thanks for reading his story and for being the awesome people that you are! Keep on spreading the love and positivity. Until we meet again!

Much love – The Runt






BJ Amos – this weeks 311 fan spotlight!


We meet again lovely excitable friends! It’s time to meet yet another amazing member of the 311 fan community. Here’s the story of BJ Amos!

The Grassroots album was what introduced BJ to the wondrous sounds of 311. A friend that he worked with put the album on and he knew instantly that he liked it. “Just the vibe I got from that album, I knew I’d always be a fan.”  Since the introduction he’s seen 13 shows including Red Rocks, Pow Wow, and 311 Day 2014, which he says is his favorite so far. “Just because of all of the fans from all over the world whom I got to meet.”

“Light Years” is the song that has special meaning to him. “It reminds me that no matter how crazy shit gets it’ll be ok in the end.”  Some of his favorite lyrics though come from “Brodels” – “I can’t hear you, like having phone sex with a deaf girl.” He says it cracks him up every time!

BJ is originally from Athens, Georgia (and he included ‘Go Dawgs!’).  He also spent a year in Alabama, but for two years now has called South Jersey home (about 10 minutes from Philadelphia).  He said he’s pretty lucky and never really has to pay for a 311 ticket. Why you might be wondering? His birthday is usually right around when they play every summer so he manages to get them as a birthday gift! “Except for Pow Wow and 311 Day.  Those took some change saving haha.”

Love finds a way into many fans lives because of the 311 community, and it found it’s way to BJ! He married his slinky Melissa on 1/13 and they have a baby that is due on 3/11! How cool is that?

Some cool facts to know about BJ: He can pick up pretty much any instrument and figure out how to play it very quickly. He also has a thing where if he goes to a restaurant and they have some sort of food challenge, he just has to do it. Guilty pleasure? “Watching shitty horrible old school B rated horror movies like ‘Night of the Lepus,’ a movie about giant killer rabbits.”  Some other bands he’s into include Tech N9ne, Hospin, Upon a Burning Body, and Trivium. He also mentioned he’s got a soft spot for old school 50’s and 60’s doo wop.

If he ever meets 311 face to face, he’d simply like to say to them, “Just keep the mad notes coming homies!”

To each and every awesome member of this fandom of 311 he has this message:

“Stay positive and love your life, from chaos comes clarity. It doesn’t matter how down you get, no matter what life throws at you, there’s always a way up and over any problem you may encounter.”


Great final words BJ! Thank you all for taking the time to read his tale of his love for 311.  I love introducing you all to new people or having you read more about someone you’ve met!! Until we meet again, “Take on the love and the good karma!”

Much love! – The Runt