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Jouskas and Jackalopes

Updated: Jan 16, 2022

Our jouska started at The Brick Tavern in Roslyn, WA.

Mike and I were headed for the hiking trails but got “sidelined” with a beer pit stop. As we often do, we talk about stories that inspire us, trying to answer the illusive question of “What if….?” We wrote our first story line on a napkin. It was about people crossing paths in their life, the interconnection of our stories, and the lessons we learn from each other.

We toyed with the idea of writing and producing our own materials but Mike and I had no idea we would be forming a production company. But finally in 2016, we formed our company with the hopes to create a supportive environment and collaborate with others.

So, the name, Jouska Road. Yea that was a bit harder. We didn’t know what to name ourselves. It came down to assembling Scrabble letters using the letters from both of our names, really and voila!

Jouska (pronounced Jow-ska) is a word found in the ‘Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows’:

“a hypothetical conversation that you compulsively play out in your head—a crisp analysis, a cathartic dialogue, a devastating comeback.

Or from The Odyssey ( “The imaginary and often lively conversation that you carry out in your head between yourself and someone else.”

For us, road trips became our jouska – how we explored our own imaginations and creative possibilities.

Kira explores creativity through writing, directing, producing – basically anything logistical.

Mike explores through cooking, writing, observing.

But the jackalope?

Yea, Kira being raised in New Mexico was no stranger to the trickster character, the Jackalope, a mystical hybrid of a jackrabbit and antelope/deer. It’s an homage to the daydreaming backroads of NM and her renaissance creative father, Edward Sipler. Now, Ed was tinkerer who loved to sculpt, and was kind of a trickster himself. He crafted a “life-size” version of a jackalope for a family member, built its own crate to ship to Alaska and along the way, (meaning at the airport checking in his prize catch), he continued to perpetuate the legend of the jackalope, telling stories of how he caught the one in crate.

The jackalope seemed to be an ideal mascot of our blending of curiosity, creativity and the yearning to explore our individual paths. We were lucky to have the talented artist, Maëry Lanahan, visualize and create and multi-faceted, film collaborator, T.K. Johnson, animate our fun new muse.

We are excited to present our updated website and new logo! Check us out at and we hope you join us from time to time to see what storytelling ventures we create!

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