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Posted: July 01, 2009

Colorado Cool Stuff: DERAILED INK T-SHIRTS

T-shirt company offers humorous sports sayings

Eric Peterson

Last fall, Rob Bell and John McCaskill saw their careers get, well, derailed. They also saw it as a great opportunity to start a business. “We were both unemployed and wanted to do something different that was creative,” Bell says.


The resulting business, the aptly named DeRailed Ink, began with one humorous sports T-shirt—“What Would JC Do?”— with an artistic, fair-use image of a certain former Broncos quarterback. Bell and McCaskill got a permit and sold them in front of Mile High on game days. Next up was another Bronco design, “Eddie Royale with Cheese,” followed by “In Chauncey We Trust” and “Birdman” shirts bearing the respective images of Nuggets Chauncey Billups and Chris Andersen.

“Birdman” took off to the point where the Nuggets organization began marketing a similar shirt. Bell considers it a compliment. Now the focus is on the Rockies, with “The Toddfather” (Todd Helton) and “Tulo Jit 2 Quit” (Troy Tulowitzki) shirts. But what to do with those JC shirts now that JC is a Bear?  “The colors match up, so I’m going to find someone in Chicago to sell them there,” Bell says. $20 retail. Made by DeRailed Ink, Denver, Also available in front of Denver’s sports venues on game days.

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Denver-based writer Eric Peterson is the author of Frommer's Colorado, Frommer's Montana & Wyoming, Frommer's Yellowstone & Grand Teton National Parks and the Ramble series of guidebooks, featuring first-person travelogues covering everything from atomic landmarks in New Mexico to celebrity gone wrong in Hollywood. Peterson has also recently written about backpacking in Yosemite, cross-country skiing in Yellowstone and downhill skiing in Colorado for such publications as Denver's Westword and The New York Daily News. He can be reached at

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