March 8th, 2009


Why Am I Up?

My schedule's off again, owing to the TCM. com Underground gig. I'm getting too old for a long shift like yesterday's, instead of bouncing back today, I just sort of crashed and burned after an afternoon of lettering and inking. Got bored with the lettering (as is often the case) and started inking a few things here and there. Passed out at a normal bedtime and woke up around 1:30 am. Im in that weird stasis field you enter when you're not sure if you'll fall back asleep or drift around the house like a phantom or plop down at the board and work until 6 a.m. I think I'll try to get back to bed and wake up early and get a long day in again tomorrow. 

I haven't done any kind of strip in a while, sad to say, so in some ways it's nice to be working on a few pages. Making things happen, giving characters lines, attempting to wring out some jokes. I just wish the job didn't fall when it did, because I'm behind on Beasts of Burden #3 and I'm stressing over that. I agreed to do the strip months ago and then the deadline was changed a bit and things didn't fall in the way I'd expected. Then again, when do they ever? Right. Never. For most everyone. I envy folks who have organized, living brains.

I'm wishing I had more time as of late as whenever I hit a patch of days where I'm unable to spend decent time with Emily I get antsy and feel guilty. It's less worrisome than usual, because he's been really occupied as of late, between Sarah (of course), and activities around the house (planting seed trays for the garden, and yesterday spent hours in the backyard/garden), Animal Crossing and Pokemon Snap sessions, and her reading, which she's super passionate about. Which murders me. It makes me so happy to see her sitting on the couch or in her book nook poring over her library, her magazines and comics. She's definitely into comics, which murders me for various obvious reasons. Currently she's been reading and re-reading Johnny Boo book two by James Kochalka and a cheap old Whitman hardback digest of Mr Jinks and Pixie and Dixie comics, after a long Magic Trixie engagement. (spell?). And at  nights Sarah's been reading her Raggedy Ann and Andy. Which are...nuts. We have to go through them (well, Sarah has) for some obvious and some not-so-obvious reasons (the usual: racial stereotypes we're not ready to explain to a four-year old, the unusual -- in the Fat Policeman entry, several characters get turned into pigs, and this mortified Em, and the book was banished back to the shelf).  But she's really enjoying her story-time books at night, and we expect to work out way into the Oz series before too long once we think she's ready for an extended story. Which might be now, to be honest. So many books, so little time...

Especially right now, because I'm dying to just crack something open and sit with it for a while. I've got a small pile by the bet, some reference books for the Beasts series, some just plain old books for enjoyment and whatnot. Finished up a book on Sarah and Gerald Murphy and their circle of friends and cohorts from the 20's and on, which was really good, if sad. Boy, that F.Scott Fitzgerald, I really enjoy his writing, but every time I read about him I want to punch him in the face. And put a straitjacket on his batshit wife. And a muzzle. And I still can't stomach Hemingway, I guess. He's fascinating, but what a fucking blowhard/dick. I can separate the person from the work pretty well (fuck you, Picasso, you genius asshole you), but I've never been too crazy about his work, so it doesn't matter. Anyway, I'm too tired to look stuff up and link to it, but Gerald Murphy's art is really fascinating/attractive to me, and perhaps to you, or perhaps might be to you. Give it a ding on the world-wild-interweb.

I also need to post about the WFMU marathon, but I'm too scattered to do it properly.

But regarding the reading, yeah, I haven't been able to do any real reading other than a bathroom flip through the latest issue of Roctober (which is swell as always, and one of the last great zines left, I guess). I've got books on the runway, and comics on the runway, and no time right now. The other day I was able to wrest some awesome stuff outta the comic shop, via credit gained from traded-in comps and old comics and books. I took home the third Tezuka Blackjack hardcover, the sixth (and final) IDW Terry and the Pirates collection, and the Humbug boxed set from FBI. Oh, yeah, baby. Now I just have to find the time to devour all that swellness. And the Orphan Annie books I haven't jumped into yet. Oh, hey, in an editorial intro to the Terry collection Dean Mullaney drops the little bombshell that he and IDW are going to be embarking on a King Aroo reprint project. Hot pickled damn, says I, being a fan of Jack Kent's sweet and marvy little humor strip. Hope the economy allows that one to squeak through, not sure how great the general audience is for that. I know some cartoonists/industry types who will hug that book, myself included. IDW's doing some terrific reprint stuff, I dunno if I'll glom onto Rip Kirby (I'll try anything, but there's so many reprint projects to follow, and my credit is limited, and my comic book budget has been slashed in recent spending cuts), and I'll be skipping Bloom County (never liked it, but that's a great fish they landed, obviously) and I'm unsure if I'll give The Family Circus a shot. The early strips might have something going on in them, for all I know. You never know. But with Popeye, Prince Valiant, Annie, Wash Tubbs/Capt Easy, Dick Tracy, Bringing Up Father, King Aroo et al, still chugging along or forthcoming, and who knows what else is in the pipeleie, I can't see it. I'll flip through it, but I doubt I'll be taking a copy home. With all this stuff coming out I'm barely ever looking at anything being done by contemporary cartoonists. I'm looking forward to David Mazzucchelli's book, but otherwise...I'm two volumes behind on Acme...and I can't think of anything else I'm following closely. Still haven't picked up the new format Love and Rockets fer chrissakes --! (although I did get the complete run of the latest paperback collections to replace all our old L&R books, save for the Locas and Palomar monster hardcovers, which you can try to pry from my cold, clammy hands when I'm up an' daid). I'm starting to use the library more and more for comics (as well as books for us, and kid's books for Em) manga especially, and recently Bottomless Belly Button (didn't knock me out, and I wanted it to, and I liked parts and aspects of it, and didn't hate it, but overall, no dice, just didn't see the reason for the superlatives. I must just be a negative creep, I guess, or a dumb philistine). There's just so much shelf space and money, and some things I used to pick up on a whim I now plan on borrowing from the library instead. If they get it, of course. That's how I read Death Note, I just wish they had more manga I was looking for.  Still, it's been fun finding stuff there. But like I said, just wish I had more time to read. And more shelves.

Shit. I could have been reading instead of writing this twaddley crap. And now goddamned daylight savings has kicked in and further fucked up my schedule. Crap! It's almost 3:30. Oh, hell on that. I should've read some Blackjack. Blah.

Oh, well. I think I'm going to try to get back to bed. Or I'll go bother the cats. Or eat something, which I shouldn't, because I'm in lousy shape and haven't been to the gym in ages. Once again. 

Thanks for letting me ramble. Later.