When you’re miserable, you need to make someone even more miserable than yourself.

-Lucy “Elfen Lied”

  • Kind of want to watch Elfen Lied again.  I should see if that’s on Netflix.  That quote stuck out to me for a few reasons.  That seems like a mindset a lot of people like.  Misery likes company.  Too many people get caught up in their misery and struggle to see the real solutions looking them right in the face.  When it comes to loved ones, it was never because of what they were/are.  I always loved them for what they could be.  Their potential.  I will always believe in potential.  Dragging everyone into your misery is just wasting that potential.
  • Chugging along on a variety of projects during my vacation.  It amazes me how it feels like I’m accomplishing so much more when I’m not spending 80% of my time sleepwalking through everything.  Order of the Dragon #1 is right on track.  Hoping to have the inking done by the time I go back to work and be at least started on lettering at that point.  From there, maybe getting some feedback and going towards getting something printed in book form.  Also getting the sketch cards rolling.
  • Working on a page in Order of the Dragon #2 the other day, one featuring one of the primary protagonists, Liana–there will be three by the end of the issue, Liana, Nosferatu and Jimmy.  One concern I had was introducing too much in the course of one issue, but it makes more sense when I factored in that this issue dealt primarily with the fallout of the first issue.  But anyway, I ended up drawing Liana a certain way.  Less of the usual female, hour-glass you see in comics.  Nosferatu totally gets that and I will admit to some gratuitous ass shots.  Liana got drawn with more of a full figure.  While some in story stuff might lead to some alterations, I like that look to start.  Just thinking about how female characters get depicted.
  • Also starting to work on a bit of “soundtrack” to Order of the Dragon.  Just random songs I listen to when I work on it.  I’ll post the current list at the bottom of the page.  It will probably be an expanding thing.
  • My cat got sprayed by a Skunk.  Again.  At least it’s been three or four years since the last time.  Less than amused with the little guy.  Well, I say little but he was 18.3 pounds when I brought him to the vet last week.  Either way, he’s a bit ripe right now.  Got to mix up the baking soda and peroxide stuff.  Now just letting him air out.  Alternating between calling him “Stinky” and “Pepe LePew”.

 

Order of the Dragon Soundtrack:

“Alone Together” by Fall Out Boy

“Centuries” by Fall Out Boy

“Immortals” by Fall Out Boy

“Your Spirit’s Alive” by Dropkick Murphys

“Nosferatu” by Blue Oyster Cult

“Is She With You? (Wonder Woman Theme)” by Hans Zimmer and Junkie XL (BvS soundtrack)

“Wonder Woman’s Wrath” by Rupert Gregson-Williams (Wonder Woman soundtrack)

“Love is Pain” by Joan Jett and the Blackhearts

“Sad Eyed Lady of the Lowlife” by A3

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It’s about what you believe. And I believe in love. Only love will truly save the world.

-Wonder Woman

  • I might plan on seeing Wonder Woman at least one more time.  Definitely worth more viewing.  Have a vacation next week, so that will probably happen then.
  • I am right on track with where I was hoping to be as far as comics are concerned.  Inking is moving right along and I’ve got a good number of sketch cards/tiles drawn up.  Thinking about giving away a bunch of the tiles I did for practice.  Characters like Batman, Superman, Doctor Strange, Chandra from MTG, etc.  Noticed my Instagram has shifted pretty heavily to artwork–mostly my original projects too–and I’m pretty pleased with that.  Not that I’m not going to post the occasional Flex Friday selfie or cat pic, but I’m pleased to be using it mostly for art.
  • Funny story.  Last Friday I was getting Jeep worked on and I was walking down the street.  I come to an intersection and this car is coming across in front of me as I approach.  Somebody in the car shouts something, couldn’t quite make it out.  I look up and it looks like a group of young women in the car and as it goes by, the girl in the front passenger seat sticks her head out and makes a gesture for oral sex at me.  I just kind of stood there stupidly thinking, “Wait… What… Come back!  I want a BJ!”  Kind of silly, douchy response, but it was a bit of a silly situation.
  • A friend of mine was suggesting I look at jobs in Wisconsin.  I’m just generally like, “Wisconsin?  Seriously?”  I heard it’s a lot like Vermont, but you know what’s a lot like Vermont?  Vermont.  I like Vermont.  I like New England.  I’m not convinced I don’t have opportunities here.  And beyond farming itself–if only because it might have more of the diversity I am looking for–I’m not really that interested in Dairy Processing.  I’d like to learn something new.  Maybe there’s an observation about LMCBW’s sister and their dynamic on a level as well.  One of the things about that I think people ignored in that was the unsustainable nature of their move to Nevada and I saw a questionable pattern forming.  Her parents visit one week, a cousin the next.  Another cousin a few weeks later,  LMCBW a week or two later.  Aunts and uncles after that.  The sister comes back to VT for a few weeks in August and around Christmas.  That was kind of the reason I never expressed a strong desire to visit them at the time.  While I acknowledge my family operates differently, I would have little interest in starting a regular criss-crossing of the country.  It would get exhausting and does little good for anyone involved.  Plus, I’m in the middle of getting off my ass about making comics.  Moving across the country would just be one more distraction.
  • I talked about human sexuality the other day, and I’ve been thinking on that some more.  Probably because it is Pride Month.  Like most of the structures of our lives, we’re conditioned into thinking a certain way about things.  Sexual Orientation is no different.  If our tastes and preferences in what we look for in relationships can shift, if we can fall in and out of love like we do, it only makes sense that orientation and our views on it has the potential to shift as well.  We’re conditioned by centuries of ideology to believe that monogamous heterosexual relationships are the ideal.  Which makes it harder to question the truth of that.  I am straight, but I admit that isn’t nearly as simple of a statement as it seems.  I think the important thing to remember is that love and life are change.  Love people for what they could be as much as what they are.

Those cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.

-George Santayana

  • Plugging away with the comics.  I feel I’ve made a lot of progress and I can really do some stuff with it now.  Looking into some Print on Demand/Self-publishing options for when I’ve gotten to that point.  Doing a lot of sketch cards and tiles for later use.
  • Hear very good things about the Wonder Woman movie.  Planning to go see it on Thursday or Friday.  If I really cared much for the DC vs. Marvel debate, I would say that DC has taken a bit of a lead if only because I feel they’ve done more with their female characters over four movies than Marvel has over twelve.
  • So I never really thought Kathy Griffin was all that funny or relevant to much of anything.  The picture of her the other day with the bloody Trump head was kind of weird.  I mean, I get that it bothered Barron Trump to see that type of thing.  However, did anyone think about Obama’s two daughters the myriad of times that he was lynched in effigy?  It was kind of glorified by various individuals and dismissed.  Now that its Trump, we’re supposed to be outraged?  No.  If Griffin is going to go through all this, drag Ted Nugent and all those tea party jackasses into it too.  They got a free pass and Trump signed up for this.
  • Shockingly enough, Bill Maher said something outrageous.  That’s never happened before.  Although this time he did go to an extreme with the “N” word.  A lot of people calling for HBO to fire him.  I’ve liked his show and thought he made a variety of good points.  The thing is, I feel that a lot of what he does is done by the Daily Show and the various off-shoots of that.  And they tend to do it better if only because they keep their egos more under control.
  • So apparently Jeff Sessions has offered to resign recently.  Or at least that’s what an article I saw indicated.  I don’t know how true that is.  It does raise I have pondered lately.  How stable are Trump’s appointees?  Especially if he continues to display his lack of stability?  People are all worried about Mike Pence becoming President, but we won’t know how many dominos will fall until the first one does or how many will.
  • It is important to remember that experiences can still teach long after they have occurred.  I feel I can say with certainty I won’t fuck up the same way twice.  The next job, the next relationship, the adventure… will all be better than ever.

There are two types of beings in the universe: those who dance, and those who do not.

-Drax Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2

  • Been keeping up with the pencilling a page a day approach to drawing out comics.  Working more with a hybrid workflow on my comics now.  Draw it out in pencil, then go to the computer for finished art/lettering.  Works well for time management.  I’m liking that approach right now.
  • Saw Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2.  Liked it well enough.  Do think they got a bit overboard with the during/after credit stuff.  Just my opinion.  I just feel like the Marvel movies are losing the magic they once had.  Like they’ve been a lot more hit or miss in quality lately.  Might just be me though.
  • I’ve seen this quote Chris Pratt made about working out.  When he got the part of Peter Quill, he actually put himself through a fairly intense program to get into the shape he was for these movies.  It goes, “Six months seems like a long time unless you’re looking backwards… all you have to do is just a few things everyday and remain consistent, and time will fly just as fast as it flies if you’re working hard or not. If you just cut the crap out of your diet, and if you spend an hour a day doing something physical that will make you sweat, six months will pass by, you will feel better mentally, physically, spiritually — it all is tied together.”  Very true.  In the time since I became single I really ramped up my routines at the gym and straightened out a few things diet wise and it has made a huge difference.
  • Random question that occurred to me:  Why do we glorify breasts and butts?  I mean, functionally speaking I understand.  Ideal traits for reproduction.  The breasts are essentially fat and if they are small they get bigger when they are fulfilling their purpose.  But in general, is there really a serious benefit to bigger breasts?  As as for butts… admitted a well formed and solid backside is a sign of good physical conditioning.  I like looking at a squat booty as much as anybody.  I really do, but why is it that we focus on that?  We have to find the best attributes, but shouldn’t we appreciate the whole?
  • Finishing up my review for work.  I handed it in, but my supervisor wanted me to revise, go into more detail about a few things.  I’m almost tempted to post it online for public consumption.  Doesn’t really matter they won’t take it seriously anyway.

The game is afoot.

  • I collect Magic Cards, but I haven’t really played since college.  Mostly I just put decks together.  I’ll buy a booster pack or holiday box or whatever and start seeing what cards go together.  I’m not even really up to speed on a lot of the new abilities–energy counters, etc.–that have been added in recent years.  I might try to sell a few decks at some point.  I really don’t need the two dozen or so decks I’m working on.  I mean, I might like to play a few of them (the Chandra one, the Elf Deck, the Vampire Deck, Red/White Angel Deck) but most of them are ones I don’t really need.
  • Going to start working on a series of Magic the Gathering drawings soon.  Already did a Chandra sketch card, planning to do some some of those.  Maybe something more complex.  Going to try to get back to page work in the near future.  Problem is I always want to do ten pages when I should do one.  And burn myself out.  I have no pacing whatsoever.  Working on that.
  • Officially done bulking.  Got up to 180 pounds.  Pretty pleased about that, although I did briefly hope to get up to 200 pounds.  Combination of factors got in the way, but 180 was the goal along.  My general plan is to cut down to 170 or so.  The biggest thing has just been trying to learn to work with my body, not against it.  The big issue is still sleep, but not much to be done about that for now.  Kind of a body and mind thing.
  • Tried a new pre-workout that somebody gave me a sample of.  Stuff called 5150.  I think I read that it has 8 different types of caffeine.  Very powerful stuff.  If anybody wants to try it, be warned: it is very intense.
  • Thinking about trying to make Meatballs or something different than I’ve been making.
  • I wrote the other day about my experiences growing up on the family farm and been pondering that a bit more.  Basically I’ve gained more insight into a lot of what unfolded regarded my family’s history in farming and it has given me some new avenues of thought.  I don’t deny those experiences did give me a more pessimistic view of farming–and also of opportunities I was presented with, but that’s a story for another year.  Trying not to get into what ifs, but I do believe there were opportunities I could have done a lot with.  And maybe new options will present themselves.  I’m always keeping an eye open.
  • I find myself pondering options and opportunities.  The average person will change careers seven times.  I have to wonder if in trying to create a stable workplace, do employers limit the ability of workers to find better options and opportunities.  I get paid $22 and some change an hour with good benefits where I work, but does that pay rate keep me from seriously considering a job where I might be happier?  Where I might have better opportunities for advancement and more flexibility to pursue other endeavors?  And does the effort to maintain a stable workplace keep employers from finding people who are potentially better fits?  Stability and comfort can be as much a hindrance as a help.

Resolution Post?

December 31, 2016

I suppose this could the “New Year, New Me” post, if the meteor doesn’t wipe us all out before midnight tonight–this year has really softened us up for it, so I wouldn’t be surprised.  So yeah, I really question the validity of a post detailing any real resolution for the coming 2017.  I mean it really shouldn’t take the arbitrary determination of the passage of a rotation around the sun to get your shit together.

I do have some ongoing goals for the coming year.  Some of which are more realistic than others.

  • Get to more family gatherings.  Strangely enough, I miss going to family gatherings on a regular basis.  Working nights disrupts most human interactions on a variety of levels and I’m feeling like that’s been one of my biggest issues is the lack of person to person connection.  Family gatherings in specific, I’ve come to like those more than I used to.  I would like to make sure I get to more of them in the future.
  • Somewhat related, try a new vocation.  While I am ramping up the job hunt in recent weeks, I’m also tempted to… inquire about some part time opportunities.  Farming is one that sticks out to me.  One of the bigger eye rolls I had about my ex and the farm was that she never took the hint that if her parents had made a real offer on a job with the farm, I would have taken it.  Kind of a ridiculous thing, but I took that whole dynamic seriously and did not feel right initiating that process.  So I’ll see if there’s potential for some kind of part time gig.
  • Continue to get into better shape.  I’ve accomplished a lot of goals in the last few months, but I’ve no intention of stopping.  Kayak more too.  I still have an interest in archery that I would like to explore a bit more.  I have a coworker who keeps trying to talk me into shooting guns, but firearms don’t really hold that much interest to me.  I acknowledge my politics might influence that, but I honestly think guns are overrated.  If I’m messing around with weaponry, I’d rather it was something I was putting more effort into than a flick of a finger.
  • Do more art.  I’ve made a lot progress and I’d like to continue with that.  On me to keep that going in the right direction though.

So, it has been a bit of a down year all around.  I was going to wait until after Christmas to reflect on the year as a whole, but I get the feeling December is just going to be going through the motions and mailing it in.  The United States and Britain seem destined to complete their self-destruction as the icons we grew up with continue to pass away.  So 2016 really has become the year where we lost ourselves.

Bowie, Rickman, Prince, Castro, Cohen, Glass, Henderson…  We have lost a lot of people who defined who we were and how we feel about ourselves.  People get annoyed when people get upset over celebrities dying, but it is important to remember that these people form a part of our culture and how we regard ourselves.  After a bad at work I’ve been know to put on Bowie’s Hunky Dory and listen to “Kooks” and that usually makes me feel better.  Or unwind to an episode of Serenity.  Or quote any number of Rickman’s memorable lines.  And so on.  Even Fidel Castro, in his own way, had his role in the formation of our culture.  So it is reasonable to feel something significant when people of their presence in our lives pass away.

2016 was really a wash year.  We were so self-destructive this year.  Even in my personal attempts to turn the anger and angst into something productive were heavily caught up in the waves of… whatever.  For lack of a better way to put it, we drowned ourselves in our own bullshit this year.  This whole year was about self-destruction.

Some predictions:

  • I think that on a global and national scale, we are poised to see a lot more instability.  I just look at the players involved and some what’s unfolding and those do not bode well in my mind.
  • I think I will be in some kind of relationship in 2017.  How serious of one, I don’t know.  I’ve gone on a date or two, but things have been a bit too hectic to really get a read on anything.  Who knows?  Somebody was telling me that it sometimes takes a up to a year and a half to get over a break-up, depending on how long and serious the relationship.  Part of the reason I’m glad I haven’t gotten into a relationship yet.  I think I did need the time to figure out how responsible I was for the state of things there and I do feel I’ve reached a point where I’ve shouldered my share.  I’ve taken responsibility for my mistakes and learned from them.
  • Probably will be getting a new job next year.  I’ve been ready to move on for a long time and I’m feeling more and more like it has been dragged out longer than it should.  I’m not foolish enough to state a time table without a plan in place, but I’m thinking it will happen.
  • I will be doing something more productive with artwork.  We will see.
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