Letters to Holly

Monday, March 13

Cells

Friday was the nine-month anniversary of the legal wedding, and we had dinner out at Jason’s, the restaurant that catered the formal wedding. It both does and doesn’t feel like nine months. A lot has obviously happened since then: We’ve moved into the house and settled into it; she’s started two semesters of teaching and coached a volleyball team; I’ve produced a comic story, three magazines, and five newsletters; and we’ve had another round of holidays. We haven’t had anything like what I’d call a real argument, just geysers of stress here and there.

Your Sister has also started working on the yard as the warmer weather lures out outdoors. She’s pruned quite a bit to give me more space to mow, killing my excuse to let some patches grow wild. We’ve talked some about the rows of plants in the front yard and the garden. We might build a new compost box.

She received surveys from both the Republican Senate Committee and the Democratic Congressional Committee. She anwered the Dems' survey, and I took the GOP one. The GOP survey stated that it wouldn't be tabulated unless you paid an $11 "donation." This strikes me as designed to received feedback from those who are either wealthy enough to spend $11 or loyal enough to want to. Doesn't this skew the survey toward those with more money? We didn't send it in.

On Saturday, I hit the gym while Your Sister worked the Altar Guild to prep the church for the Sunday services. We had our usual Saturday lunch out, this time at Ceilito Lindo, where you heard the mariachi band. Then we did the unthinkable, the most horrid of all deeds, we bought cell phones. We checked out the local Verizon store but weren’t encouraged by the look of it. It’ll do fine as a part and accessories store though, and indeed we went back to buy a car charger. No, we instead, drove back to Best Buy and followed up on the previous look-see. This time, they had the styles we wanted in stock and we signed all the paperwork and bought nifty little clip-pouches, and left the store armed with our new cellosity. That night, after sitting by the firepit and having a beer, we delved into the working and options of the phones for about two hours. And went to mind with our minds reeling. The ringtones are despicable, but we enjoy using nicknames for the voice-activated dialers. The cell phone puts me at ease with my commute and now I won’t be reliant on passersby if I need to call in a phone accident. Also I can stick by the car and talk to AAA or the insurance company. Because the phone has a clock, I don’t need to buy the watch I was contemplating.

Sunday had a slow start as Your Sister was enrapt with watching “Mad About You” and then napping. I worked on the below sketch and used the Feast Day to get in some PlayStation wrestling. I don’t find the absence of gaming and ice cream annoying at all. I’ve managed to weather Lent pretty well by staying busy with Things That Need Doing.

One of those is delving into “Harry Potter.” I’ve only gotten as far as the Sorting Hat chapter, but I’m enjoying the book and going through it quickly. I can’t ell if the book is this well-written, or I’m reliving the enjoyment o the movie adaptation. The movie, from what I can remember, follows the book almost word for word so far. I can easily see myself reading the whole series. I don’t know if I would have enjoyed this if I read it when I was younger. I didn’t have much interest in magic stories back then. The highlight of the weekend was seeing Your Sister laugh at a stand-up comic, a rarity that rivals Halley’s Comet. But what made it even better is that she laughed at Eddie Izzard, one of the best funny guys around. BBC America showed his “Dress To Kill” concert last night.

Sketch Day
DC Comics has reworked Catwoman a lot, trying desperately to find another heroine who isn’t a simple spin-off of an established character. Wonder Woman sprang from no previous hero, but Batgirl and Supergirl are, essentially, sidekicks. As has virtually every other female hero DC has managed to sell successfully. Catwoman is also that most beloved of comic clichés: the redeemed villain. Comic writers love to make bad guys turn good or at least become a sympathetic antihero. Catwoman is that now. She fights crime but also steals when the mood strikes, like an itch that escapes scratching.

In the news
Scientific American provides 15 answers to pro-creationist attacks on evolution theory.

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March Madness begins with the list of the 64 teams making the tournament. The ACC Championship game between Duke and Boston College was tight. BC had a few chances to put away Duke but couldn’t make the shots.

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V For Vendetta opens this week as the first big film of 2006. It was to be released last November but the London bombings and tight editing schedules forced the move to spring. It’s getting a big profile for its subject matter – revolution against fascism – as well as its pedigree. Genius comic writer Alan Moore crafted this with artists David Lloyd back in the mid-‘80s of Thatcher and Reagan social policies, and the film is the first by the team behind The Matrix since that trilogy’s end. While I treasure Moore’s writing, “Vendetta” is not a great comic. It’s bogged by multiple subplots and character arcs. The hook is the progression of V and Ivey, the two leads. One segment of “Vendetta” is the biography of a government prisoner long since dead, and it’s possibly the best written chapter Moore’s written, which is saying a lot. There will be a lot of babble from the pundits about what this film says about Homeland Security and the war on terrorism, but it’s no different from the previous centuries of rascal heroes fighting corruption in authority. Give this guy a car, and he’d be that much closer to the Dukes of Hazzard. Give him a horse, and he’s Robin Hood. Your Sister has read the book, and we both geeked out for Matrix so we’ll be seeing this movie when it opens. We root for the success of the film mainly because we want a studio to give a big director a pile of money to make the long-attempted adaptation of Moore’s masterpiece, “Watchmen.” After the mixed results of adapting “League of Extraordinary Gentlemen” and “From Hell,” we hope the Vendetta film will convince people that the stories work as Moore designed them and don’t require updating.

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