Letters to Holly

Friday, May 14

Top 50 Hip Hop Samples

This is too awesome to wait for Monday: It's the top 50 hip-hop samples and the source songs. You want a study break? This is it. This is a party link.

Different Types of Offspring

I made the paper:
“For a first-year effort, this is a big show, and that befits Asheville,” said Gregory Dickens, a comic book artist from Brevard who is one of the more than 60 artists and vendors slated to participate. His titles include “Focus,” “We're Having a Monster” and “The Sleep Book.”

“If you're going to do it, it needs to be big. Brash, even. This is an unabashed celebration of pop culture and comics, and the distinction between those is rapidly vanishing.”

They ran the name of my comics. That's free advertising! I'm gonna make it rain in the comic shop! The paper's website ran my photo in the creator section but didn't ID me or run my interview there. Weird.

Your Sister made a drawing of her We're Having A Monster baby with a name we considered for our pagan goth child.

This week's Roo appointment was quick. Your Sister is at 33 inches and 173 pounds. She's put on 20 since we learned we were preggo, and that's right within the range we want to be. We go back in two weeks for fluid tests and to check Roo's position. Mom is going to order the crib equipment, and I'll pick it up next week.

Tonight, I pick up hand sanitizer and snacks and get to bed early.

This is what my con gear looks like as of last night. There's not much. I practiced my Iron Man sketches while getting my car inspected. I learned downtown Buncombe County has free wifi. I wonder if I can stream a webcam link from the convention.

I'm eager. I'm excited. I hope to hobnob with other comic folks at the bar afterward.

Thursday, May 13

Is This Thing On?

The hiatus is work related. I just got major product off my shoulders. Also, we're pretty boring old people except for our (re)production.

We learned yesterday that the state DMV will not renew our vehicle registrations until it has proof the inspections were done. For my car, Brady the Matrix, I discovered the dealership did not inspect my car despite charging me for it. The serviceman found out where the error occurred and promised my car would move to the head of the line when I bring it by, and they'll make me street legal tout de suite. That won't be until next week, I suppose.

For her motorcycle, the inspection will wait until she's back in shape to ride it again. She suggested taking it to the nearby tire place this weekend, and I squashed that immediately. I have no experience riding it, and she's more than eight months preggers. It will wait.

I have packed up all my convention material except my current sketchbook and the laptop. Everything else is bagged or boxed. I can easily park my car and carry everything to my table. The con is offering curbside car-watching while we "guests" unload to our assigned area. I won't need it. I can park on the museum roof deck and walk there and back. I've covered all my bases for equipment, and I have nothing left to fret over. I just have to show up and hawk my paltry wares. I did get a suggestion for hand sanitizer from a con pro I know, and I'll pick some up before Saturday morning. Also, table snacks. I have none. I scouted the museum and my assigned space has an outlet. I'll take my laptop. This paragraph now hold the world record for Most Uses of the I Pronoun.

Roo is constantly moving, and it's substantial. I don't even wait for Your Sister to move my hand to her belly. I rest my palm there and feel him shuffle around.

Windows 7's ad campaign continues to educate me. Apparently it can simulate PowerPoint, a feature I had no idea about. I also discovered I have free chess and Scrabble game. Thank God I learned about this after drawing the comics. My next projects are a tattoo design for one of Your Sister's friends, more semiweekly comics, and making library signs for the high school. Also gardening and running and maybe raising a child. We haven't discussed the names since last week, but my preferences haven't changed.

Just saying: Lost was odd his week Good, but odd. There's another new episode next Tuesday and then the big blow-out series finale airs next Sunday.

Picture of the Day
Fanaticon is the cover story this week. The organizers also spent a half hour talking comics on one of the local radio shows yesterday. It's the event this weekend. I continue to argue with myself about how much I'm charging for the comics. The side that says "cheaper is better" wins out. I don't want to price myself out of sales, and a small b/w comic shouldn't cost as much as a full-size color comic.

I'm planning to wear my Fantastic Four logo shirt under a white-button up. That's my casual costume.

Tuesday, May 11

Does Whatever An Iron Can

We both arrived home at the same time -- me from work, her from a meeting at the college -- and piled into her truck of a car and zoomed to the theatre. We caught Iron Man 2, making this film the second we've seen in a theatre this year, and they both star Downey. That's not by design. We discovered that cinemas now offer blue trays to carry all your food items to the seats. It make sense for larger families, but for us it felt like a trough of gorging.

We saw the film, and dissected it as always over hot and fresh Krispy Kreme doughnuts. It's much like the first film intone, and you can tell it's made my virtually the same people. It's a little thicker, but consistent with the first film's attitude and style. If anything handicaps it, it's that the first film had surprise on its side. The cast is strong, and there is a post-credits tidbit to tease the next Marvel film. I properly geeked out.

Your Sis thinks she could catch the Robin Hood movie coming out this week in theatres, but she was not comfortable during the movie last night. She was distracted by Roo and claimed she could feel something triangular moving around. She assumes it was a foot. I don't think I can drive her to the next county, sit her in a theatre chair for two hours, and drive her back home with a clear conscience (What if she drives? Work with me here.). We have plenty of DVDs, a TiFaux, and NetFlix. The last NetFlix film we watched was Wall-E, and we gave up after 45 minutes. We were bored. We have no heart.

She moved all the diapers to the storage room bookshelves. It's now an armory for the butt. An ass-ory? An arse-enal?

Picture of the Day
I was never sure if that was all her hair. I assume not. It has to take years to grow that long.

Monday, May 10

Packed Weekend

A quick dinner at a bar Friday night turned into a parade of people we hadn't seen in forever. A pregnant stranger walked by and exchanged notes with Your Sister about due dates and movement. Her fetus had clearly dropped, something that hasn't happened yet with Your Sis. We're at 34 weeks today, with only six weeks left until the due date.

She took my monster mini to school to show off and made copies of the last page for her students to draw on. That feature went over like gangbusters, I hear, and two girls handed her their designs. I used them to start my online gallery. I hope every issue I sell at the convention leads to an entry.

As Your Sis and I surveyed the garden space, we realized a nearby peach tree was most sincerely dead, and I was commissioned to make it go away. Chopping down a tree is a satisfying experience. Particularly if it's a smallish tree. That done, I weeded the yard of all the nice yellow flowers she insists are weeds. With hands and arms shot, we went to lunch and to get garden stuff. We returned with five 50-pound bags of cow manure, fertilizer water additive, packets of seeds, and a few tomato plants. I set everything out to work with the next day, and we killed time before heading out for prom.

She wore a maternity shirt from Target and a black skirt, and I wore the suit bought for last year's work convention. I bought her the new Madonna concert CD for Mother's Day, and we cranked it in her new car's stereo. Roo immediately got active. I reached over and felt limbs move around, and he stayed moving until we got to the dinner restaurant. His movements dwindled over the next half hour. In the restaurant, we saw kids in their prom finery and overheard the other sharing their prom memories.

Dinner didn't take as long as we thought, and we killed time in Target before heading toward the prom. I have longed hoped to bedeck her in fashion jewelry from department stores, and I found a gaudy fake emerald ring she considered for about two seconds before putting back on the shelf. But then I thought of my high school ring and realized she could wear that. I should have thought of it for the prom, but she agreed to wear it to school Monday to extend our prom story. And finally after 20 years, a girl I took to prom has agreed to wear my school ring. It's a minor victory for our hero.

Prom was great. The kids looked sharp in a spectrum of dresses I hadn't seen before. I'm accustomed to a short range of colors and styles, but this collection of gals was muy diverso. Fabulousness reigned. We of course hit the free photo booth, and I posted those pics at FaceBook. The party was at the same country club as last year's, and it was again a perfect size for the number of kids. It was, unlike last year, freezing, and that eliminated the likelihood of kids sneaking onto the golf courses. They may have been further encouraged by how lovely Your Sister looked in the full blossom of maternity. A few teachers congratulated me on the monster comic, and I spread the word to the more arty kids. People sound excited for the show. I'm so releived to have the comics in hand that I'm almost nonchalant about the convention.

The tiller I rented was waiting for me Saturday morning, and the garden was officially begun on Sunday morning. I waited until 10 a.m. to be polite to the neighbors. People who crank up small yard engines before then should be pummeled. I chopped up the topsoil a few times. The small size of the tiller made it handy to steer by a pain to shove out of deep soil. My back was killing me. Also my hands were shot from tree-chopping and working the tiller handlebars. I spread almost 300 pounds of manure onto the soil and tilled that together before we headed out for groceries.

I waited until later in the day to plant the seeds and hopped online. I discovered an email questionnaire for the Asheville paper. I sent my answers along with the covers of the minis and a new photo of me freshly taken by Your Sis. I'm very curious to see where and how big it runs. I'm assuming it will be in the weekend tabloid.

Then I planted the garden. We've got lettuce, carrots, cilantro (all first-time tries), tomatoes, squash, and bell peppers. We used maybe half the garden space, and we'll plant more later in the summer.

That night, we wrote thank-you cards for the shower gifts and discussed the finances for the next year. If she takes a year off, we seem able to afford it. We think it's feasible, and I won't have to sacrifice too many Starbucks drinks. Priorities. I didn't sleept well, and I blame the aches of the weekend. I should have Adviled.

Before going to work this morning, I took the printer people two boxes of doughnuts. Tonight, we hope to see Iron Man 2. That's when I'll get my own doughnuts.

Birth Announcement of the Day