Letters to Holly

Thursday, April 28

Good Night, Bad Night

Your Sister was feeding the sidekick when I got home, and she was finishing up to leave for yoga. That left me and the boy to try again. I let him play and crawl around a bit. Eventually he told me when he was ready to pack it in by trying to climb up my legs. I bathed him and took him to the nursery with a bottle of milk. We read a little. He's good at turning pages when prompted. Before we could make a second run through the baby animal book, he turned into me and cuddled up. He was done. I fed him a little, but he wasn't into it so much. Maybe 2 ounces. I scooped him up, and he flailed with sleep spasms. He calmed down by watching the ceiling fan spin, and his eyes slowly closed, and he was asleep with his mouth wide open. I put him down, and he slept for a few hours. I cuddled him back to sleep around 9 and gave him a few more ounces before we went to bed. It was a much better night than Tuesday. And it proved I can again put him down for the evening. Victory.

Then the storms came in. We are fine. The house is fine. But it was a long, long night of hail and constant lightning. As I drove to work, the downhill we jogged Sunday morning was covered in debris suggesting it was covered in water throughout the night. That's a buncha water. Didn't lose power though. That's amazing. And the sidekick slept through it all. I am currently powered by coffee. I also am wracking my brain to come up with Mother's Day ideas for Your Sister.

I'm trying to add Amazon shopping cart to my website to sell the minicomics, but Amazon doesn't make it easy. Neither does PayPal. I changed my PayPal password in the wake of the massive Sony PS3 network hack that has continued to leave the gaming system without online access. That's a major selling point for the Sony system, and millions of folks are in danger of fraud and identity theft.

Easter Weekend Conversation-Related Picture of the Day
Here's Andrew Garfield (whom you saw in Social Network) as Peter Parker. He seemed very tall in that film, and Spidey is usually a small guy.

Moving Picture of the Day
Tarsem, the director who made such a splash with REM's Losing My Religion video and later The Cell, has directed a film that mixes Clash of the Titans with 300

Wednesday, April 27

Flier Distribution Report

I took my lunch break to go to the Asheville downtown area to post my 8x11 flier in con-friendly stores. I went first to Malaprops, which displays a sign telling us hopefuls to hand our fliers to the front desk. I did so and was told they clear out the bulletin board every week. They do not maintain a "to post" folder of fliers for future events. And they don't clear the bulletin board on the same day each week. I decided to come back the week of the convention to post my flier. I didn't even get to the question of which one -- coupon or non-coupon -- to hand them.

True Blue, in contrast, has a "to post" folder for their TWO events displays: the interior bulletin board and the window storefront. I gave them both types of fliers, and they seemed keen on my notion of a roller derby/convention double header in the civic center.

I took the auction piece to the museum, and they seemed thrilled with the gesture. Didn't even look at it. Because I donated a piece, I'll get into the auction party/dance/kibbitz fest free. It feels weird releasing the piece into the wild. I haven't made a piece for an auction before. It's somewhat standard in comic conventions, but I haven't been on this side of the tale before. I had to assign a value to the piece for tax receipt purposes, and I settled on $70. Given my level of polish, I think that's fair.

I hit the comic store, and they took a coupon flier and appreciated the idea of randomly removed coupon slips to imply demand. I last went by Ingles and was told they clear their board at the end of the month. I'll wait until next week to post a flier there. Then I scurried back to work.

I looked at downtown with new eyes, seeing all potential display spaces. I'll post fliers on lamp posts with the band ads closer to time.

I'm now working on the table display. I need to pick up some pamphlet stands to hold the comics, and I need to make signs for the sketches and comic prices. I can use some items I bought for last year's table.

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I had a bad moment with the sidekick last night. He wouldn't eat. He turned his head and cried to protest. It's food he likes -- sweet potatoes -- and he seemed to refuse out of whim, not out of fatigue or diaper. I got frustrated. I eventually ditched the spoon and crammed bites into his mouth with my fingers. Your Sister objected and took over.

I didn't think I was being mean. I've previously taken to holding his head steady to feed him, and we've both squirted him to focus him on the task at hand. But my interactions with him on weekdays are fewer now. I feed him supper and bathe him. That's it. Your Sister puts him down with nursing, and I have a few moments with him in the mornings. We don't have the number of connections that he does with his mom. We're on a simpler and limited exchange, and when I see him at night, he's sleepy and often cranky. If I didn't get food in him, I'd get bumped. If I did it the way she didn't like, I'd get bumped. I have a very small window of success and a limited time to figure it out. How did she get him to eat? By waiting him out. I was impatient. I'll do it better tonight, if she'll let me.

The thing that I most appreciate about this kid -- the thing I wish I could replicate -- is his natural ability to treat each day with a clean slate. No matter how bad the previous night was, he holds no grudge the next day. I have too many grudges. I have a grudge orchard. I'm not proud of this.

Picture of the Day
Lady Gaga and a classic Disney villain. I'm not what I'd call a fan of Gaga, but I love the production on her songs. As pop music becomes indistinguishable from house music, her material at least has an edge that surpasses Katy Perry's, who plays cheeky and coy. Gaga funnels anger in her songs, and I gravitate toward that, but she's not afraid to enjoy herself. Perry, in contrast, wants us to watch her enjoy herself. She's an exhibitionist where Gaga is a showman. There's a difference.

Tuesday, April 26


While making sketch cards to sell at the convention, I realized I didn't much care for the Captain America sketch I did.

It's almost exactly the image I had in mind, but it came out weak. That mouth is distracting. It gives me "eh."

So I decided to try another angle, and it came out stronger, more dramatic.

And then I realized it was similar to the Wonder Woman I drew.

And I thought how easy and kinda fun it would be to make all the sketch cards from the same angle.  Like, say, Batman.

And now I have decided my con sketches will have this theme. I can sketch out the head template and fill it in with requested characters at the show. I can call them "head shots" or "face cards." This could be good.

I made the fliers, complete with random missing coupon slips, and I hope to put them in stores Tuesday during lunch. I'll also make some to post in stores around our house.

After the exhaustion of completing and printing the comic, I'm now jazzed again for the show. I have comics and a sketch gimmick.

Mad Rhymes of the Day
If one were a Beasties fan, one might hear their new album free right here.

Monday, April 25

Beware My Power ...

We did very little after you left. The sidekick staggered around the deck with the panda roller, and I made additional sketch cards by slicing up art boards. We made a pizza and watched Doctor Who.

I still plan to pass around the fliers Tuesday, but now I intend to remove a few of their detachable coupons to suggest demand. The convention just released their schedule with parties the night before and immediately after the convention, including a drag show at Scandal's. I'm thinking I'll skip that; the drive home is too high a price for that time of night.

Moving Picture of the Day
The first true trailer for Green Lantern has been released, and it's impressively impressive.

Warner Brothers enjoys the success of the Batman franchise in cartoons and films and toys, but they only recently realized they have a giant library of hero materials in DC to make use of. Green Lantern is their first foray into the film genre Marvel has dominated (we won't count Jonah Hex as it was a western and a dud). This plays up the cosmic scope of the GL franchise, and that's something Marvel doesn't dabble in as successfully. It also looks like a lot of money was thrown at the film, giving comic fans the confidence that Warner and DC are really trying to reach the hero-film audience. Reynolds makes a credible-looking Lantern, and I'm glad they went with the Hal Jordan character. Earth as a handful of Lanterns, but Jordan is the most recognizable.