Saturday, March 04, 2006

Saturday Night Blogging

So... here's the wrap-up from today...

Weight Watchers: It was looking to be a great week for me, until this morning... at weigh-in, I'd only lost .8 lbs. Jessi figures it was the air-popped popcorn on Friday night that did me in (the cheese seasoning we use has salt, which could have caused me to retain some water). This week, I'll make sure no popcorn after Wednesday!

Post-Meeting: We walked the dogs, doing three miles ourselves, then home for breakfast. After breakfast, I grabbed a quick shower while Jessi continued reading the book Wicked, which is the story of The Wicked Witch of the West from The Wizard of Oz, told from her perspective. After that, we got the dogs put to bed, and headed north to Tacoma, first making a stop at Big Lots, where we picked up some low-point snacks, some bones for the dogs, and a few other items we needed.

Then it was up to Tacoma, to meet my parents at their house. From there, we went to lunch at Jack-In-The-Box, and after lunch, it was over to this new bakery that just opened near there, as well Trader Joe's, which Jessi and I had never been to before. We also looked in at the Big Lots right next to those locations. After that, I dropped my dad off at his house, while Jessi and Mom went out to do some window shopping for flowers for the wedding.

Mom offered to take care of all the floral arrangements, but she still needed to know what Jessi liked... so that's what they went off to do, while I did a few errands around Tacoma. I first went to a Dollar Tree to see if I could find any more of the 8 1/2 x 11 padded envelopes that our local DT had sold out of... and was successful! Then I was off to yet another Big Lots, where I found some 2-point granola bars. Then was the best stop of all...

Some Comic Book Store Owners Are Incredibly Cool: I hadn't been to Comic Book Ink's new location yet, so I figured I'd stop by and check the place out. Fortunately for me, owner John Munn was there, and we did some catching up while I looked at his new location.

Friends, John should be writing a book on how to set up a comic book shop. As impressed as I always was with his original location, his new store is even better... a model of comic book shops! It's amazingly clean, well-organized, bright, and professional-looking. There's nothing slip-shod or tacky about it. Some time soon, I'll get photos of the store and run them here.

As we were talking, something caught my attention... a hardback book with the words "Star Hawks" on the spine. Now, I don't know if you know this or not, but back in the very late 1970s/early 1980s, there was a brilliant science-fiction newspaper strip by that name written by Ron Goulart, with art by Gil Kane. I loved this strip, and later, when I was reading The Comic Reader, and after that, Amazing Heroes, one big reason for my getting those zines was the Star Hawks reprints in them. There had been a few reprints of Star Hawks in the early to mid-80s which I bought, but the only one I had left was the pocket paperback sized volume, which I hadn't read for some time, but still sits on my bookshelf.

So, I saw that, and said to John, "Oh my god, someone did a hardback reprint of Star Hawks?" We went to that shelf, and John pulled it out and let me look at it... the quality of this book was just amazing... the reproduction is crisp and sharp... I wanted this book something awful... and I looked at the back cover and saw the price tag... $49.95.

My heart sunk. I did not have the budget left to spend on this book, and what were the odds that I'd come across a copy again?

That's when John demonstrated that he is one of the coolest people ever. He said, "You know, I won't be able to make it to your wedding. It's yours, an early wedding present."

I feel like I could not possibly come up with the words to express my gratitude. Just saying, "Thank you" was not nearly enough. I mean, yes, I was a customer of the shop when I was still in Tacoma, for about three or four months, but the last time I had bought anything from them was a year or more ago (an issue of Teen Titans Go! that I wanted for Jessi).

I know that Comic Book Ink is doing fairly well in their new location, but they both need and deserve more business. If you happen to find yourself in Tacoma, WA and want to see what a truly great comic book shop is like, head on over to the corner of 72nd and Portland Ave... and even if you're not ever going to be there, check out their web site at, and tell 'em I sent ya, okay?

Post-Comic Book Ink Visit: I called Jessi on the cell phone after leaving CBI, because I couldn't wait to tell her how cool John is, and found she was still shopping. So I headed over to the Tacoma location of Toys R Us just to look around. I had been thinking that I needed some kind of Krypto item to put at my desk at work, and TRU happened to have a new Krypto action figure I didn't have yet (actually, they had a lot that I didn't have, but my budget didn't allow me to get Bat-Hound, Mechani-Kat, or any of the Dog Star Patrol members), which only set me back about $6.00. Then I started to make my way back to my parents' house, getting some gas in the car en route.

As I continued to head back, Jessi called to let me know she was already at the house, and when I got there, she and my mom were chatting. We ended up staying for dinner (thin crust delite pizza from Papa Murphy's), and called our friend Kathy to see if she could let the dogs out to potty... and she offered to take them to her place so they could play with her boxer, Jaeger. We watched this week's Monk episode while eating, and then headed back home, first stopping at Kathy's to get the dogs (and so that Jessi could solve a few sudoku puzzles). Not long after that, Jessi was tired, and went to sleep, but of course, I had to write this blog entry!


Friday, March 03, 2006

Short Infinite Crisis thought...

OK, I just realized why Superboy-Prime is so messed up...

It's not because he's the last survivor of the Earth-Prime universe...

...or that he was stuck in "Heaven" with only Alex Luthor, Superman and Lois Lane (the latter two of Earth-2) for all that time...

...or that he thinks there's something messed up with the current DCU Earth.

I mean, we've had how many Superboys in continuity since DC began? There is, of course, the original, the Earth-1 Superboy. Then, we had Superboy-Prime. Then, post-Crisis, there was the Pocket Universe Superboy (who was, for a while, the Superboy who was in the Legion, post-Crisis), and then we have the clone Superboy spun out of "Reign of the Supermen."

What do all those Superboys have in common that Superboy-Prime doesn't?

Answer: They all had a Krypto.

Earth-1's Superboy had his Krypto from Krypton. The Pocket Universe Superboy had to have a Krypto, because otherwise there couldn't have been a Legion of Super-Pets, and what we saw of the PU Superboy (and the Legion crossover with Superman from around the same period) showed us that all LSH continuity was valid up to that point. Heck, the clone Superboy has had two Krypto's -- the first was the white mutt that Bibbo gave him, and the second is, of course, the Krypto from the possible Krypton past that Superman visited via the Phantom Zone.

Earth-Prime Superboy? I don't believe he had a Krypto. Or any dog, for that matter.

Of course, I don't have the issue of DC Comics Presents that introduced him, so I can't double-check that. But I'm pretty sure I'm right.

Oh, all right, so there were no Jonathan and Martha Kent to raise him or teach him, either. But I'm pretty sure it's the "Krypto Effect."

More proof that DC needs to do more with their current Super-Dog!

(By the way, I am happy to hear that there's going to be a Krypto mini-series, based on the animated series -- I just wonder why the heck they waited so long to do it!)


Friday Night Blogging

OK, let's see what I have to talk about tonight...

Work Stuff: So things are finally picking up at work. How do I judge this? Because I've hardly had any free time to work on my computers/internet tabloid spec publication. And I have about 45 minutes of overtime for this week.

There's a job opening that I'm considering applying for... the position is an addition to the spec department, which has been one person. For those who don't know, spec -- short for speculation, natch -- ads are those ads created for customers who haven't actually committed to running an ad yet. Or sometimes it's for a customer who wants to rework the look of their ads.

Anyway... the person who's been doing the job is way, way overworked, so they've decided to hire a second person to do that (the job also involves laying out special sections). I know one of my co-workers in my department has already applied for it, and someone who used to work at the paper has applied for it, too (in fact, they seemed to know about the opening before it was announced). Rumor has it that this person may already "have" the job, but the paper has to make a show of things.

So like I said, I'm considering applying for it. If I do decide to go for it, I'll have to find my resume on the 'puter and update it... and then figure out what the heck I'd wear for interviews, because I don't have any interview clothes that fit any more!

In other work stuff... this week, I was approached to do the cover for our Apartment Finder publication... a pseudo-Godzilla attacking the city, with the line, "Looking for a new neighborhood? We can help." If I remembered to save the PDF of the cover to Yahoo or even emailed it to me, I'd share it with you here. Originally, we wanted to do a "King Kong" type of thing, but couldn't find an appropriate gorilla image that wouldn't be a gross violation of copyright.

The cover does look very cool, though, and I'll share it with you guys next week.

Comics Stuff: I made it to the comics shop today, and picked up the last two issues each of Infinite Crisis, Teen Titans Go!, and Justice League Unlimited. Somehow, I also got the last Green Lantern. I also got the latest Franklin Richards one-shot. TPB-wise, I picked up the DCU: Alan Moore book (which I've already read) and the Greatest Stories JLA book (which I'm close to reading all of... in fact, the remaining stories are ones I've read previously)... and the Showcase Green Arrow book.

The Moore TPB was interesting... a lot of those stories I hadn't read before.

The JLA TPB was also interesting. Although to be honest, it really doesn't deserve to be called "Greatest Stories," because it's pretty much stuff that relates to Identity Crisis and Infinite Crisis... heck, the introduction to the book pretty much says that's the case!

Fortunately, none of the stories reprinted were those in the Showcase JLA book, nor were any of them in the Crisis on Multiple Earths TPBs, so I don't feel like I've duplicated anything by buying it (in point of fact, two of the stories reprinted are ones that were in issues of Justice League of America that I recently sold!).

I would've liked to have seen more 60s and 70s stuff in that volume, however... and hopefully, there'll be a second volume sometime in the future.

eBay Stuff: Finally have a bid on one of the 25 auctions I've got up. Yep, a bid. As in one. These auctions close Sunday, and only one has a bid. I'm expecting that things will pick up as the weekend progresses. And, too, I know there's been an influx of new fixed price listings thanks to eBay doing a 10 cent insertion day for fixed price listings. So we'll see.

Once the stuff that's up is sold or I decide I'm not going to relist it again, I may take a break from selling for a while... primarily because I've about run out of stuff to sell!

Weekend Stuff: Saturday, of course, begins with Weight Watchers, walking the dogs, and breakfast. After that, however, things will vary... we're going up to Tacoma so that my mom and Jessi can go out shopping for flowers for the wedding. What the heck will I be doing during this time? Will I go with them, or just hang out at the house? Will we take my car, and hope that mom and Jessi take my mom's van, so I can do some other running around? Wait and see...

Not much else planned for the weekend, however. If I have time, I may work on some more columns for World Famous Comics (you do read Cover Stories there every Sunday, don't you?). I need to do some re-scheduling of some columns, as I've noticed there's a big gap between "Comics They Never Made" entries... and it's about time I debuted some there... maybe the Marx Bros. comics?


Bizarre Dream

I'll try to blog more later today, if not tomorrow... but I had to share this with you guys.

I had a strange dream last night... I was watching TV with Jessi (I didn't see her in the dream, but I know she was there because I was talking to her) and we were watching an old "Superman" cartoon... but this was one that was never made.

We're watching this -- in black and white, which is odd, as there were never Superman cartoons in B&W -- and seeing the opening of it, and there's a song over the titles, with singers... I remember hearing the line, "You'll see him go flying through the air...." and remarking to Jessi that it was made by Famous Studios, who had taken over from the Fleischers.

As if that wasn't strange enough, that was accompanied by the visual of titles reading "With Krypto the Superdog" -- done in the style of the classic Superman logo -- with a stop-motion animated Krypto flying in and landing (looking like a Curt Swan semi-greyhound Krypto) and telling Jessi that I watched dozens of these cartoons as a kid, and Krypto never, ever showed up in them!

To the best of my knowledge, Famous Studios didn't do any Supermans... there were a few Paramounts finishing up the series, I believe. The only black and white Superman stuff were the serials and the first season or two of the George Reeves series. Plus, I believe by the time Krypto appeared in the comics, nobody was doing black-and-white any more for movies or tv. And then there's the stop-motion aspects of it!

I have no idea where any of this stuff came from, or how it coalesced in my subconscious to create this dream.

The theme song was very similar in style to other Famous Studios cartons, such as the "Little Audrey" series.

I just had to share.


Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Tuesday Morning Blogging

Let's see if this will even post... Blogger's been running very slow lately, as I'm sure many of you noticed who check lots of blogs!


Work Stuff: Finished my notes on the Summer Fun tab, and presented it and the Wedding Tab to the head of advertising sales. I'm not sure what'll become of either of those... I'd already hear the Wedding Tab probably wouldn't happen until January, but they did like the Summer Fun idea. I'm thinking my next tab idea will be a bit more out there, appealing to a smaller group... like "Eating Healthy" or something like that, and I can use my own recipies I'd created for Weight Watchers there!

Got a buy it now sale on some modern Teen Titans issues, but the rest of my auctions have no bids. Still, I can't really complain!

I'm hoping this Friday I'll make it to the comics shop and pick up the stuff that's been piling up for me! I'll do quick write-ups if that's the case.

Evenings after Jessi goes to sleep this week, I'm working on new columns for WF Comics... I'm nearing the end of my first year doing "Cover Stories," believe it or not, which means I've been doing this blog for over a year now, too!


Sunday, February 26, 2006

It's This 'n That Time!

So... where did I leave off last time? Checking the last entry... and let's go!

Work Week Wrap-Up

I finished the week off about half an hour short of 40 hours... this despite finishing the mock-up for the wedding tabloid spec (which I'm told probably won't happen until January, which I think is a mistake. We could probably get something together in a month and still get a good pub out of it), and working up a spec for a "Summer Fun" tab (the spec is built and printed, I just want to write up my thoughts on it, which I'll likely get done Monday).


Yes, there are new auctions up... as well as some relisted items. My seller ID on eBay is jon8229, so if you're so inclined, check 'em out!

Argh, It's Stuck in My Head!

So earlier this week, the oldies station (which is playing way too much 70s and 80s stuff for my tastes, but I digress) played this song, "Lonely Boy" or something like that... not the Paul Anka song, this was a one-hit wonder. The song talks about this boy born in 1951, the only son, his parents teach him what they learned, dress him real warmly and send him to school, they teach him how to fight and be nobody's fool... then the chorus, "Oh, oh what a lonely boy," repeated a few times. Second verse, a sister is born, and the lonely buy cries because his parents lied, when they said he was their only son, he thought he was the only one... chorus repeats, then final verse, he leaves home in 1969, in search of the love he lost in the earlier time, his sister gets married, has a boy, and the cycle starts all over again...

...and the damn song is stuck in my head now. And it's a particularly stupid song, because nothing in the lyrics other than the chorus says that he's lonely or why he's even lonely! The boy in the song is a selfish, self-centered idiot, if you ask me.

Hopefully, I'll hear a different song soon to get stuck in my head.

RIP Don Knotts and Darrin McGavin

Every other blog is mentioning their passing, I may as well, too. I wasn't really much of a Don Knotts fan until a few years ago, and watching the occasional Andy Griffith re-run. I'd seen him as Barney Fife before, and saw him on Three's Company, obviously... but his TV work, I wasn't all that fond of (although I did enjoy him in "The Incredible Mr. Limpet") until a few years back.

But despite that, I do have a kind of Don Knotts-related anecdote. I never met the man, but when I was in the navy, on my first ship, my best buddy there was a hospital corpsman, John (whose last name has been erased from my brain, no doubt replaced by some comics factoid) who did an uncanny Don Knotts impression... and he even looked like Don when he did it! I found this out when sick bay had me videotape a presentation for them to be shown every time the ship visited the Philippines. While the video was titled "Phil Street Blues," the highlight was John's appearance as Barney... and I wish I had a tape of it.

Darrin McGavin, of course, I was a fan of since Kolchak, the Night Stalker... and even moreso when I learned he was born in Tacoma, Washington (where I've lived most of my life... basically grew up there). I never met him, either.

Other Weekend Stuff

Jessi and I attended the local Wedding Expo on Saturday... and ye gods and little fishes, some of these people want way too much money for what they do! We're definitely not hiring a professional photographer or professional musicians!

Today, Sunday, Jessi and her friend Amanda headed to Seattle to catch the ferry to Bainbridge Island for the "Chilly Hilly," a 35-mile cold and hilly bike ride. Originally, Amanda's husband, Dan and I were going to go along, and while they were riding, Dan and I were going to go to Pike Place Market and a few other places. However, Dan's sick, so he wasn't going to be able to go... and since they were taking Amanda's car (which I don't feel comfortable driving), I elected to stay home, so I could take the dogs for their walk, and work on auctions, as well as watch some DVR recordings that Jessi has no interest in.

What I saw was the end of the Graham Chapman edition of Monty Python's Personal Best, and all of the Eric Idle one, as well as Saturday's JLU episode (which was way too cool... they did the Seven Soldiers of Victory without calling them that... I mean, that's who they were... Green Arrow and Speedy, Shining Knight, Vigilante, Crimson Avenger, Stargirl, STRIPE... that's who they were! Could've knocked me over with a brick when Speedy appeared, wearing the same costume he wore on Teen Titans!) and an episode of My Hero. I still have lots of regular Python eps to watch, as well as three or four eps of the Prisoner, and tonight, Red Dwarf is taping (it's actually starting now!).

Anyway... it's after midnight, and I should head off to bed... but before I do, I got a call from Andy Mangels today, and March will be a busy month for me, transcription-wise... BCI/Eclipse is finishing up their He-Man stuff, and they're moving on to She-Ra, Princess of Power, Flash Gordon, and one other series from Filmation (maybe it's Bravestarr, I don't know). I may be getting a video a day for a while to work on, with some segments needed by the end of March, and others which can wait... but I'll try to blog fairly regularlly to keep you up to date!