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Odds and Ends

September 30, 2003

So where did September go, anyway?

This week I thought I'd write about a few of the goings on in the wonderful world of self-publishing and the wonderful city of Venice.

First, I'm working on a sort-of new project. It's big. I spent all of my free time during September--which unfortunately wasn't much--working on it. And I'll probably be working on it all through the months of October, November, and December. What is it? I can't say. Not yet. All I can say is, I'm very excited about it and I think you will be, too.

I was recently asked--So where is ALTERCATIONS 2? This question was posed to me by my cat, Austin, who was the model for the stray cat featured in chapter 4 of ALTERCATIONS 1, "At the Mercy of the Monopolist." Austin has made more than a few not-so-subtle hints that he expects "at least a cameo" in volume 2. For example, he recently drank an entire bottle of acid and proceeded to urinate onto my favorite dinner jacket, elegantly spelling out the words "feature me or this is only the beginning, you bastard." My initial reaction was to merely let it go. So I did. I put on my dinner jacket and sat down to enjoy a grilled cheese sandwich dinner. Unfortunately, the acid-filled urine burned through my jacket, my shirt, and, ultimately, my skin. It wasn't easy explaining this one to the pediatrician--and why I chose to see a pediatrician for a urine burn is anyone's guess, though I do admit to obtaining a selfish pleasure from the myraid of Colorforms in the waiting area (my favorite of which are the popular Omen and Damien: Omen II varieties). However, the pediatrician was quite understanding and helpful regarding my dilemma, saying, "There's a nice boy! Did the wittle kitty cat go pee pee on your din din jacket? Is that what the widdle kittle wittle did? Maybe I go pee pee on a candy bar and give it to you. Would you like that? Me go pee pee on a candy bar?"
Although curious, I declined the offer of a pee-soaked Snicker's bar (opting instad for a Milky Way), but realized almost immediately I should have gone with the Snicker's. WHY? I'm glad you asked.
Many, many years ago I'd gotten lost in the woods of southeastern Pennsylvania. I was, maybe, 12 years old. While wondering through the seemingly endless forest and wiping the seemingly endless tears of panic from my soft, delicious eyes, I found myself face to snout with a tremendous black bear, a common occurrence in the woods of Pennsylvania--ask any 12 year old. As I gazed past his killer snarl, I realized the bear had stumbled upon a crate of Snicker's bars that had seemingly fallen from the sky. I was tired, hungry, and not quite a teenager. It didn't matter to me that the bear could most likely rip my face off with one swipe of a huge claw. What mattered to me was the cache of Snicker's bars and shoving them down my throat and into me gulliver. Ultimately, we played a game of truth or dare, with the bear daring me (a bear dare, go figure) to, well, let's just say I had to add a bit of mello-yello liquid to one of the bars and then consume it. I've said too much already about the incident, and no doubt some rotten conservative is already contacting the National Forest Adminstration. I'm sure I'm gonna be ratted out--but don't get me started on rat, we'll be here all night...

This is what sleep deprivation and Los Angeles do to a person.

Those two or three individuals looking for the remainder of the Yurkovich-Threshold transcripts are in for a bit of bad news. The following letter was sent to the offices of Sleeping Giant Comics on September 23, 2003:

To Whom it May Concern:

This letter constitues official cease and desist orders for the online publication of transcripts created from a group discussion between David Yurkovich and the Philadelphia-based crime-fighting operatives Cosmopolitan, Recoil, Mr. Malevolence, and Meridian (hereafter to be referred to as Threshold). Furthermore, the transcripts are not to be distributed in nonelectronic formats of any sort including publication or distribution by paper or other means without the express written consent of Threshold and its management.

Failure to comply with this order will result in further legal action against Mr. Yurkovich and Sleeping Giant Comics.


Kathleen Doyle-Kraumowicz, Esq.
Tannenbaum, Doyle-Kraumowicz, Spenser-Hildebrant, Mahoney & O'Leary-Allen-Sphifler, PC

Well, it's not the first lawsuit I've faced. Unfortunately, until the matter is resolved, it will not be possible to post the concluding sections of the Yurkovich-Threshold tapes, of which there is plenty more to come.

Los Angeles in September...was not too different from Los Angeles in August. It was a bit quieter, which can only be attributed to the start of school. But the loud cars still drive loudly up and down the street, the loud groundskeepers still keep the ground quite noisily, the street vendors selling produce from their trucks still blare their horns (which have been customized to play a melody of la coo-ka-racha), the trash collection trucks still crawl slowly down the street every Wednesday from 8:00 am through 2:00 pm like an army of Killdozers waiting intent on taking over the world (while simultaneously keeping it semi-clean), and the obnoxious strangers still show up at irregular intervals at 513 Indiana Avenue and shout "Amanda!" several dozen times per day to a person who never seems to reply. In math terms I guess it could be summarized as: Venice = Noise.

I haven't had time to write creative fiction or to read any fiction--prose or illustrated. Not much time at all lately. But this, I'm confident, will pass. I'm extremely confident. I'm also extremely tired.

Good evening.

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