Friday, January 09, 2004

A Piece of Me -- This morning was quite unusual for me. I saw my children off to school.

I'm going to be 38 years old later this month, I've had kids for over a decade now, and although I used to pick them up at daycare and drop them off at school a few years ago in an extremely awkward arrangement made necessary by my schedule, for the past few years they've been taken to school either by their mother or by our more recent daycare provider. My wife and I both work, and it will come as no surprise to anyone who works and has kids that daycare is an extremely difficult proposition these days. Should the United States ever start caring about its people enough to provide health care for everyone, quality universal daycare would be a noble secondary goal that would probably send productivity through the roof. But I digress.

I took today off because we had no other daycare options, and I have marginally more time off coming to me at the moment than my wife -- and someone needed to get the kids to school. As I say, this is the first time in a few years now that I have done the entire rigamorole, from waking 'em up to getting 'em to the school door and everything in between. In between, of course, is breakfast.

Dad made scrambled eggs and toast, and although he was tempted to make the turkey bacon sitting in the fridge, that seemed like too much work protein for this early in the day.

Dad did dress up the eggs with a little bit of real cheddar cheese that we were gifted with by someone who considers Swiss Colony a viable holiday offering. Well, whatever, the cheese was good and made the eggs a little above-average. Who the hell eats orange marmalade, though? Gack.

After breakfast the kids played videogames on their X-Mas Gamecube and Dad took the latest shower he's had in years. I usually have to be out the door and on the way to work well before dawn, but waiting until quarter of eight seemed positively decadent. In a way, it was, because before I knew it, we were actually running a bit late.

We started the car -- which didn't want to start, since the temperature is somewhere around zero right now -- and while we waited for it to warm up my daughter drank a juice-box thing of some sort and my son made explosion sound effects. He's eight. It's amazing how little it takes to entertain yourself at that age.

Eventually the heat started working and the window began defrosting and since I now had three minutes to get the kids to the door, we were on our way, hardly breaking any traffic laws at all. Almost none!

Right at the time my wife told me to have them at the curb, we were there. The street in front of the school seemed less busy than I remembered it being when I used to bring them to school every day (wow, that was nearly five years ago now) -- but with temps in the single digits, loitering is really not a viable entertainment option for me or my fellow parents.

Hugs and kisses were doled out -- they're at the nice age where they not only don't mind, but actually want affection from their parents -- and off they went to a day full of spelling tests and other assorted learning, and hopefully a recess or two. They work hard, they deserve it.

Wednesday, January 07, 2004

My Review Archive is Back -- My thanks to the great folks at Simply Comics for providing web space to host my reviews from the Comic Book Galaxy days.

Kochalka Alert -- James Kochalka has produced a new mini-comic called The Cute Manifesto. His last self-produced mini, Reinventing Everything (my review is here) was one of the best things he's ever done, and by the way is still available as well. Ordering details are here.

Tuesday, January 06, 2004

Ch-ch-changes -- 2004 will be a year of change for the comics blogosphere, I believe, and the first big blow has been announced: Derek Martinez is going on hiatus.

Derek's been a sporadic but extremely high-quality blogger, and I do hope he gets past the factors that led him to this decision. The internet's a poorer place without his input.

Derek, just a personal note: You've been a loyal friend and working with you on Comic Book Galaxy was one of my great joys. Thanks for your continued friendship, and good luck with everything.

Monday, January 05, 2004

Here's To Theft! -- Go check out AK's hilarious take on DK2.

Tally Me Banana -- Christopher Butcher's thanks to me and Dirk Deppey in his column this week spurred me to take a look at my own site statistics and see who I have to thank for the ever-increasing number of visitors to the ADD Blog.

No surprise at all that I get most of my hits from Dirk Deppey. His Journalista! is the best source of comics news and information anywhere on the planet. Honestly, if you've got Journalista! bookmarked, you're set. Everything important about comics (and the funny unimportant stuff, to boot) will get to your attention thanks to Dirk's diligent observance. He's been very kind to link to this blog (and its predecessor) many times over the course of its history. Thanks, Dirk.

Also worth noting are the links I get from John Jakala, Kevin Melrose and Sean Collins. They're just below Dirk not only in terms of the hits they send my way, but in terms of the amount of information and entertainment they provide on a daily basis. Anyone who disparages the comics blogosphere either isn't reading these blogs or is a goddamn idiot. Possibly both.

And speaking of Collins, check out his interview with cartoonist Phoebe Gloeckner. She's one of the most vital and significant comics creators of our time, and big kudos to Sean for making sure this interview made it into the public's hands despite the best effort of backwater imbeciles who put its original planned venue out of business.

Essential Reading -- Although it's mainly about comics that shipped over the past two weeks, Christopher Butcher's new Previews Review column also serves as a devastatingly insightful perspective on the past year in comics. His comments on The Comics Journal, Geoff Johns, Alan Moore, Astro City, and much more, are absolutely dead-on accurate. Please take the time to read this lengthy installment, and really seriously consider what he says. Butcher is one of the few people worth listening to on a regular basis, and this week he manages to turn that knob up to 11.

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