July 9th, 2011

Peter G

That's News To Me

It was some time ago that I had to deal with my mom and my sister becoming nuts over the Nancy Grace show.  I couldn't stand her, I regarded her as a grandstanding exploitative opportunist who hindered police work more than she helped and may be responsible for the death of a kidnapped girl after she badgered the mother into suicide.  I swear to God, my mom once called me from Florida, saying their satellite dish had gone out, could I start recording the show and send her the discs?

One time, I was going to have to meet with my sister.  Pam, my Compaq 1247 powered by Puppy Linux, was in heavy use at the time.  Knowing how the discussion was going to go, in a fit of sarcasm, I coded up an app, the Nancy Grace Missing Toddler app.  My sister saw me activate it and asked, "What does that do?"

It goes off any time a child goes missing and Nancy Grace is going to talk about it on her show.

The app then signaled.  Later that night, my sister turned on Nancy Grace and saw a child had gone missing and that was the focus of the show, and asked me if there was a Windows version of the app.  Talking with the coders, they know I don't know how to do connections over the Internet, "so how exactly does it work?"

I said, Truth be told, it just goes off at random intervals.

I got +20 Internets and a Waha for that.

Because of what I focus on with the news, I have no clue who Casey Anthony is, just that she was fodder for Grace, which gave me a fair idea what she had done.  I studiously avoided the trial coverage.  All I know is she was acquitted and people are screaming about it.

So why am I writing about it now?

Kim Kardashian tweeted, "WHAT!!!!???!!!! CASEY ANTHONY FOUND NOT GUILTY!!!! I am speechless!!!"

Speechless?  Really?  Is it permanent?

If it is, it just proves every cloud has a silver lining.
Rat Celebrates

First Submissions

So, Valiant is attempting to restart itself, seeing that there is an opportunity to jump back into the comics market.

And they ain't the only ones.

The programming for the San Diego Comic Con has been announced.  I don't know when it is, as I'm not going, I just know it's not this weekend (Tanya Tate is supposed to be there.  She's currently here in the Chicago area for the Exxxotica adult entertainment expo this weekend).  On the Thursday of the con is this panel --

5:00-6:00 First Comics: The First of the Great Independents Is Back with a Fury!— Legendary ’80s independent publishing powerhouse First Comics is returning when the world needs it most, not unlike the promised return of King Arthur. And the assembled Round Table of extraordinary comics creators are here to tell you how they will once again be rocking your world with comics entertainment from the cutting edge. Panelists include Ken F. Levin (Wanted, The Boys, First Comics co-founder and director), Joe Staton and Nick Cuti (E-Man), Bill Willingham (Fables), Max Allan Collins (Road to Perdition), Brian Mullens (founder of DaQRi; QR director), Alex Wald (art director then and again), Susannah Carson (A Truth Universally Acknowledged; First Comics YA editor), and Daniel Merlin Goodbrey (The Tarquin Engine, The Last Sane Cowboy). Moderated by Larry Young (The Black Diamond; First Comics director of production). Room 23ABC

Holy shit and three thunders!  First Comics!  They, along with Eclipse, were the big indies until Marvel manipulated its schedule to kill them off.  Those of us from the boom remember great titles like Badger, Nexus, American Flagg!, Grimjack, Dreadstar, Jon Sable -- Freelance, and E-Man.  Great, great stuff.

They are probably going to be out of my league, as, with that line-up, they are clearly angling to become a mid-tier publisher like IDW and Dynamite.

Or are they?

I would like to point out the name Susannah Carson on there, and her title of YA editor.

Rose?  Bridge?  Dust off your resumes!

Hey.  Worst that will happen is they'll say no.

And Now, A Bunny With A Pancake On Its Head

Police in Strongsville, Ohio, are looking for a banana that attacked a gorilla.

Sorry.  I need a moment before I continue.

The Wireless Center has a mascot, some guy in a gorilla costume.

"I noticed a kid in the bushes. Then he just emerged, dressed up as a banana, and sprinted as fast as he could at our gorilla," said Brandon Parham, the manager. "The kid just speared our gorilla.  The kid was in mid-air, flying. He just looked like a Spartan from that movie '300,' except he was a banana.  After he got tackled, the gorilla just got back up and adjusted his head. He kept on waving his sign around."

I had a dream like that once.  Woke up in a straight jacket.

Parham added, "This is just bizarre. It's really not normal of the food chain. That's not really how this works. The gorilla should have won."  Police were unable to locate the banana and believe it was prank.

If you think I'm making this up (and, frankly, I wouldn't blame you in the least), here's the report complete with video footage.

On the one hand, I feel a lot better about myself.  On the other hand -- well, thank God my life is half over.
Peter G

The Downside Of Small Town Living

I've mentioned before that I have a few immutable rules of life.  These are things that are generalities but may as well be absolutes.  They include but are not limited to:

*  Everybody hates
*  You learn more about a man by his enemies than by his friends
*  You don't shake the devil's hand, then say you're only kidding
*  Abuse of power should come as no surprise

There's another that, because of where I live, doesn't pop up very often, so when it does, it's a shock.  And that rule is, nothing good can ever come from a white guy proudly flying a German flag.

I have literally just come back from the post office.  My town is actually quite nice.  I know lots of people complain about small towns, but I don't.  And, in fact, my area is actually pretty progressive when it comes to things.  For example, a white supremacist group decided to hold a rally in a neighboring town.  People from the surrounding area showed up to protest, outnumbering the idiots by at least three to one.  Police were more afraid that the protesters were going to start a fight than the dipshits.  My town doesn't hold pride weekends or anything, but if you are a good person and don't act like an idiot or do anything illegal, you can be whatever you are and you're left alone.  When I first came here, there were only a couple of black people here.  The number has grown considerably over the decades, and no one in town hyped.  They're just people.  As a result, it's kind of insulated.  You forget there's a dangerous side to racial relations, where there is still a war going on.  A few people who are members of the KKK, one of them a Grand Dragon, lives about thirty minutes away from me.  When Benjamin Smith of the misleadingly named World Church Of The Creator (now the Creativity Movement) went on his killing rampage in 1999, his path took him relatively close to my area.

I literally just got back from the post office.  I pull into the parking lot, and there's a guy with a late model car with one of those car flags in the door.  But instead of an American flag or a sports team flag, it's a German flag.

I have a nasty tendency to sometimes look at people and start examining, determining strengths, weaknesses, and level of threat.  The worst thing about that is it's never wrong -- if it kicks in, there's a reason.  White, mid to late twenties, brownish blond hair in a pony tail, angry vibe, black T-shirt, jeans, kind of wiry but clearly a scrapper.  From how he was sitting, I couldn't see any tats, and it's not like the German flag had 88 on it or anything like that, but if you go with the most rudimentary profile, he fits the bill.

I freely admit I could be reading too much into this, he could just be proud of his German heritage like I'm proud of my Polish heritage, maybe he's just having a bad day and he's actually a swell guy.  But I've got to stay sharp.  He's free to think what he wants.  But if he moves from thinking to action, if he tries anything, I have to be ready.

We ALL have to be ready.