As has become something of a tradition at this site, I am starting today's post with apologies to all of you Faithful Readers out there for the lack of entries here lately.
I have often made this apology to all of you out there before. No doubt you wonder, "What major events are going on that prevent this goofball from just doing a few scribbles and writing a few random blatherings each day?" An excellent question! Here are a few a the diversions that have kept me away from you for so long, as well as a few other points of interest:
• Perfect Wife and I began our now-annual tradition of working part time at a local outdoor concert venue. The money is laughable, but we get to enjoy the Summer nights and get to experience the shows for free. At least that's the theory. The reality is somewhat different.
Last year, we did parking detail, as well as general maintenance and security. This year, we decided to "upgrade" to the lofty position of USHER. Our job is to stand at attention, and guide patrons to their assigned seats. Sounds simple, right? Well, maybe for our high school co-workers, but PW and I are completely confused by the venue's convoluted seat numbering. Several times, we led patrons on a happy traipse through the aisles searching for their seats, all the while quoting the immortal excuse of the truly incompetent, "Sorry, I'm new here". I'm sure that we'll figure it out by the end of the season. Well, at least PW will, and can cover for me.
The other down side to the gig is that standing for hours on hard concrete is really hard on the ol' back, even when I'm wearing my all- black Chuck-T's. It sounds like I'm whining (and I am, I suppose), but my back is KILLING me! We're talking "Now-I-know-why-old people-complain-so-much", pain. Is this Karma paying me back for all the years I lied to my Mother about back trouble to avoid snow-shovel duty? I plan to invest in a pair of Dr. Scholl® inserts, and hopefully that will mitigate the problem. A bonus will be that I can proudly announce to one and all that I am indeed "gellin.'"
• On the Freelance Cartoonist front, I did not get a big book illustration job I was being considered for. I did a bunch of samples gratis, and the editors said they really liked them, but they wanted someone with a "name". I always tell aspiring cartoonists to NEVER do any work on "spec", and yet I failed to follow my own advice some twenty plus years into my "career". So I repeat this advice to all aspiring cartoonists out there: NEVER DO WORK FOR FREE!!!
• On a tragic note, the birdhouse that sits on a pole in our yard suffered a late-night home invasion by a pack of raccoons. They trashed the joint, busting up the house and knocking it off it's base. We fear the bird family residing there suffered an unpleasant fate, but perhaps they escaped. Pretty to think so.
Happily PW's Perfect Dad is a whiz with tools, and was able to perform an "EXTREME MAKEOVER: BIRDHOUSE EDITION", restoring the house to its former glory. A new bird couple has already moved in, and we will keep an eye out for the raccoons.
• In addition to raccoons, coyotes have been making appearances in our yard. Unlike their Warner Bros. cartoon counterpart, these critters do not delight us as they run about building elaborate traps they purchased from the ACME® company. Mostly, they lurk about looking creepy, and cause Rocco the Wonder Dog much distress.
• Speaking of Rocco, after a long, exhaustive research period, we have finally compiled a list of the foods Rocco will not eat. To no one's surprise, the list is rather short. In fact, it is non-existent. Rocco will eat anything, including vegetables, peanuts, Tootsie Rolls®, sugary breakfast cereals, and many other things both edible and inedible that he should not have, and that you would presume he'd steer away from. I know you are thinking, "You shouldn't be feeding him that stuff!", and you're right. We try not to. Rocco, however, has really nailed his "I-am-starving-to-death-and-these-hogs-are-stuffing-their-faces" look, all the while making eye contact at you with his sad brown eyes. It is difficult to resist.
• Finally, for those of you out there that are parents and are worried your kids may stumble across this page and find some objectionable material, not to worry! This blog has been rated "PG" by a goofy website that rates blogs for content for some reason. I could have earned a wholesome "G" rating, but one of my posts had the word "crap" in it. Oh, no! I said "crap" again! There! I said "crap" again! Now I probably have a "XXX" rating!