(no subject)

Been a while since I posted. Hopefully I'll get a chance to post more soon, but for the moment:

Someone tried to call me today, and then hung up before getting much of anything out. I don't know who it was, but if you're reading this, call me back, please? I have a tendancy to fret over things like this.
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    worried worried

.hack//EPILOGUES: In the case of Misono Mariko

And, finally, a section of a fanfic work in progress I'm still grappling with. Seeing the talented camwyn's stories in progress has given me a bit of confidence that my stories won't be totally ruined by posting them while still half-finished. (Not that I yet aspire to be as skilled as her, but I'll take what I can get.) Warnings: fanfic, non-uber popular series.

[The server is currently down. We sincerely apologize for the inconvenience. If the problem persists, please try connecting to another server, or contact CyberConnect's twenty-four hour technical help line. Regular status updates on technical issues are posted to The World's web site at...]Collapse )
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    creative creative

Name That Tune

Second of three posts for today, and possibly the lightest and fluffiest. (If you don't care for more serious topics, skip my first one, below.) Warning: memeage, music.

You know the drill by now. The first 20 non-instrumentals from a random playlist I made in iTunes. Brief snippet of lyrics from each. Name the tunes, and win absolutely nothing. Void where prohibited.Collapse )
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    That's for you to find out, isn't it?
Badtz (Door)


The first of three posts today from me, and the heaviest (relatively). Warning: discussions of torture and politics.

"And as a result, there are no longer torture chambers or rape rooms or mass graves in Iraq." -- George W. Bush, 4/30/04.

I'm sure that by now just about all of you know how untrue this is. There's a very good, thoughtful overview of the topic at the New Yorker, which I recommend everyone read.

A quote from Rumsfeld: "I think that -- I'm not a lawyer. My impression is that what has been charged thus far is abuse, which I believe technically is different from torture. I don't know if it is correct to say what you just said, that torture has taken place, or that there's been a conviction for torture. And therefore I'm not going to address the torture word."

So. It wasn't 'torture.' And Bill Clinton did not have 'sex' with that woman. Honestly, if this doesn't get as wide coverage as Clinton's gaffe there, I'll be quite disappointed. (Not surprised, just disappointed.) Going into legalistic technicalities over whether it was 'torture' or 'abuse' or 'bad manners' or whatever isn't going to change the facts of what happened... or how it looks in the eyes of the world.

Frankly... I think this is a huge turning point. The Bush administration has been able to give itself a paper-thin veneer of credibility by saying 'no matter how many civilians we're bombing to death, no matter how many of our soldiers are dying, at least things are better off than they were under Hussein!' But now, fewer and fewer people are going to believe that. They're going to look at the American occupation force and see a beast that turns ordinary people, presumably quite decent and average folks, into cheerful, smiling torturers who take home movies as souvenirs.

And this isn't a problem that can be solved just by disciplining a few grunts and leaving it there. There's evidence surfacing that knowledge of this, at least, went all the way up the chain of command. Quite frankly, I don't think that anything short of a new administration and a complete rebuilding of the Armed Forces from the ground up would restore any trust in the US worldwide, and possibly not even that. From now on, if I'm right, nobody's going to buy that the US is going into any war for humanitarian purposes. Not while the image of people laughing and joking around as they torment and humiliate human beings is anywhere in memory at all.

And, quite frankly, I think they'd be right not to buy it at all.
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    cynical dark

I'm Back!

Yes, my DSL is now fully functional again. The final problem was very simple -- instead of just using my bare user name, or username.ppp, as I vaguely recalled I should, it turned out I needed to log in as username.dsl . Simple as that.

Now to indulge in massive net sufing gluttony, and consider Comcast. :-)

(And feed Mickey and Samantha in a bit. Mickey's meowing quite a bit, which is normal, but what the hey.)

I did miss out on going to the comic shop, both to have access to technical help before it closed if I needed to, and to sign up (on a whim) for the Worlds of Warcraft beta. Probably won't get in, and I'm not huge on MMORPGs anyway, but what the heck -- it grabbed my imagination momentarily. Time enough for comics eventually.

In any case. Glad to be back!
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    pleased pleased

(no subject)

I'm home. Had a fun week and a half or so out in California, seeing family, having Christmas/New Year's/Dad's Birthday parties, and got to see a great amount of my family (including my mom, who lives on the east coast, and my paternal grandparents, who just moved from southern California to northern and who I hadn't seen in years). Gave some good Christmas presents, and got some neat ones in return. (Though I think most of you reading this will think me mad for being vaguely disappointed at recieving a Tivo and lifetime subscription. Still, you'll probably agree that it can't beat the huge two-volume complete Far Side collection.)

And now I'm back. Ran into highdancer, ohimesamamama, their Katlet, and cadhla at the Source over the weekend. (To the latter, I apologize for the unprovoked skritching -- it's like a reflex for me.) They did quite well at taking care of the cats in the face of adversity -- Mickey and Samantha are a little quirky at the best of times, and it seems strangers bring out the worst in them. Samantha thinks she's a lot stealthier than she is, and Mickey... well, he chews on and claws me, and he likes me. (Though that's mostly friendly wrestling, or trying to secure himself in my lap.) For someone he doesn't know... Well, that these stalwarts kept on braving him enough to keep both cats well-fed and healthy is quite admirable. They must be rewarded.

Anyway, home, healthy, largely pleased, and getting back into the swing of things. (And vaguely tired, due to the fact that Mickey's getting much better at pushing open my bedroom door. Must get that latch fixed.) Taken the comic down for the moment due to disk quota issues, but I'll try to get some new pages built for it. Hope you've all been well!
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    tired tired

24 Hours: a Retrospective

Well, in response to some encouragement I've recieved (though I think ohimesamamama and especially my dear twin condotierre may be just a teensy bit biased), I've decided to put my 24-hour comic on line for all to cringe at. I haven't yet made web pages for them, but in the interim, you can go straight to the image files. The first is at The others are comic2.jpg, comic3.jpg, and so on up to comic24.jpg. Warning: those of you with actual art training or experience may want to keep something on hand in case of eyeball bleeding.

Some thoughts ahead -- to be read after you've formed your own opinion.Collapse )
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    thoughtful thoughtful

(no subject)


I'm done.

I almost hit a wall a couple of hours ago, though. I had just finished up page 22 and was inking the panel borders... when my pens stopped working.

I'd bought a couple of Micron fine-tip pens yesterday at Wet Paint, on the grounds that learning how to use the standard dipping pens, with the nibs and inkwells and all, would be rather more than I could deal with at this point. They'd been working okay, though I think I may have either slightly damaged or drained the .5 pen when trying to color in a black nightgown in a big shot on page 4. (I almost immediately had the character change into lighter-colored clothes.) Still, the .2 pen was working decently up until then. I think either I'd used up all the ink, or I'd mashed the tips too hard so they were jamming up somehow.

After a brief attempt to clean them, I decided to switch over to a ballpoint pen. I'd heard they give much poorer-quality lines, but I didn't exactly have time to run down to Wet Paint again before 5:00.

My favorite ballpoint inked about three panel borders and then gave up the ghost. I was pretty sure there was still ink in there -- it's transparent, and I could see it -- but either that was just residue clinging to the cartridge walls, or this, too had jammed.

A desperate scavenge of the apartment ensued. I found a pen which had come with a 'How to Draw Manga' set, but it was beyond me -- apparently it was a dip pen with a standard pen body and a completely sealed small cylinder of ink inside. (I must look up how to use this someday.) I did, however, find a fairly poor-quality ballpoint somewhere, and proceeded to finish with it. Which is why the lines on the last few pages look even scratchier than usual.

Looking at the comic... Well, it's bad, no doubt about it. Characters don't look the same from one panel to the next, though they retain a certain simplicity. I don't think I got across everything I wanted to. And there were lots of 'cheats' -- splash pages, big panels, and some panels of random objects with mysterious-overseer-type dialogue over them. I think that works in context, but still.

But -- I got it done. Even with the oversleeping and the rebellion of my writing instruments.

And that's pretty okay.
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    content content

(no subject)

Three hours left. And I've actually just made it through page 19. So... five more to go, if I'm going to finish it properly.

Can I do it? Well... I don't know. I'm certainly better off than I was predicting when I woke up. I'm willing to try, though I've only gotten this far by sharply reducing the panel count on several previous pages. (The big splash on page 16 has to be my most blatant case of hurrying.) Don't know yet whether, if I fall short, I'll go for the Gaiman Variation (end at whatever page I'm on at 5 PM) or the Eastman Variation (keep on going until I've got 24 pages, no matter how long it takes). Depends on how close I am to being done, I think. (Neil Gaiman actually only ended up with 13 pages in his 24-hour comic, though the story and art are both far better than mine.)

Anyway. Probably last update until the end...