Tuesday, August 19, 2008

I Suck.

I wish I knew something about motors and engines. Hunter opened a snow cone stand this summer in order to raise money to buy a gas powered motor bike. It's a tiny little yellow thing called a Street Bug, I think, and it looks like someone turned a lawnmower on it's side. But he loved it, wanted it, and even though I wasn't sure he should have it, we told him he could if he'd only earn the money to buy it. Problem solved? Nope! He promptly created a desirable product, set up a stand in front of the house, did his own signage, and earned $300 in a month. I couldn't be prouder.

And he rode that thing around the neighborhood like Peter Fonda. His friends were envious.

But then it stopped working. The motor, when idling, would suddenly choke out and make a grinding kind of a noise and quit. Transmission problem? I have no idea. But I've got to take the bike back to the dealer tomorrow and help mend it and Hunter's broken heart. I hope it can be fixed. He doesn't know it yet, but one of his fish is about to die too. This is a bad week to be having for a kid about to start the 4th grade in a few days.

This kid also needs glasses now, which we ordered today. He knows that anyone who calls him "Poindexter" or "Four Eyes" gets a sock in the mouth. Heh.

I pushed a young girl's car off the road today with Sharis. Traffic was horrible, and we were in a turn lane waiting for the light to change. When the car in front of us didn't move with the rest of the cars, we took notice of the driver, a very young mother (the infant was in the backseat), flustered by the situation. She tried to wave us around, but I was pulled up too close to her, and couldn't manage to get around her car.

Sharis got concerned and said, "We should see what's wrong and help her!"

I have to say, this thought didn't even occur to me, with traffic in the other three lanes congested and the temperature being 97 degrees. I mostly just wanted to get around her and go home. I was kind of ashamed of myself.

I put our minivan in Park with the Hazards and popped out into the street. Sharis was right behind me. Sharis introduced us, told her to put the car in neutral and steer through oncoming traffic towards the grassy area near Bank of America. Sharis acted like a traffic cop, with her arms out trying to hold back traffic while I pushed her Toyota to safety. Sharis saw a traffic accident a block ahead of us and ran to get a police officer while I zipped back to our minivan, with Hunter waiting inside, and drove it around the corner to the Bank, where we could see what further assistance we could provide for this family.

Apparently, she'd hoped the gas in her tank would go further than it did. She ran out of gas in the middle of traffic. "My husband is gonna beat me for this", she muttered, which alarmed Sharis and I. Her infant, who's name was Abby, was due at the doctor because she had a cold. We offered to give her a lift over to the doctor, which she accepted, and had a nice chat with her on the way over. It was kind of nice to be able to help someone like that, I have to say.

Sharis was very pleased, and told me many times how proud she was of me for helping, but I didn't like hearing it much. I wouldn't have done anything if she hadn't urged me to, and that is the kind of insight into oneself that isn't fun to realize. My wife...my angelic wife, will help anyone, anytime, without any thought about her own convenience or comfort. I want to be more like her.

And this little journal entry is the most appropriate thing yet written on "No Superheroes to See Here."


Friday, August 8, 2008

The Agony and the Ecstasy

Click on this box!
The plague has us! Our house is quarantined, and we're not having as much fun as usual. It's very sad. We all have the flu. Or maybe they're just severe colds, but whatever, I feel horrible. Sharis is in bed under the covers, occasionally waking to ask for a Tootsie roll. Hunter is grouchy. He's in his room putting little Lego motors on little Lego vehicles and grumbling. It's unpleasant, but it's what happens when convention season reaches it's crescendo. We end up meeting and touching so many people's hands (shiver!) that we invariably come home ill.

Last week was San Diego Comic Con. Sharis and I attended, Hunter went to stay with his grandmother, where he was treated to a nice fishing trip on a boat. He had peace and quiet. We had insanity, but a good kind of insanity. Here are some links and images to see and enjoy.

First, my writer and I announced our new DC project, Flash: Rebirth! Here's the promotional art by me:
(guess I'm breaking the "no superheroes" rule here...)

That went over pretty well. Here's an interview and fan discussion:
And then the Wordballon podcast interview:
And here's a glimpse of Sharis and I, working, at SDCC. "The Sights and Smells of SDCC" indeed!

So it was mostly work for me, but Sharis managed to get out and meet some celebrities!

Here's Sharis meeting Tori Amos!

Here's Sharis at the Eisner Awards with Gerard Way and Mrs. Gerard Way from My Chemical Romance. (My photography skills rule)

Here's Sharis with Jane Weidlin from the Go-Go's!

She also got pics of and with Samuel L. Jackson, the guys from Reno 911 and Method Man, but cutting and pasting on these blogs is very annoying, so I'll quit.

A splendid time was had by all. Sadly, I lost the Eisner award for best Penciler/Inker to Pia Guerra, who managed to create the wonderful Y, The Last Man series which ended this year. She deserved it. But I'll get mine next year! I'll settle for the 3 WIZARD FAN AWARDS I received for my work in 2007 instead.

So there's where the past month went. I'll try to write more frequently again.