Friday, February 27, 2015

To boldly go. . . .

I was at work this morning when I heard about Leonard Nimoy's passing.
To say it came as a shock would be an understatement. I was aware that he had been in the hospital last week, but the media coverage suggested it was a minor blip, that he was going to be fine.
Now he's gone.
I sincerely hope that his loved ones take some measure of comfort from the enormous outpouring of sympathy and well wishes from the public, and that those same good wishes buoy and support Mr. Nimoy's spirit as he starts his next great adventure.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Comics on the Screen

The Oscars were on last night. I didn't watch them.  I don't really watch much of anything anymore. That's one of the reasons I don't have a television.
The other is the expense. If I had a television I'd want cable which would cost way too much for what you get.  It's cheaper and more practical just to have the Internet and stream the few programs I want to watch when I want to watch them.
To be honest, there's not much on the boob tube these days that I want to watch.  And what I do watch would probably surprise people.
Working in a comic shop, most people assume I'm a big fan of comic related television programming. That's actually not true.
I can't stand The Walking Dead with its endless misery.  I've only watched a couple of episodes of Flash and Arrow.  They just don't interest me.  Arrow is basically a Batman show without using Batman and Flash just didn't ring my bell.
I gave Agents of SHIELD a shot in the first season but it was too damn boring. The second season was better because they hit the ground running, but I'm still not enamored of the show.
That said, I love Agent Carter and usually enjoy Gotham
The fact that I'm watching a Batman-related show at all comes as a shock to many of my friends, as I have a deep and powerful loathing of the Batman character.  And, in all honesty, if the show runners decided to go completely AU with Gotham and kill of young Bruce Wayne, I would probably enjoy it even more.  That said, the main reason I watch is for the Penguin and Fish Mooney bits.
I've watched a few episodes of Constantine, but find Matt Ryan's portrayal of the title character too quick and light for my tastes. 
Upcoming comic-related shows aren't exactly winding their way into my heart, either.
The news that Fox has greenlit a Lucifer pilot, inspired by the biblical character from DC's Sandman series, has left a bad taste in my mouth.  They've taken one of the most interesting concepts and are basically turning it into a stupid police procedural.
Apparently, the Dreadstar comic series may be making its way to the small screen, as well, but I'll believe that when I see it.  On the one hand, it's such a little known property it could come in with very little public bias, but, on the other hand, people might look at it and think it's just a Star Wars ripoff.
No, there's not a lot of comic-related television love in my house.
This is probably a good thing.
I love comics, the stories and characters, the fact that they are modern morality tales.  When they're done right, we can get some truly great shows.
But when they're done wrong? Well, we get stuff like Birds of Prey.
And, trust me, no one needs to be exposed to something like that.

Monday, February 16, 2015

Satan and the Awful Cold

Hello, gentle readers.
Forgive my bluntness this afternoon, but I feel like bloody hell.
I have a cold.  I have had this cold for the last few days and every day is a horrible new, nasal experience. 
I've had this cold so long that I have now started to refer to it as The Awful Cold, to differentiate it from the run-of-the-mill colds that we all get.
It started as a cough. An annoying tickle in the back of the throat.  This began at work, and I thought it was just dust-related.
But over the next day or so the cough evolved into a croup, which is a kind of wet, mucus-filled cough. 
I started drinking orange juice, which is normally enough to put me back on track.  Alas, that did not work this time.
On the third day, it reached my nose.  I became congested, at first, and then a victim to frequent nasal thaws, where it seemed that the entire contents of my head wanted to pour either out of my nose or down my throat.
Apologies, ladies and gentlemen, if that's a bit graphic.
At the moment, the Awful Cold seems to have set up permanent residence in my nose.  I am sitting on my couch, surrounded by crumpled tissues, sipping hot water with lemon and wondering if a pact with Satan will be the only way to free myself of this blasted illness.
The fact that I've got a draft from my fireplace chilling my ankles probably isn't helping me recover any, but I've been spending far too much time in bed.  I should probably burn the sheets, as by now they must be impregnated with the Awful Cold's awful offspring.
I haven't missed work yet, which I'm thinking has not endeared me to any of my coworkers. Who wants to work around someone who spends most of the day sniffling, crouping and occasionally succumbing to bouts of violent sneezes?  I'm a walking bio-hazard zone.
I will say that I am using the anti-bacterial soap at the store a lot.  And I'm trying not to breathe on anyone when I'm assisting them with purchases.
So far, my misery is restricted to myself.
The Awful Cold seems to love only me.
Oh joy.
I'm in a relationship and its with an illness.
Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go and refresh this cup of lemon water and I think I shall retreat upstairs.
Hopefully, the Awful Cold will succumb to boredom and move on to someone else.
Either that, or I'm going to have to buy a bunch of black candles and sacrifice a black cock to the Powers of Darkness.
What next?
Hopefully, better health.

Thursday, February 12, 2015


It was just another day,
until I realized the date,
and then all my good-cheer

It was just another day,
until I remembered,
and grief crept in,
on padded feet.

It was just another day,
so long ago,
when I got the news,
and then it was the worst day.

Time passes,
healing the heart,
blunting the biting edge of loss,
with a string of other days.

God willing,
tomorrow will be
just another day,
forgettable and unshaken.

Monday, February 2, 2015


Today, gentle readers, I was working on a poem.
It was called The Ballad of Brimstone Jenny.
An awesome title, I know.
Sadly, the poem has refused to gel. 
In short, I have failed.
Failure, I think, is something people don't talk about enough. It's probably because we equate failure with shame.  The two states are interconnected in most people's brains. 
But failure is an important thing.  When we fail, we learn.  The lessons are usually unpleasant, but often necessary, and we usually don't have anyone to blame for our failures but ourselves.
Oh sure, sometimes circumstances can seem to conspire against us.  Sometimes, we have the most amazing bad luck.
But mostly, I think we fail because of a lack of preparation.
My failure today, I think, comes from the fact that I've only had a vague idea where I wanted to go with this poem and what sort of story I wanted it to tell.
Did I want Jenny to be sympathetic? Unsympathetic? Were her actions justified?  Unjustified?
Or, maybe, on a different level, I failed to write this particular poem because it was just too damned dark.  Perhaps, on some level, I just didn't want to write it.
Or, maybe it was something else.
* * * * *
I just took a minute to go back and reread this post.  I came very close to deleting it because I'm not happy with it.  I don't think I'm communicating my intent as clearly as I would like.
But I didn't.
If I had deleted it, would it have been a failure?
Since I'm continuing to write it, does that mean it's not a failure?
I think the former, rather than the later.
I haven't given up.
The same is true with The Ballad of Brimstone Jenny.  I'm not going to give up on it, but I am going to put it aside for a moment.
I failed on the initial attempt, but I'm not going to give up.
There's a story there I want to tell, I just have to find the right words and the right voice.
And so, ladies and gentlemen, failure teaches us to persevere.
We don't talk about failure enough.
Perhaps it's time we started.