atomic_fungus (atomic_fungus) wrote,

#718: Brakes, part 3 of 3; miscellanious news; and other comments.

New calipers on the front of the van, new pads, and the brakes work properly because I was finally able to get all the air out of the system.

Well, most of it. There is still a little bit of softness that I can't seem to get out, but the brakes are working well within nominal limits, so F it.

Now I just have Sunday left in my week off, and I doubt I'm going to get much more done, damn it.

* * *

What do you call this? People minting their own coins and saying they're worth $10 each, and people are bartering them here and there across the country.

As far as I know, federal law states that the government has a monopoly (and monopsony) on printing legal tender. These coins don't pretend to be government issue currency, so it's not "counterfeit" money; but as far as I know it's still not legal to use anything other than government-issue legal tender as "money".

These people are doing their thing based on the notion that it is perfectly legal to use anything as "money" as long as it's not counterfeit US currency. But I don't know, and I expect that the feds do know, so I'm prepared to give them the benefit of the doubt in this case.

Travolta kisses Kirk Douglas on the lips. Travolta is lucky Kirk Douglas was in public. Otherwise Douglas would probably have broken his jaw. You think Kirk Douglas is just some old guy, but in his younger days he could kick ass when he needed to.

Meanwhile, Travolta=f4g lolz

Clinton News Network only wanted "happy" questions for Hillary. Surprise coefficient: 0.000...0

The girl wanted to ask a question about the Yucca Mountain nuclear waste spent nuclear fuel storage facility. "Despite scientific evidence that it is a vulnerable site,..." went her question. "Scientific evidence," I suspect, which is approximately as scientific as "global warming=man-made=apocalypse".

(As we all know, I support recycling spent nuclear fuel. I think Yucca Mountain is a fantastic waste of money because if we had any sense at all we'd just process the stuff, remove the elements which poison the chain reaction, and re-use the stuff until every shred of U-235 had been consumed.)

This is not racism. This is how the law works.

When you are committing a felony, any death related to the felony which occurs during the commission of that felony is your fault, and it doesn't matter whether you are white, black, blue, green, or polka-dotted.

In this case, three black men break into a guy's house. The guy shoots two of them dead. The third robber is charged with murder. Civil rights groups swing into action protesting the "racism" of this.

Of course, part of the reason this is "racist" is because the white guy defended himself with a gun. No "civil rights" group which protests this kind of thing is for the Second Amendment; Jesse Jackson--the exemplar of the type--is rabidly anti-gun. (For, that is, you and me. Not for his bodyguards. He wants them to have guns, of course.)

If the three black men had beaten the guy to death and raped and killed his wife and then spray-painted "DIE WHITE MOTHERFUCKIN CRACKERS" on the walls of the house, that wouldn't be racism.

A white guy shoots two robbers dead, the third one is charged with murder; that's racism.

I saw, by the way, that there was a rally protesting the treatment of the "Jena 6" the other day, calling for more "hate crimes" legislation. WTF, the "Jena 6" beat the living shit out of some white people, continuing to beat one kid after he was out cold--who committed the hate crime?

Here is an interesting article about Hollywood Communists.

Evidence that the Big Bang evidence may be wrong. If true, cosmologists will have to go back to the drawing board.

The cosmologists are already rejecting it out of hand, though.

* * *

It's the Saturday before Thanksgiving. Already. Where did the year go? WTF, it seems like July was last week.

* * *

There is something incredibly refreshing about an ice-cold can of Vault, particularly the first swig from it. I don't know what it is. But I find myself cracking open a can, taking a big drink from it, and then setting it down with a "Puu-haa!" like people in anime do when they're slugging down a cold one.

* * *

When I really think about it, I realize that Charles Schultz really heavily influenced my comic art.

I don't mean that my characters look like Peanuts; but Schultz's work really had a great impact on things like timing in comic strips, and there are certain types of jokes which I find myself using much more often than others.


Charlie Brown is standing there with a bag of candy, one hand in it, his cheeks bulged as he chews.

Panel 1:
Linus asks, "Why are you eating so much candy, Charlie Brown?"
Charlie Brown replies, "I'M EATING BECAUSE I'M FRUSTRATED, THAT'S WHY!" --and it comes off just that way, even though Schultz used all-caps; he used larger letters in this case. Posture, expression, lettering, all combine to show the reader how Charlie Brown is reacting to Linus' innocuous question.

Panel 2:
"You'd be frustrated, too, if your entire baseball team had just quit on you!"
"Yes, perhaps you're right," Linus agrees.

Panel 3:
"BUT I WOULDN'T BE SO CRABBY ABOUT IT!" Linus, alone in the panel, says.

I don't know how long it's been since I last read that strip--and my recollection may be imperfect--but to me it's one of the best examples of how good Schultz was at drawing comic strips. It's funny--and more than once in the strip; it continues a story started in an earlier strip; it gives the reader enough information about the situation without going overboard on exposition or requiring a text box to explain what's going on; and we always understand how the characters feel and why they feel that way.

It's a lot of information to cram into one little comic strip. Schultz always made it look effortless.

So when I look at my own work--from the stick-figure things I drew in school to the manga-esque stuff I draw these days--I find myself wondering how much of my style is me and how much comes from having read Peanuts from the time that I could read.

I mean, I grew up reading Peanuts; we had literal dozens of the books of collected strips laying around here as long as I can remember. (I've still got 'em.) One of my friends showed me--in like 1978--that it's possible for anyone to draw a comic strip, and so I started drawing the simple stuff that I could draw.

It's impossible for me to look at my early work and say, "Yes, here you can see the Schultz influence" mainly because the artwork is crappy and the jokes are amazingly juvenile; I cringe when I look at it. (And I cringe at the idea of anyone else seeing it, at least while I'm still breathing.) So I guess we'll never know how much of my style I owe to Schultz.

What a freakin' tragedy.

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