I wrote this last summer, but put it on hold for several months because of a health emergency in the family. Oddly, Americans seem to have difficulty comprehending systems thinking: how explicit and implicit rules govern our social interactions.
New Year’s Eve, 1999. The world is teetering on the brink of collapse. At least, that’s how I remember it. Something about Y2K. That night, perhaps tipsy on Belgian beer, and champagne chugged hastily from a paper cup (I was 26, and so, so classy), I made a New Year’s Resolution that I ended up keeping for exactly 10 years: to make a weekly webcomic.
From January 2000, until January 2010, I made 519 episodes of my comic Teaching Baby Paranoia (the title came from a single panel comic I did in college; something about parenting technology teaching children to fear that little blinking light next to their bed). It started as all comics created by 26 year old white guys do: autobiography. Eventually, as I discovered that I’m really not that interesting, it mutated into weird fiction. With footnotes. (The footnotes thing came from an old issue of The Red Herring, a humor magazine at McGill University that I was an editor of, in the ’90s. There was one issue where every joke and reference was meticulously annotated, which I thought was funny as hell. I added footnotes to Teaching Baby Paranoia as sort of a meta-humor commentary about authorial credibility. I don’t know… again, I was in my 20s.)
A couple of weeks ago, I decided to make a new episode (strip?). Honestly, I’ve been wrestling with the comic’s legacy a bit. I basically made a comic about lying with a straight face, which after the apocalyptic presidency of 2017-2021 feels weird.
Anyway, here you go. No footnotes this time. Maybe I’ve outgrown them, or something.
I recently created an infographic for work. It was an interesting experiment: how to cram a ton of information into a [relatively] small amount of space, while still making it aesthetically pleasing, and readable.
Plus, it was a chance to draw in a simple, two color style.
It’s been a while since I posted anything here. Here’s an excerpt from Oh, The Beating Drum! number 8. This one features lizardmen, funny hats, rain, houses on stilts, people complaining about things, anachronisms, and a reference to a classics professor I had in 1993. As always, the entirety can be read in the magazine of swords and sorcery Worlds Without Master.
Every once in a long while comes a comic so profound, it changes all the rules.
This is probably that comic. Though, as the author, I might not be an objective opinion on this matter. Actually, this is the first page of that comic. There are two pages in total. You should probably subscribe to the magazine to see the other page. And the fourteen other pages I’ve made for this series, so far.
A second issue of Worlds Without Master has been published, which means that a second episode of Oh, The Beating Drum! has been published! It’s like serendipity, except planned.
Here’s are the first two pages (of three), featuring Unnamed Swordswoman #1 and Unnamed Sorceress #1.
Remember how I used to do a weekly comic, for like, ten years and then stopped a few years ago? Well, I did another one, randomly.Continue reading “Teaching Baby Paranoia: Payola Dentata”