Friday, January 30, 2009

COMBINED DELIVERY

Another delayed day similar to Wed, but with not as much late freight going out. This time around, since Rory had a double, I went out with both our stuff so he could shuttle and go on his night route. I decided to forego his usual methods and park on my block as it's hard to get a spot later in the day. I figured do my block first, then his main building, then his block, and then whatever's left over. Unfortunately, that plan was thwarted by overly slow elevators. My building had a slight delay, and the other building only had one elevator per bank running. I waited for one for 10 mins. As such, I needed to call for help for my last 3 stops while I hit the other street. It was later I learned they cancelled service for today so there was no need. D'oh!

Rory came by and took some of my stops, I did a couple then went on break. I decided to pay a visit to Jim Hanley's finally; just your average comic shop, nothing special about it. I hit the nearby Subway for some food then banged out the rest of my freight.

The rest of my day was spent napping, watching the usual TV shows, and getting my books ready for Index #4. I wanna get them all done this weekend as they're due right after Comiccon and I won't be able to carry them with me to the show to work.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

LAB (UPDATE)

Chinese New Year and bad weather have played havoc on our freight this week. The Chinese aren't shipping, we had a plane go down in Texas, and the snow this week made their arrivals late. As such, I ended up not going out the last three days, mostly due to my saying I can't work all that late, especially yesterday. Today was the first day I actually got sent home early, but I was able to secure an extra half hour doing DG stuff.

But lest we forget the best part of today; the lovely MTA. I missed my regular train, but would've caught my backup. They waited till almost 5 to come down and tell people that there's a disruption in service and no trains to 36th. They gave us a ticket so we could get a free bus ride, but instead of waiting I just went to the next station to catch the N. Probably shoulda took the bus, but eh. Buses around here don't run much better than the trains! So, yeah, I ended up 9 minutes late to work. Bastards. Earn your goddamn fare increases!

Today's part of class was the lab section, where we actually get to use a computer instead of just listening to people drone on. Basically, we're making a portfolio website to host all the projects we'll be doing. A lot of what we'll do here I can find a use for...once I find someone who has Photoshop and Dream Weaver that they'll let me borrow long enough to upload into my computers.

This first class was basically setting up the site and learning how to swap out text and upload our pictures onto it. We had to write an artist's statement for the main page, describing our experience and what kind of work we'll be doing and so forth. I'm happy to say that most of this class should be a cake walk for me, because even though we're using dreaded Macs, at lot of the stuff is stuff I know so far. So, we'll see what becomes of it.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

FOREWORD AND FORWARD

Gary had come through with the foreword. We were a little worried when he never sent any indication if he'd do it or not, but in response to my inquiry about it I got the foreword instead. Not only that, but several revisions on top of that as he kept finding new things to fix. Now, all we need is to get the cover and this book will be very close to completion.

Monday, January 26, 2009

BACK TO SCHOOL

Ahhh, the first day of school. To say I was less than thrilled is a veritable understatement. Of course, the only classes I could get leave me with a 3 hour space between work and class on Monday and 6 hours on Thursday. Mondays mean I don't have enough time to go home and come back, so I worked out a plan to go get some Subway for lunch at the nearby restaurant and bring the laptop to do some work in the meantime. I'll say this much, at least this Subway is only a few cents more expensive than the one at home. The one by my route and station price gouges.

Today, I also went to buy the text book and a USB drive for class. However, that little jaunt ended up being a bit screwy as the map I checked out for a nearby Radio Shack led me in the wrong direction. It actually eneded up being right across the street from the school, next to the recommended book store for the text book. Ah well, at least I got some excercise, worked off some calories, and saw some neat buildings I'll have to go back and re-reference later.

The class was just an introduction to the types of media out there. I kinda spaced out and just worked on a script on the laptop while they talked. I didn't regard anything as too important to listen to right now. Unfortunately, I couldn't get on the net because I need a Hunter password to do so, which is apparently the same as my E-Mail access and yet none of my normal passwords seem to work. I'll have to make time to go to the Student Help desk or some shit to get it reset.

Basically this first week is to work out all the kinks and make my school experience as painless as possible. Of course, I'd rather NOT go but then I'd get too much shit and it'd be a big hassle.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

DIDN'T QUITE MAKE IT...

The goal this past week was to get a ton of work done before I got stuck going back to school as of tomorrow. I wanted to get the sites back up, do a year's worth of stories, and my Index work. Unfortunately, things kept popping up that prevented that. Had to address them and it put me behind on everything else. Ah well. Just gonna hafta find the ambition and energy to do them between everything as I go.

I had planned a different article than what I ended up sending to Estella. For Valentine's day, I thought I'd cover a good number of comic romances. When the research turned out to be more time consuming than I figured, I thought I'd then try more recent romances. Ultimately, I decided to just do an expose` on all the Obama comics that've come out. Especially considering all the hype surrounding the Spider-Man special comic. Aside from two Marvel appearances this month, there've been two biography comics and a Savage Dragon issue last year. I wonder how many comics I'd score if I announced I was a fan when I make my bid for president?

I also didn't get as much sleep as I hoped. Being off gave Liz carte blanche to text me most of the night every night. On the one hand, I like talking to her often. On the other, I wanted to sleep! Too bad I couldn't do both at once...

Saturday, January 24, 2009

PARTY TIME

Today was the CAG Mixer in Fairfield. Of course, I ended up leaving a bit later than planned due to the stupid little delays that always pop up whenever I leave my house. That wasn't helped by the fact I tried to give my van a quick wipe-down with pops' auto cleaning gloves only to discover he never completely finished getting off whatever he used last leaving me with white swirls and streaks all over the parts I wiped. I got it off mostly with some wet papertowels after, but yeesh, what a mess. I'm gonna hafta hit a carwash sooner than later.

Got gas and headed downtown to meet Lindsay. She couldn't go because of personal stuff, but gave me something for Sue. Next stop was Manhattan to get Rick, and then to the Bronx for Alex and his wife. The drive wasn't too bad, some slow spots but otherwise not much traffic.

We got there half an hour later than I wanted, but meh. The room we had was small but we had a fairly decent spread of food offerings. I pigged out on sandwich wraps and Dr. Pepper. Tried one of my brownies finally only to learn they sucked ass. Dunno what happened to this batch, but not my usual quality. They also did a Yankee swap of gifts, which seemed overly complicated and retarded. My head hurt trying to follow it. We were a little disappointed when Liz got lost, frustrated, and opted to just go home. But, it was pretty fun. A nice gathering.

Z-Man talked to me about my Hell's Blood script as he had gotten to read it. He told me that me and Liam managed to do a pretty similar story. Not so much in the action scenes as he hadn't done them yet by that point, wanting Hector's approval on every move he makes, but in the stuff surrounding the story. We also had some similar dialogue although mine was with a bit more dark humor and his was played straight. I find that funny. I know I've had situations where I've done the same things as professionals I've never met or vice versa, but to have a colleague I actually know in that situation, that's just funny as all hell. Based on the feedback I'm getting from him and from some things Hector's said, I have a feeling me and Liam are gonna end up co-writers with a mish-mash of our scripts being used; my action, his story. Hector's waiting on his third script for a decision, naturally.

Around 10-ish we hit the road for home. Getting to Alex was no problem. Getting Rick back was another matter as the damn GPS directed me towards the Triboro...'scuse me, RFK Bridge instead of the Cross Bronx like I wanted. And then I ended up missing the exit for the FDR 'cause it was a tiny little shit that pops up at the end of the bridge so if you dunno it's there, you won't see it till you pass. But, the GPS helped this time as it took us to the Midtown tunnel. Dropped him off and took the Battery back home. I had just missed a spot on my block, but found one in the middle of the next one over. Lucky there.

Friday, January 23, 2009

PREP

Decided to get the van ready for tomorrow by filling up the tires and washing it off some. Unfortunately, the tires turned out to be more of a project than I thought. Especially trying to get the damn compressors to work. I also didn't get to work in the driveway like I hoped since the ONE time I need it those morons were parked in there for days. I was able to get a spot out front, but that still meant trying to work out in the wet street. Also didn't get time to clean it any, so we'll see what happens tomorrow. If it wasn't for all that woulda been a good day to take the decorations down. Nice, 40 degrees and no wind. Ah well. One day I'll be able to do it.

For dinner decided to go get us some food from the new burger joint that opened up on 86th, Five Guys. The place was kinda like Players in Texas; made to order, although at least Players has meals. This joint you get a burger and fries separate no matter what. They do give you a ton of fries, though, and each burger comes with a dual patty. It wasn't bad, but pricey as hell. The 'rents loved it so I'm sure we'll be getting from there often in the future.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

BLOCKED LINES OF COMMUNICATION

We've been having trouble with the Nebraska branch now. They feel we neglect them in the grand scheme of things. The fact is, that's only an illusion caused by the fact that NY, MA and CT are within driving distances of each other so we can all do more things together. The NE branch is pretty much isolated. As an olive branch, a few of the leaders offered to sit in on one of their meetings should they be able to get Skype up and running in their meeting place. Matt, their head, set about doing that and got it all set up. Me and Sue attended, but we had some audio problems. First, they couldn't hear us because the sound settings were off on the computer. Then, they all sat too far away from the mic for us to hear. We decided to call this a beta test and write it off as a failure. Hopefully, by next month's meeting Matt can have all the logistics worked out.

I also went over to D's today to get in some game time. I ended up being more busy than planned so I couldn't get over to his 'rents' on the weekends like I wanted to while he was laid up from his new knee surgery. But, he's walking fine and back home now, so we partook of some gaming there after a McDonald's lunch. I got to try Lego Indiana Jones, and it was hillarious as all hell. Definitely gotta get that. Also tried Guitar Hero World Tour. The drums are a lot harder than I thought they'd be, but the singing was pretty easy. No, I'm still tone deaf, but as long as you meet the right pitch you can mumble the words and still get 98%. It was pretty fun.

He also gave me my Xmas present finally. One was an awesome George Perez modeled Batman Black & White statue, what he deemed (and I mostly agree) the best of the series, and a Wolverine Bobble Head. Let me tell ya, so many people have threatened to get me that bobble head ever since it came out, and now I finally have it. I guess there's a kinda symmetry in the fact he's the one that ended up getting it for me. Wild.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

INDY AFTER PARTY

The final stages of the Indy After Party are in the works. This time around I decided to throw in for sponsorship and sent $50 while on our last Skype meeting. This year, we're putting all the logos of those who sponsor on the invite and Mark wanted mine for Atomic Media, despite I haven't created anything original in years. Well, I contacted Ben to see if he'd be available to do it, and when he was slow to respond I offered Estella the chance to take my spot. However, they too never responded and Mark needed a logo ASAP. So, I made the best one I could. Of course, it sucked and he took it upon himself to make a version of what I was going for. Not quite what I envisioned but good enough. Now, Ben still hasn't responded but Estella finally did...about 4 hours after I had to turn it in. I told them send me a logo anyway for next year just in case.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

HELL'S BLOOD

Hell's Blood is the creation of Hector, our New England coordinator. He and Keith've been working on it since I joined the group, and the first issue is just finally nearing completion. But, his writer, Scott, has gotten too busy to continue on so Hector sent a bunch of us character info and a plot for #2 with carte blanch to add whatever elements we felt need adding. The story wasn't overly complicated...basically was a big fight issue. He sent this stuff on Thursday, 2 days sooner than I was expecting, and then it just took me forever to get to writing it all down. I had it all worked out and plotted in my head, and only took me two days to write up.

As it was mostly action, I tried to balance it with some story elements. Since these aren't my characters and I dunno where the story goes beyond that paragraph, I'm sure I made some mistakes in either characterization or execution. But the fights, man, I loved the fights. Hector basically outlined some things he saw in his head, and I ran with those and extended them a bit. I even went so far as to use one of my swords to choreograph the sword fight. It was a lot of fun, and I'm very happy with how it came out. Hopefully, he is too.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

CLOSED CIRCUIT

Circuit City is going under. They've been having troubles the last few months, but looks like the final death knell came. Sure, this is old news but we just checked it out today, and their site is one big message addressing this fact. Ah well, their sales and their stock weren't always that great to begin with. Like the ghetto version of Best Buy.

Friday, January 16, 2009

LAST HURRAH

We were missing two flights, so my partner routes ended up light enough that Damien absorbed mine into theirs. That was a mistake, 'cause though they were light I had a full load. Anyways, I opted to go home early instead of shuttling when one of the trucks conked out on the highway. So, I offered to bring my truck out and help switch the packages over. Then there was a matter of tracking down the mechanic to check it out, or get it towed back in. Of course, I tried to do the right thing by setting out an emergency triangle on the road, but the heavy winter winds pushed it into traffic and it got obliterated. Yeesh.

Before I could escape, Damien had me go out to help someone. By the time I found a truck, was able to leave, and got there, his block neighbor was already helping and he only had one stop left that the guy coulda easily took as it was in the same building. If it wasn't for the fact I couldn't reach either manager on the phone to tell them I was having trouble sending messages on my pad, I woulda headed over to my route to help the guy doing Rory's as he called for help. But, even by that time, one of the shit guys'd be on the freight and it'd take me forever to get inside...assuming of course he uses the same methods I do to load the building. Ironically, the guy who was bitching the most about getting my stuff I never saw a help call from. Guess he did alright.

But now, I'm on VACATION! Sadly, it's a working vacation, but still; 6 less hours a day for a week that I need to spend at that headache of a job. Ya know, doing my route is the easiest part. Dealing with the station, that's the painful part. Hopefully, I can get everything I want to done in the next week before I'm stuck wasting my time at school.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

STILL CONSTRUCTING

Today's meeting was a little light on attendance, probably due in part to the snow. As expected, it was mostly dedicated to the upcoming Comiccon. Some final details to be hashed out and all. We also had press photos taken by one of our new members.

Lunch proved to be interesting again as they still hadn't finished fixing up the diner, so we were in the same corner as last time. Me, Bob and Alex ended up in the same booth chatting and eating. We even got Liz into the fun by my texting her. She was supposed to come to the meetng but decided against it. We all had fun, though, and hopefully next month the damn place is finished!

Friday, January 09, 2009

SAMPLER

Because we wanted Gary to write a foreword to Iconic, I had decided to take the sampler Keith made up for us the other meeting and add the scripts to them so he could get an idea of what we were doing. The idea was sound, but unfortunately I was working from old drafts of the scripts and semi-complete artwork. Basically I took each page, printed the corresponding dialogue on the back of the previou spage, and ran it like that. Of course, the story I wrote isn't even drawn yet so I just included the script pages with that. Hopefully it gets the point across.

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

PATIENT PATIENT

Today I had to go for a company physical. But let me first set the tone for the day.

It was raining, and I didn't just leave my house when I ended up stepping in a puddle in a spot that's never had a puddle before, splashing my show and soaking my sock for the day. Then I find out yet ANOTHER truck caught on fire in the warehouse, forcing them to use all the extinguishers and call the fire department to take care of it.

Okay, so I finished my route and then proceeded on to Madison to this ghetto medical center where the physicals were happening this round. I was waiting for over an hour before I got to finish filling out my paperwork. It was another 20 minutes before I got the preliminary tests. And then it was another HOUR before the doctor came to see me for two minutes, haphazardly checking out my heart and lungs and telling me everything looks fine. Which I knew. The only saving grace was texting with Liz, who hasn't really been around much the last two weeks due to work and other things. One turn of good fortune was my truck sat half an hour with an expired muni meter tag and didn't get ticketed. I'm pretty sure all the traffic asses have the same schedules and all go on breaks the same time.

At the station, I try to figure out how I'm missing two packages for my 5th floor stop when I counted 30 and scanned 30. One I know I probably goofed and entered a different number, explaining the missed van. But then there's this ghost package, bringing my total up to 86 when I KNOW I left with 85.

But that wasn't the capper to the day. Nope. The capper was the company doctor was at the station across the street, and I coulda been in and out in no time saving me all the wasted time and aggrivation that put me behind schedule. ARGH!

Fun little aside; in publishing, mistakes can happen. One happened today. Tommy called me up to tell me to check out my copy of X-Men: Manifest Destiny #5. Well, instead of that comic, it was X-Men/Spider-Man #3, the long-awaited Ben Reilly issue. OOOPS! Someone was asleep at quality control.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

SEEING RED

Whoever's bright idea it was to not only run a highway through a city but to put traffic lights on it needs to be shot. Driving down the highway back to the station, I couldn't stop in time as a light went red and ended up running it. Talking to Damien, turns out it's not a fireable offense as I believed. If it comes to it I'll just get a warning letter. FINE! I'll take it! It's a relief. Still pissed about the light. I was in just the right spot where if I tried to stop I'd run it, and if I gunned it I'd run it. No win situation.

Saturday, January 03, 2009

NEW LOAD

All my reviews are in the can as of today. I forgot about 2 until I was reminded by my higher-up, Al, so I churned those out within 2 hours. It looks like I'll be getting all the Spidey books he wanted to do as there was nobody stepping up to do the Iron Man books. I did the one I had just to give him one less to do, but as I said before outside the 100s I'm useless. Hell, even the latest essential barely clears the 20s, so that wouldn't be much help either. Now, the only intimidating thing is included in this batch I'm getting is Amazing Spidey #121 & 122, the deaths of Gwen Stacy and Green Goblin respectively. These entries are getting a half page instead of the usual third because not only were they big events, but they've been retconned all to hell in recent years...all of which needs to be mentioned. I'm thus saving those for last.

Friday, January 02, 2009

BACK AGAIN

What is it with Rory? It seems like every day he has a problem and needs to take something from me. His trucks go to crap, so he gets mine. His powerpads go down, so he gets mine. Today was a special kind of powerpad trade-off as the dipshit left his on top of his cart, and when he pushed it off the freight it fell down the shaft and shattered. Frigging idjit.

While I was getting my books today (yes, on a Friday...double delays due to back-to-back holidays) Ma texted me she was in the ER with pops. Apparently his scar got infected and there was a discharge. Lovely. We're waiting on to hear if it's a simple thing to clean or if he'll have to be operated on again.