Hey, Mom! The Explanation.

Here's the permanent dedicated link to my first Hey, Mom! post and the explanation of the feature it contains.

Monday, March 27, 2017

Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #629 - America is Waiting, Musical Monday 1703.27


Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #629 - America is Waiting, Musical Monday 1703.27

Hi Mom, I started this playlist two weeks ago while studying Calculus in Sangren, but then last week I came home sick.

I was going to keep this to just ten videos, like the Tree of Life in the Kabbalah, but then I decided to add the Kate Bush video, which seems very much in the theme of this set, and feeling that eleven videos is too odd and prime, I decided to add one more for an even dozen. When I went searching for just the right 12th video, I found the Killing Joke video that proved to be a great counter point to all the videos, the theme for which is "The State of the Hate Nation."

I mentioned "The State of the Hate Nation" in a recent blog post that I am very proud of that's about racism in comics: Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #627 - ASM#25 - Spider-Man pauses midfight to consider racist message. Please check it out if you haven't. I know you have been with me on this, Mom.

The Killing Joke video proved to be the perfect thing to cap off this set. The current nation seems to have a lot on common with the Reagan years of the 1980s. except the part where Trump is Putin of Russia's finger puppet. Can't really say Reagan and Bush were controlled by the Russians.

The central message here comes from the repeated lines in Byrne and Eno's great "America is Waiting" song that leads off the seminal masterpiece: My Life in the Bush of Ghosts:

"America is waiting for a message of some sort or another."

I am really proud of this set.

Great finds here, such as Sevdaliza, who came to my attention through those amazing algorithms of the Google-verse that's going to show me things that other people have liked who have liked what I have liked. She's amazing! Expect more Sevdaliza in future weeks.


The Google-verse also suggested that it was time to listen to Mogwai's "Ether," and though I featured that song in the masterful and amazingly best playlist so far this year --

Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #573 - Kieron Gillen's Best of for 2016 - Musical Monday 1701.30

-- I took Google's suggestion and added it as I think it's a good message, a progression in this building theme created by these videos.

I was also trying to think of bands and tracks that felt like they should go together. Byrne and Eno made me think of Burial, which led me to NIN, which made Cabaret Voltaire a natural extension of those three.

I was trying not to double up, but then, I realized that there's a reason I want two cuts from My Life in the Bush of Ghosts and two from Cabaret Voltaire. That's just right.

Obviously, the Gil Scott Heron track is righteous and fits perfectly with "America is Waiting," but also especially perfect because it's the Bernie Sanders edition.

Some may say that the Peter Gabriel song seems like an outlier here, but listen to the lyrics.

As Gabriel claims it's a story of human rights told to him by an Apache Indian.

What could be more perfect as part of this collection of interrelated tunes?

"I hold the line."

LINK TO THE AMERICA IS WAITING PLAYLIST ON YOU TUBE HERE.



David Byrne & Brian Eno - "America is Waiting" from My Life in the Bush of Ghosts



Gil Scott Heron - "The Revolution Will Not Be Televised" - from Soul of a Man



Kate Bush - "Cloudbursting" - from Hounds of Love


David Byrne & Brian Eno - "The Jezebel Spirit" from My Life in the Bush of Ghosts


Nine Inch Nails - "Closer"


Burial - "Ghost Hardware"


Peter Gabriel - "San Jacinto"


Mogwai - "Ether"


Cabaret Voltaire - "Ghostalk"


Cabaret Voltaire - "What Is Real"


Killing Joke - "Eighties"


Sevdaliza - "HUMAN"


+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Reflect and connect.

Have someone give you a kiss, and tell you that I love you.

I miss you so very much, Mom.

Talk to you tomorrow, Mom.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

- Days ago = 631 days ago

- Bloggery committed by chris tower - 1703.27 - 10:10 my time (7:10 PDT)


Sunday, March 26, 2017

Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #628 - Fantasy Baseball begins: Draft Day!

Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #628 - Fantasy Baseball begins: Draft Day!

Hi Mom,

Today is draft day as three of the fantasy Baseball leagues I play, including the two main ones for which I serve as commissioner, are drafting today.

I love all the stat research and analysis. It's the most intellectual part of Baseball and one that I truly adore.

So, less work today and plenty of number crunching as I try to find the best way to win.

But really, no one wins on draft day. The Baseball season is 162 games long. One must put one's nose to the grind stone each and every day with setting line ups, and most importantly, evaluating if one is getting the best value from each of one's players.

As you can see from the image above, I had high ranks, if not was league leader, in many pitching categories, but my offensive numbers were down in the league shown above (the Fellowship of the Ring League).

So, as you can see below, I totaled what was needed to win the league last year, and then totaled the projections of the players I drafted this year. I plan to do the same with my other league, I just haven't done so yet. Plus, I failed the save last year's totals for the other league, the Tiger Towne League. So I can't really do the comparison.

As you can see, I am pretty close across the board. Usually I tank SBs, and with the new team my projection is much higher, so as long as I am a little more competitive in that category. I also noticed that I failed to calculate RBIs. My other league doesn't use RBIs, and so I thought this one did not either. But it does.

I exceeded the goal total with hits, doubles, and runs. It's with home runs and walks that I need to make up more ground. I did focus a lot on hitters who make contact in this draft at the expense of patience and walks. For instance, Tomas is projected to only walk about 29 times in 500 some At Bats, which AWFUL (17.7 walk rate), but he's projected to bang 143 hits and 27 home runs, AND he went late in the draft, so I figure it may balance.

Since it's my league that emphasizes the importance of OBP and walking, I want to win that category, but I may not win it this year.

Also, these stat projections assume that I get all the stats out of the players, and this is not accurate as the bench is included here, and the bench will not always be active.

But it's a good plan, I think, despite some of the mitigating factors.


As these next charts show, I took fourth last year in this league.

That's not bad, but I want to do better.

I won this league two years ago.

But as you can see, I ranked sixth or seventh (3 means seventh, 4 means sixth) in most of the offensive categories. I actually did better in walks last year than I expect to do this year (third place).




But as you can see it's not always dismal. I saved this image below from a week when I was winning in everything, though my standing in the Fellowship league was lower (sixth) than where I ended up (fourth), which means I fought my way up two slots from August 30th to September 30th. Not bad.


winning all 1608.13

Three fantasy drafts went well, though I closed out the final one as it started at 8 p.m. and apparently went past ten pm.

I am excited for the season both in fantasy and the actual major league games.

Let's Play Ball!!

PS: I know baseball is a common noun and not normally capitalized, but it's my religion, so I capitalize Baseball.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Reflect and connect.

Have someone give you a kiss, and tell you that I love you.

I miss you so very much, Mom.

Talk to you tomorrow, Mom.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

- Days ago = 630 days ago

- Bloggery committed by chris tower - 1703.26 - 10:10

NOTE on time: When I post late, I had been posting at 7:10 a.m. because Google is on Pacific Time, and so this is really 10:10 EDT. However, it still shows up on the blog in Pacific time. So, I am going to start posting at 10:10 a.m. Pacific time, intending this to be 10:10 Eastern time. I know this only matters to me, and to you, Mom. But I am not going back and changing all the 7:10 a.m. times. But I will run this note for a while. Mom, you know that I am posting at 10:10 a.m. often because this is the time of your death.

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #627 - ASM#25 - Spider-Man pauses midfight to consider racist message


Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #627 - Amazing Spider-Man #25 Review - Spider-Man pauses midfight to consider racist message

Hi Mom,

So, this is how the blog works: material always presents itself.

If for the Internet alone there's always material coming at me in all kinds of ways, but I am also reading a great deal every week, and from my own reading, material will present itself.

So, last week, while recuperating, I was reading this huge, extended, mega-issue of The Amazing Spider-Man and it's $9.99 price tag. Wow. I hadn't noticed that when I bought it.

And out of the whole story and all the many things about it which are very good, one thing struck me: Spider-Man pauses mid-battle to consider the subtext of beating up just Asian people, who are given no characteristics other than being Asian. At least, they're not mute, faceless, hooded ninja (IE. the Hand), which we see Daredevil beating up a lot in comics and now on NETFLIX, too.

Spider-Man takes the time to wonder about the message of the great white heroes, himself, the All-American nerd genius, and a tall, athletic blonde, beating on the "Faceless Yellow Menace," Asians, something white hegemony has been doing to the Far East for a couple of hundred years.

Spider-Man comments that his New York battles are less homogenized and more diverse: "I am just used to beating up people of all races and creeds," he says. "That's how I do it in New York."

I loved that Spider-Man took the time to wonder about this inherent message, while Mockingbird acknowledged that they're in Hong Kong so "the good guys are Asian. The bad guys are Asian. Everyone here is Asian." Well, she may be oversimplifying, but by and large she's right.

Here's some pretty decent pictures I took of this sequence:




So, I started doing some digging to see what public opinion is about this page on the Internet.

Most reviews didn't even mention it.

Check them out here:

COMIC BOOK ROUNDUP OF AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #25

http://comicbookroundup.com/comic-books/reviews/marvel-comics/amazing-spider-man-(2015)/25

Also, the issue got a fairly high rating for comic book reviewers and fans who tend to be over-picky and a bit socio-pathic. The issue rates 7.8 from reviewers and 7.1 from general users.

But then, I found this guy's review (link below). The link goes to the print version and I also linked his You Tube review (also below).

Mr. Ernst though that Spider-Man's moment of social consciousness and Social Justice Warrior motivation was "unrealistic" and suggested that Mockingbird would not engage in discussion with him but would call him a "loser" for even bringing up the issue.

Also, he suggested that Slott was trying to prevent whiny kids on Tumblr from complaining about the racism, this guy whined in his You Tube review.

Well, that set me off. So I left him a comment (see image below) on his You Tube channel.

I saw notification that he responded.

I touched a nerve with my White Privilege comment as apparently he's a vet and has a huge chip on his shoulder about his service to the country.

Though that's my quick take on his rebuttal.
I actually didn't read it, and I don't plan to read it.

I said what I had to say.

I wanted other people to see my criticism, and then I am done with this moron.

I don't need to get in a flame war with someone such a lack of sophistication and such a lack of awareness about world problems.

https://douglasernst.blog/2017/03/19/amazing-spider-man-25-dan-slotts-peter-parker-wonders-if-punching-asian-criminals-is-racist/








As I wrote above, most reviewers did not mention the page. But a couple of critics did tackle it. Their reactions were a bit less pejorative than Mr. Ernst, but they also failed to "get" what Slott was doing with that page. Both of them thought the page was supposed to be FUNNY, you know, because racism is FUNNY and so commenting on racism is FUNNY.

Not surprising that none of these "reviewers" are Asian.

More White Privilege ignorance and blindness.

http://whateveraspidercan.com/2017/03/17/stillanerd-reviews-amazing-spider-man-2015-25/

So an entire page of a forty page story devotes itself towards a joke about Spider-Man wondering if he’s racist or not for beating up Asian gangsters in Hong Kong? And this scene is necessary because…?

http://www.spidermancrawlspace.com/2017/03/15/alford-notes-amazing-spider-man-25/


The Asian racist panels were just not funny. I’m not an overly sensitive guy and was not offended by it, but if you are going to make a joke that plays at all on racism, it really ought to be funny. Otherwise, it is just not worth the risk.

http://www.weirdsciencedccomics.com/2017/03/the-amazing-spider-man-25-review.html

Anyway, there's a lot to like in this comic. I have really been loving that Peter Parker is not perennial loser with no money all the time given that he's a genius with SPIDER POWERS. So finally, having played out that "Parker is always broke and a fuck up" angle for over 40 years, Parker now has a huge multi-national conglomerate and is putting his genius to work. I am praying that Marvel keeps this element for a long time and does not tear down Parker's success just for some extra pathos.

Likewise, this issue does a great job with the extended cast: Aunt May, Betty Brant, Harry Osborne now Lyman (changed to his mother's name), and even Mockingbird, whom Peter asks out on a date!

Also, the build up to the return of Norman Osborne is well handled, and Stuart Immomen's art is gorgeous.

Plus, I loved the commentary on racism.

More of the same, please.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Reflect and connect.

Have someone give you a kiss, and tell you that I love you.

I miss you so very much, Mom.

Talk to you tomorrow, Mom.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

- Days ago = 629 days ago

- Bloggery committed by chris tower - 1703.25 - 10:10

NOTE on time: When I post late, I had been posting at 7:10 a.m. because Google is on Pacific Time, and so this is really 10:10 EDT. However, it still shows up on the blog in Pacific time. So, I am going to start posting at 10:10 a.m. Pacific time, intending this to be 10:10 Eastern time. I know this only matters to me, and to you, Mom. But I am not going back and changing all the 7:10 a.m. times. But I will run this note for a while. Mom, you know that I am posting at 10:10 a.m. often because this is the time of your death.

Friday, March 24, 2017

Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #626 - This Was Supposed to be the Future - Random Art stuff


Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #626 - This Was Supposed to be the Future - Random Art stuff

Hi Mom, I need to do a few of these art only posts, so I can archive all these images out of my blog folder.

I am not going to add much text here.

I prefer to let the images speak for themselves.

I am not even adding captions.

Enjoy!
























+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Reflect and connect.

Have someone give you a kiss, and tell you that I love you.

I miss you so very much, Mom.

Talk to you tomorrow, Mom.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

- Days ago = 628 days ago

- Bloggery committed by chris tower - 1703.24 - 10:10

NOTE on time: When I post late, I had been posting at 7:10 a.m. because Google is on Pacific Time, and so this is really 10:10 EDT. However, it still shows up on the blog in Pacific time. So, I am going to start posting at 10:10 a.m. Pacific time, intending this to be 10:10 Eastern time. I know this only matters to me, and to you, Mom. But I am not going back and changing all the 7:10 a.m. times. But I will run this note for a while. Mom, you know that I am posting at 10:10 a.m. often because this is the time of your death.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #625 - Oxford Comma Settled in Court of Law



Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #625 - Oxford Comma Settled in Court of Law

Hey Mom,

It's Saturday, even though this post is dated for Thursday.
I am feeling better, but I am still not 100% well.
I had a Calculus test, AND final grades due this morning for CTU. Now the catch up.

This newsy item caught my eye.

I am quite the fan of the Oxford Comma.

I believe it be rather indispensible and do not believe that sentences should be left without it when it's needed.

I loved this bit because it shows a legal ruling for the necessity of the Oxford Comma.

That comma is essential people.

Really, it is.



FROM - http://mashable.com/2017/03/15/oxford-comma-changes-court-case/#3Q15JxCt2Sqs
Court settles debate that’s divided grammar nerds for decades

Ah, the Oxford comma. Journalists often fight over it, academics love it and a lot of people don't care about or even know what it is. But this singular bit of punctuation is actually super important. 
Just ask a couple dairy drivers in Maine who recently won a labor case and overtime pay — all because of the state's failure to slip in that crucial piece of punctuation into its labor policy guidelines.
If you don't already know, the Oxford comma is the last one in a series, such as in the sentence: "I like to run, skip, and jump."  Take out that Oxford comma and the sentence reads like this: "I like to run, skip and jump." Sometimes, the lack of a comma can leave ambiguity in the sentence.
So what does this have to do with a bunch of workers trying to get overtime pay?
Well, the Maine dairy drivers sued their employer for overtime pay that would have applied to when they were driving and distributing dairy products. "Distribution" is mentioned in a few lines about what tasks don't count for overtime pay, but the thing is, those few lines fail to include an Oxford comma. And the result is confusion about whether or not distribution really is left out of overtime pay.
As explained in the circuit judge's ruling, the state labor guidelines in question are the following, called Exemption F, which lists which work activities do not count for overtime pay:
The canning, processing, preserving, freezing, drying, marketing, storing, packing for shipment or distribution of:
  1. Agricultural produce;
  2. Meat and fish product; and
  3. Perishable foods
If there was an Oxford comma after "packing for shipment" then neither "packing" not "distribution" would be covered by overtime pay. However, without it, "packing for shipment or distribution" count as one activity: packing. Distribution is not covered in the list of overtime exemptions. So they should get paid for it.
Of course, the state argued it did not mean to exclude "distribution" from that clause about overtime pay, but they didn't make that clear through such a poorly written sentence, as explained in the court's ruling.
"If the drivers engage only in distribution and not in any of the standalone activities that Exemption F covers ... the drivers fall outside of Exemption F's scope and thus within the protection of the Maine overtime law."
The new federal appeals court decision reversed a previous ruling for the case, which was first filed back in May 2014. And the new decision came down for just one reason, as the first line of the court ruling said. "For want of a comma, we have this case."
Like them or loathe them, those Oxford commas have their uses.


+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Reflect and connect.

Have someone give you a kiss, and tell you that I love you.

I miss you so very much, Mom.

Talk to you tomorrow, Mom.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

- Days ago = 627 days ago

- Bloggery committed by chris tower - 1703.23 - 10:10

NOTE on time: When I post late, I had been posting at 7:10 a.m. because Google is on Pacific Time, and so this is really 10:10 EDT. However, it still shows up on the blog in Pacific time. So, I am going to start posting at 10:10 a.m. Pacific time, intending this to be 10:10 Eastern time. I know this only matters to me, and to you, Mom. But I am not going back and changing all the 7:10 a.m. times. But I will run this note for a while. Mom, you know that I am posting at 10:10 a.m. often because this is the time of your death.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #624 - My Oldest - A collection of comic books - part one



Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #624 - My Oldest - A collection of comic books - part one 

Hey Mom,

So, I am recovering from this terrible virus that caught me in its jaws rather firmly.

Recuperation tactics: rest, fluids, and comic books. (Okay, also Motrin, Chinese Food, and puppies.)

It's not that I just read comic books when I am ill. I read them every day. Rarely does a day go by that I don't read at least one comic book. Today, in recovery, I re-read all the Revival trade paper backs and then read the new one before bed.

Anyway, comics make me feel good. They are part of a comforting world, despite problems I may have with their messages or depictions of people from different cultures or genders. Though, they are improving. I am working on a new post about Spider-Man's recent comment about racist messages in comics, but it's not ready yet, so, since I am a day behind, here's this post.

I have been working on this post for a while. I started collecting bits of the T-shirts blog that featured my oldest comic books (for which I made a category). I thought I could get this all in one post, but as I saw how huge it all grew, I trimmed. And then, I trimmed again to just this five entries: Batman (Detective Comics), the Fantastic Four, Flash, Superman, and Hawkman.

Enjoy. This is show and tell.





+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+

FROM: http://365-tshirts.blogspot.com/2014/02/t-shirt-330-gotham-city-athletic.html

+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+
MY FIRST COMIC BOOK

This is the comic book cover from the first comic book I ever owned, originally published in May of 1966. I was four years old and living in Traverse City.

I do not remember much about the story, and it would take me a long time to track down the actual issue in all the boxes; the issue itself is almost complete destroyed because it has been read so many times and handled by a small child (me).

It's a Gardner Fox and Carmine Infantino issue. I wrote about Infantino during the earliest days of this blog (T-shirt #20) because he passed away. Since this is my first comic book, Infantino was the first comic book artist I knew.

I loved this issue to death, and the nature of this story with its tricky series of traps. A brilliant storyteller, Gardner Fox's work had a profound effect on my own sensibilities and ideas about story telling as a young person.

The Cluemaster is a very silly villain. I mean, why would you want to taunt the super hero trying to catch you by leaving CLUES. Well, unless you're crazy like a loon as most of Batman's villains are.

The again, what do you expect of a former GAME SHOW HOST turned villain.

I would keep an eye on Drew Carey if I were you.

MY FIRST COMIC BOOK - MY OLDEST BATMAN COMIC BOOK 



+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+=+

from: http://365-tshirts.blogspot.com/2014/02/t-shirt-344-fantastic-four-logo-printed.html

Okay, safe to read here. If it's not entirely clear, I am a huge fan of The Fantastic Four. The transformations of these characters after their trip into space was both exciting and horrifying. Though the dreams of every child comic book reader were filled with the ways in which a serendipitous accident would confer super powers to the dreamer, the story of these four also warned of the dangers. Though Sue, Reed, and Johnny could pass form "normal" when not using their powers, Ben Grimm was forever changed, trapped in that hideous orange rock body. He did not even have the luxury of hiding his monstrosity like the Angel in the X-Men who bound his wings in a special harness worn under regular street clothes or Bruce Banner, who managed times of respite and normalcy, as long as he remained calm, between bouts of being the Hulk. The Thing also established the greatest theme of Marvel Comics' early years, the tragedy and angst of the New Wave of super heroes, more complicated versions of their counterparts from the 1940s and 1950s. Reed Richards carried the guilt of causing his best friend's seemingly irreversible transformation, though they would both seek transformation all the time, a "cure," which may not be the best thing after all (and never was each time they found a way) as Ben Grimm always returned to being the Thing without the chance to pass for normal. Though Reed was tormented by guilt, Ben Grimm's anger and pain were much more of a driving force for the stories of The Fantastic Four for most of the 1960s and 1970s.

My first Fantastic Four comic book made this motif abundantly clear. I started my reading of Fantastic Four in December of 1967 with issue #69. Looking over the next twenty issues or so, I would estimate that The Fantastic Four was definitely my favorite comic book as I have more of those early issues from 1967-1970 than any other comic book.

MY OLDEST

If you want to tour my blog a bit, check out the "My Oldest" category on the right side of the main page of the blog. There I have collected blog entries where I have posted some of the oldest comic book issues in my collection.

COMIC  VINE LINK TO THIS ISSUE: BY BEN BETRAYED

In Fantastic Four #69, Ben Grimm's mind  has been manipulated chemically by the Mad Thinker who disguises himself as mustachioed charlatan so Ben does not recognize him. All of Ben's pain and bitterness about being the Thing and blaming Reed for making him this way is twisted into hatred by the Mad Thinker's brain washing.

The Fantastic Four try to fight Ben and subdue him, for his own safety, as the New York police call in the Air Force to take him out.

In a cover that harks back to King Kong, Kirby does some of his best and most dynamic art work and story telling as Jack Kirby was the driving force behind the excellence of The Fantastic Four comic.

Not only did this comic inspire me for its story and compelling art, but it cemented my FF fandom already fueled by the 1967 cartoon (see ad farther below) from Hanna Barbera.

Also, this issue is my first Marvel Comic -- as my first ever comic book was a DC publication -- opened up a whole new world to me of Mighty Marveldom as I began to enjoy the writing of Stan's Soapbox and began drooling over ads for Mighty Marvel T-shirts (see image below). I was entranced by Marveldom and wanted my own No Prize in the Mighty Marvel Manner. I was a REAL FRANTIC ONE from then on.

Examining the run of issues in that time period, this may be one of the few cases, especially at such a young age that I bought the next issue (#70) of a comic (as I rarely bought consecutive issues back then) as well as seven of the next ten issues (72, 74, 76, 77, 78,79, and 80).

In December of 1967, I was five about to turn six years old. I was just learning to read. My father (and sometimes my mother) was still reading to me before bed. Often my choices were comics, often I chose THIS and these other Fantastic Four comics. My world and the world of the comics were the same: they were both all about family, all about having a HOME to share with family. And love. Love for each other, love for family, love for the home and the security it provided.

To the left is Ben's final vow to "get" Richards for his betrayals as this story was continued in the next issue.

Check out this art in the page below (page 12) from issue #69. This is some of Kirby's best work. In fact, I would argue that Kirby's work from issue one of Fantastic Four through when he left the book in issue 102 is the best and most fertile period of the Fantastic Four and some of Kirby's best work in comics. Kirby really begins to hit his stride with issues around #s 20-30, and he begins the most classic period of FF history with issue 48, "The Coming of Galactus," truly establishing  the comic by it's subtitle: "The World's Greatest Comic Magazine!" But then, the long story arc starting with issue #68 and moving through the second coming of Galactus, Doctor Doom stories, Ben in space as a prisoner of a War Games despot, culminating in issues with the Frightful Four, the Inhumans, and the mega-battle issue 100 are some of the most amazing work in all of Marvel Comics history!!

 

'NUFF SAID!!


from: http://365-tshirts.blogspot.com/2013/04/t-shirt-20-flash-logo.html

I was inspired to select the Flash shirt for today's shirt not only because I love the Flash insignia but also because of the recent death of one of the greatest and most influential of artists who worked on the Silver Age Flash: Carmine Infantino. My friend Charles Skaggs, who writes the blog Damn Good Coffee... and Hot!, wrote an excellent post on the death of Infantino that can be read here:

 THE FLASH's Carmine Infantino Passes at 87.

My parents purchased an issue of the Flash for me as one of my earliest comic books. I am including two covers here. I am not sure which issue I owned first, but these are definitely my first two Flash comics. Given that 177 comes before 180, it's likely that the "big head" issue was my first Flash comic, though in the old days some back issues could be found lingering in racks and shelving units at the grocery store or drug store, and it's possible that I was given 180 first or both together. Flash #177 was published in 1968 when I was six years old. I received my first comic in 1966 at the age of four, but that's a story for another time (see above and my description of  Detective Comics #351).

I love the Flash because the Flash is cool. I won't render a complete biography replete with descriptions of all the characters to assume the mantle of the Flash. Those who are interested can check the Wikipedia page for the Scarlet Speedster. Wikipedia is actually quite a good source for basic information about things, especially comic book related matters. And OMG! I just found the DC WIKI DATABASE. WOW!! I am having a geek overdose.


FROM http://365-tshirts.blogspot.com/2013/04/t-shirt-31-happy-anniversary-superman.html


It has been a long time since Superman comics graced the top of my stack of comics for the week. I feel this statement deserves explanation, so you know what I mean. Each week, when I bring the new comics home from the comic shop, I put the new comics into the stack of comics that I am currently reading. There are ALWAYS comics already in the stack. I have never cleared out the stack from the previous week, though I do make substantial progress on days when I take time off to relax and read a couple of dozen comics in one lounging. I prioritize comics I want to read IMMEDIATELY first, and these go to the top of the stack. Current faves that go straight to the top of the stack are (in no meaningful order) The Walking Dead, The All New X-Men, The Age of Ultron, Daredevil, Aquaman, Justice League, Fantastic Four, Guardians of the Galaxy, Avengers, Uncanny Avengers, Uncanny X-Men, Hawkeye, and several more that probably do not leap to mind right now. See? No Superman.

1986 was different. John Byrne's issues graced the top of my stack every week. Not long ago, I enjoyed the run of All-Star Superman. I liked Jim Lee on Superman. I like JMS's run on Superman. And as I have already written in my FreakAngels post #22, I was a big fan of the Team Superman Group-think concept of interlocking issues creating one continuing story of weekly installments despite how many die hard comics fans detested those years (1991-2000ish). Though I do not count Superman even in my top ten of favorite all time heroes, unlike Bill Artis who sells me comics at Fanfare Sports and Entertainment (who is the single biggest Superman fan I know), I do have some Superman love in my deeper past.

My first issue of a Superman comic was the February 1967 issue of Superman #194: "The Death of Lois Lane." 

ASIDE: Damn, I love the DC comics Wikia.)

This excellent What If story was a great one to start my Superman reading as a child of five years of age. But most of my fond memories of childhood love of Superman are for Superboy and his adventures with the Legion of Superheroes, a future superhero club that I thought was a really cool concept. I also was very influenced by Alan Moore's Superman stories, especially the one from Superman Annual #11 featuring the classic "For the Man Who Has Everything" story.

This shirt in today's blog entry displays the main image from the Death of Superman storyline in 1992. This story seemed like more of a novelty at the time. These days it seems like crossovers and big events are continuous and overlapping with many running at the same time. Back in 1992, big events seemed less frequent, maybe just once a year, and did not seem redundant. I do not recall the comic companies trying a big death of a main hero event before the Death of Superman. Granted, DC Comics killed the Flash in 1985, but this was hardly a main event with a huge crossover mini-series. Without doing any research, I do not recall any major superhero death event before the huge (and I do mean HUGE) Superman death event in 1992. The story was so pivotal it inspired me to buy the shirt featured here because to that point I did not own a Superman shirt, not even as a kid (unless my parents will tell me differenly).

NOTE: With some quick research, I find that the Death of Robin pre-dates this death of Superman by a couple of years (1988-89):

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Batman:_A_Death_in_the_Family

I must admit that I am one of the few people on the planet who actually liked the 2006 Bryan Singer film, Superman Returns, with the exception of yet what I consider another failed depiction of Lex Luthor despite the acting talents of Kevin Spacey. I am looking forward to the new film by Zack Snyder. I have liked the way DC has tried to make Superman more gritty, though the stories have failed to intrigue me enough to reach the top of the weekly stack; though do not get me wrong, I am reading both Action Comics and Superman each month or eventually when several issues clog up my stack. Maybe, if DC really wants to re-vitalize the character, the company should consider killing him and leaving him dead for 24 years. It worked for the Flash.

- chris tower - 1304.21 - 11:21
































FROM: http://365-tshirts.blogspot.com/2013/05/t-shirt-49-hawkman.html

T-shirt #49: Hawkman or Wings are Cool

Super-heroes with wings = cool.

The Angel, the Falcon, Dawnstar, Birdman, Man-Bat, Bumblebee, Red Raven, and Stingray among others.

And Hawkman.

Wings are cooler than big capes, though big capes are a close second (Doctor Strange and Batman being two of the coolest cape-wearers... though some people would add SPAWN to this list).

These loves, like a love for capes, all originate in childhood play. Toys with wings are very cool because flight simulation play is a very natural tendency, especially for boys. Freud linked flight dreams with sex, but then Freud linked everything with sex. There may be something to Freud's theories, but I think they may be outmoded. Growing up in the 1960s and 1970s, I spent a lot of time simulating flight, thinking about flight and even wearing capes. (Big surprise.) I do not consider these cape wearing play times to be based in sex fantasies. These were flight fantasies. I wanted to fly. Besides, the futurists and science fiction writers promised that by 2013 (and possibly much sooner), we would all have our own jet packs and flying cars.


WHERE'S MY DAMN JET PACK?

So, this all brings me to Hawkman. Today, I am wearing my Hawkman shirt, ordered before I started this blog but purchased since the blog began. And though the picture does not represent the color well, it is a very gorgeous golden color, another yellow-gold shirt for spring.

I am not sure that I am ready to make a top ten or top twenty superhero list yet (though this kind of categorization is partly what this blog is all about), but I am ready to make a distinction about my love for certain Silver Age DC heroes. Loving Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman is kind of taken for granted. I really loved the secondary heroes who were featured less often, such as The Flash (T-shirt #20),  Deadman  (T-shirt #43), The Atom, Adam Strange, Elongated Man, Phantom Stranger, Red Tornado, the Martian Manhunter, Aquaman, Green Lantern, Green Arrow, and Hawkman.

Several of these heroes enjoyed their own titles (Aquaman, Phantom Stranger, Flash, The Atom) while others were paired in companion books (Hawkman/Atom, Green Arrow/Green Lantern) while others languished in special appearances only.

Part of what makes DC comics confusing for many readers is the mixed up history. For a long time, Marvel was more linear and simplified by comparison, though this is no longer true. Hawkman is a good case study in DC's ongoing continuity entanglements with its characters as there are multiple versions of Hawkman to choose from. The good news is that they all have wings. And wings are cool.

Hawkman started out as Carter Hall debuting in Flash Comics #1 in 1940. American archeologist Carter Hall is the reincarnation of an ancient Egyptian Prince Khufu killed with his consort Chay-Ara (Shiera Sanders, aka Hawkgirl) by the priest Hath-Set.

Later, when DC rebooted its Golden Age characters in the Silver Age in the early 1960s, Hawkman becomes Katar Hol, an imperial prince from the planet Thanagar who becomes a member of the the planet's Hawk-Police that leads him (and his wife/partner, Shayera Thol, aka Hawkgirl and later, more appropriately, Hawkwoman) to earth tracking a Thanagarian criminal. Katar underwent another reboot in 1989 with the prestige series Hawkworld by Timothy Truman, followed by the Hawkman volume 3 series that ran until 1996. DC has once again rebooted Hawkman with the New 52. Hawkman is now just Carter Hall, but it has yet to be established if he is an alien Thanagarian or a reincarnated Egyptian.

My first introduction to Hawkman came in the early issues of Justice League and then Hawkman #24, published in February/March 1968, featuring two stories among my favorites from those early comics: "The Robot Raiders from Planet Midnight" (isn't that the best title ever?) and "The Man Who Grew Wings."

I am reading the current Hawkman comics, even though I am not enjoying them as much as most of the other New 52 titles. Still, Hawkman has wings. And wings are cool.

FINAL NOTE: The toy comes from the excellent series Kingdom Come created by Mark Waid and Alex Ross and published by DC Comics in 1996. According to Wikipedia: "Hawkman: Now a literal 'hawk-man', he has become a guardian of nature, though also referred to as an ecological terrorist. The story does not specify which version of Hawkman this is, apart from "combining the spirit of the old with the otherworldly flesh of the new", which suggests Carter Hall in the body of the post-Zero Hour "Hawkgod". He is killed in the nuclear blast" ("Kingdom Come (comics)," Wikipedia, 2013).

Did I mention that wings are cool?

- chris tower - thinking about flying - 1305.09 - 9:12

One drawing courtesy of Elvin Ching/ ZeroPointFive





Art by Elvin Ching






Posts about my oldest comics to be continued in part two to be posted some time soon...

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Reflect and connect.

Have someone give you a kiss, and tell you that I love you.

I miss you so very much, Mom.

Talk to you tomorrow, Mom.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

- Days ago = 626 days ago

- Bloggery committed by chris tower - 1703.22 - 10:10

NOTE on time: When I post late, I had been posting at 7:10 a.m. because Google is on Pacific Time, and so this is really 10:10 EDT. However, it still shows up on the blog in Pacific time. So, I am going to start posting at 10:10 a.m. Pacific time, intending this to be 10:10 Eastern time. I know this only matters to me, and to you, Mom. But I am not going back and changing all the 7:10 a.m. times. But I will run this note for a while. Mom, you know that I am posting at 10:10 a.m. often because this is the time of your death.