Wednesday, December 31, 2003

I saw the film Ikiru (which means "to live" in Japanese) by Akira Kurosawa. Such an incredible film, I was near tears for almost the entire second half. Kurosawa so perfectly captured the meaning of our fragile lives within this tale of an old man coming to terms with the end of his life. The film spoke to me like scripture-- the message of the Kingdom, as through a parable from Jesus Christ-- love one another, benefit all mankind. Live.

The Criterion Collection will be releasing a DVD version of this film on January 6th. Rent it. Buy it. Borrow my copy when I get it. Ikiru is one of Kurosawa's finest films.

Antihero Comics will have a booth set up for the Dallas Comic Con's Fan Day. Please come by and pick up your copy of Some Other Day. I will also be selling copies of Exit 126 and Brian Kelly's Francis and the Vegas Tramps.

This Saturday, January 3rd from 11am to 5pm

Richardson Civic Center
411 W Arapaho Road
Richardson TX

Admission: FREE!

Tuesday, December 23, 2003

"Let me tell you something, there is no way you will ever stay inspired as long as you are doing things for accolades or grades or recognition."

-thatbrokengirl (via Daniel)
Joe Strummer, Punk Prophet
by Andrew Careaga

Joe Strummer, the gravel-voiced frontman of The Clash, leaps from a Belgium concert stage to attack a 10-foot-tall barbed wire fence. He tears at it with his bare hands, intent on destroying the wall between an inner court of fans—an “arena within an arena”—and the outer court of “less privileged” punks, the outsiders whom concert security had “herded like cattle” to the margins. Immediately a bank of security guards is on his back, pulling Strummer from the wall of wire. Just as quickly, though, a mass of Clash fans rushes the guards and, in the true spirit of punk, anarchy ensues
Merry Christmas everybody. Having these holiday break has been wonderful. I've been able to get a lot of work done. Folding and stapling, folding and stapling, folding and stapling the mini-comic. Getting ready for the Dallas Comic Con.

Friday, December 19, 2003

Teen Angsty Moment:
"I hate everyone."
-Angela Chase, My So-Called Life

Thursday, December 18, 2003

Personally, I'd be embarrassed-- but that's just me. I guess this band just really, really, really wants to rock.
Saw it last night with Melissa and our friends Mel and Jorge. I can honestly say I have never been more emotionally invested in a film. The battle for Middle Earth had me in a state of continual awe-- mouth wide open, not blinking, awe. I literally did not know how it was going to end or who was going to win. Incredible film.

Wednesday, December 17, 2003

TURTLE: You're way ahead of yourself.
BOY: I am the way.
("He would've walked back home, but that would've been redundant. He was home.")

-from Scott Morse's Soulwind
From Chuck Colson (with Anne Morse), his article The Postmodern Crackup:
"Is postmodernism—the philosophy that claims there is no transcendent truth—on life support?"

Thank you, Mr. Colson, for completely misunderstanding (or, at best, grossly simplifying) a concept to fit your own agenda and worldview. You have proved to me, three things:
1.) People cannot see outside of their own perspective
2.) Yes, some perspectives do not deserve the priviledge they are given.
3.) You are not as well-informed as I hoped.

"The philosophy that claims there is no transcendent truth"? Nearly every word in that statement is wrong. Have you read any text from a postmodern theorist? Any? One?

Does it scare anyone that Colson is considered an influential thinker within American Christianity?

Troy Dyer from Reality Bites said it best:
"You are the reason Cliffnotes were invented."

***more from Chuck***

"I spoke at my alma mater, Brown University, in June, arguing that without acknowledging moral truth, it's impossible for colleges to teach ethics. I've been saying this since the late 1980s, all over America, and I've yet to be successfully contradicted."

Um, you're also a prick.

"Postmodernists claim we can have no "grand metanarrative" that makes sense of reality. Since there's no such thing as truth, all principles are merely personal preferences."

Moving from grand metanarrative to truth is terribly simplistic. The grand metanarrative is a little more complex than a 1:1 with your favorite word: truth.

Your personal preference for defending a keyword within your theology is ironic.

"But then came September 11, the day terrorists imposed their preferences, murdering 3,000 innocent Americans."

Are you suggesting that postmodernism killed 3,000 Americans? I'd think those terrorists do not believe in multiple narratives that are equally valid. They seem fairly convinced in the truth of their cause. Chuck, the terrorists might endorse your own philosophy and disdain for forward thinking.

"Christianity offers a belief system that is, as Paul tells Festus, 'true and reasonable.' "

C.S. Lewis stated that the believability of the Christian story comes from it being so wonderfully unreasonable. Just a thought.

"It would be the supreme irony—and a terrible tragedy—if we found ourselves slipping into postmodernity just when the broader culture has figured out it's a dead end."

Broader culture? Soccer moms? But HOW is it a dead end? Because the postmodern philosophy does not acknowledge truth? Why does everything fall apart? Maybe for you... or maybe you just need a villain in order to continue your own form of Christian imperialism?

Maybe I need a villain?

Monday, December 15, 2003

Me. Used in the bio section for Some Other Day.

The artwork for Some Other Day is finished. Brian Kelly did an amazing job on this project. I spent late hours this past weekend working on the overall design of the book. I love design-- almost as much as writing. It's exciting to put together a product that looks good. Hopefully I've done that. The photoshop files will go to the printer today.

Thursday, December 11, 2003

Believe it or not, I had to research the Dr.Phil TV show for a script I'm working on. I visited his website. If you fit one of the below categories, you could be on the show! Dear god...

Spouse Or Loved One Having Hygiene Problems?
Is Your Spouse Going Through A Mid-Life Crisis?
Does Your Spouse Constantly Quote Dr. Phil?
Does A Family Member Embarrass You?
Does Your Husband Need A Make-Over?
Are You And Your Twin TOO Similar?
Does Your Spouse Treat Your Pet Like A Person?
Husband Won't Stand Up For His Wife/Family?
Debate Dr. Phil About the Dr. Phil Family
Speak out About the Dr. Phil Family!
Do You Disagree With a Dr. Phil Family Member?
Diet Horror Stories?
LA Area Only: Want to Lose 20-30 Pounds?
Does Your Husband Act Like He Is Still Single?
Sex Change Dilemma?
Do You Lie About Your Age?
Role Of The Man Continued...
Decided To Divorce And Need It at No Charge?
Fighting Over The Right Way To Divorce?
Filing For DIVORCE In Denver Colorado?
Toddler Playing With Matches?
Is Your Spouse A Big Mouth With Your Kids?
Is Your Family The Bickersons? Always Fighting?
Work With Kids And Want Dr. Phil To Do Your Job?
Is Your Spouse Behaving Badly?
Engaged and Moving In Together?
Is Your Son Becoming A Woman?
Big Money...Bigger Problems?
Always Fighting With Spouse About Where To Live?
Happily Married But Fight Over ONE Thing?
ALWAYS Fighting With Spouse Over ONE Stupid Thing?
Fight With Spouse ONLY Around The Dinner Table?
Fighting With Spouse ONLY At Bed Time?
Weight Loss Challenge for Teens
Feel You Did Not Marry Your TRUE LOVE?
Want Your Adult Child To Finally Move Out?
Don't Know How To Ask Spouse To Move Out Of House?
Houseguest Who Has Over Stayed Their Welcome?
Betrayed Your True Love And Want Forgiveness?
Have You Gone To The EXTREME To Find TRUE LOVE?
Family Doesn't Believe You Found Your TRUE LOVE?
Disagree With a Family Member's Parenting Style
Is Your Spouse Too Strict on the Children
Can't Control Your Temper With Your Children
Who Would You Most Want To Trade Places With?
Tired Of The Fast Life?
Have The Most Boring Sex Life On The Planet?
Feel More Like A Sex Object Than A Wife?
You're Married But Your Sister Is Not?
Do You Have The Worst Job Ever?
Lying About Your Identity to Get Ahead?
I'm A Dr. Phil Weight Loss Challenge SUCCESS STORY
During lunch today, I saw a student in the hallway take gum out of her mouth and throw it on the ground.

Someone will get gum on the bottom of their shoe, because someone else threw the gum on the ground. What sort of creature acts without thought of consequence? Maybe I'm overreaching, but such actions seem emblematic of the depravity and apathy of the human condition. We could blame a bad upbrining, bad home life. Maybe it was genetics? Maybe she was born without a soul? Maybe all her friends were doing it and she wanted to be cool?

The student didn't see that I saw her action. She probably wouldn't care. Do I yell at her using my "teacher voice"? Do I give her the "evil eye"? Do I force her to pick it up? Do I use my authority to teach her: "People with souls throw their gum in the trashcan. You do want a soul, don't you?"

Instead, I kept walking. Bent down. Picked up the gum and put it in a thrashcan outside. I doubt she saw me, nor did I do it so she would see me. After all, this student has no soul. What would it matter? Tomorrow, she'll do the same thing once she's finished with her gum. I was merely thinking about the victims, the soles without gum on them... I was keeping them safe.

In hindsight, maybe I should've acted differently. But at the moment, her actions only left me to ponder: "So this is what people without a soul do-- I mean, in an uneventful moment. They can't always be plotting some sinister evil. They can't always be conspiring the downfall of human civilization. In their spare time, they do this."
Reading Lost at Sea right now. Melissa read it last night. Must recommend to Shanna.

Wednesday, December 10, 2003

Parody is the highest form of flattery?
My students performed their skits today. Each group had to create a skit in the style of a Greek drama, i.e. use of masks, chorus, etc. One group decided to make "Mr. Hopkins" their hero. They made a mask to look like me, complete with beard. They parodied my crack-like addiction to coca-cola and my love of comic books. I was depicted as quite Charlie Brown-esque in my demeanor.

Ah, those wacky students, good grief... mmm, a coke sounds good right now. That, and a comic book.

Tuesday, December 09, 2003

I noticed James listened to my radio interview (as noted here, here, and here). Thanks bud.

Who is Craig Thompson? He wrote Blankets-- an absolutely amazing literary achievement within the comic book medium.

Monday, December 08, 2003

Transgressive Meditation: Smoking Nuns

Bethany with Bare-Naked Ladies.
The best looking women are Irish! Miss Ireland wins Miss Universe contest.

Sunday, December 07, 2003

Based off my previous posts, the blogger banner ad came up with this advertising for my site:

Gay Relationships
Relationship-minded Gays & Lesbians Pictures, Profiles, Chat and More!

Relationship Saver
Save your relationship even if your partner is unwilling. Guaranteed.

Related Searches: • kevin smith • relationship problems

Friday, December 05, 2003

I hearby promise before God and the internet blogging community:
I will be nice to iMac. :)

It seems to feed off of my frustration. The more I yell at it, the less it wants to do what I want it to. Do not be mean to iMac. Do not taunt or disrespect it. Maybe, in time, we can learn to be friends again-- you, the iMac, and me, it's wayward user.
O Holy Night! (the train wreck version)
My apologies to Calvary Chapel of Louisa.

Thursday, December 04, 2003

How to Love an ESFJ (via personalitytype.com)

* Appreciate how hard I work to please, nurture, and take care of you and our home.
* Respect my opinions and need for order and control.
* Support my feelings and never ask me to compromise my values.
* Be kind, considerate, polite, and helpful in return.
* Try not to disrupt my routines or create too much change or chaos.
* Above all - express your appreciation and devotion genuinely and frequently.

(and knowing is half the battle...)

Wednesday, December 03, 2003

Observations made while driving to school:
* empty beer cans flying onto the highway from the back of a pickup truck
* a bootleg DVD of "Kill Bill" for sale at the Fuel Stop in south Dallas
* a man walking along Interstate 20 reading a book

I'm driving, listening to Nine Inch Nails Pretty Hate Machine, and thinking about Oedipus and Jocasta. What drove her to suicide? What drove him to gouge out his eyes? I don't think it was the discovery. It was the realization that deep down they always knew... they just didn't ever voice it.

I started work on another comic book script, a re-telling of Antigone. It's going to be messed up.

Tuesday, December 02, 2003

"All stories are true, every last one of them. All myths, all legends, all fables. If you believe them true, then they are true. If you don't believe them, then all that can be said is that they are true for someone else" — Dave Sim, ‘Cerebus’

Monday, December 01, 2003

During 4th period, one student asked another student, "Where are you from?"
He responds with "Dallas, north side, represent!"

North side? Like Richardson, Plano, Carrollton? Yo. Galleria, in da house. (?)
even our questions presume too much

A Thanksgiving update from Melissa
Some group is staging a protest outside our high school today at 2:30. They are protesting the gay/straight student alliance organization (Spectrum) we have on campus. The response from our principal to the faculty is simply ignore them. Don't give them the attention they want. It's a rather diplomatic response and I appreciate it.

It's amazing how my opinions on this issue have developed over the course of a few years. Many well-meaning people assume a disciple of the Son of God/Son of Man Jesus Christ would clearly be opposed to homosexuals. I'm not. On the whole, I believe sexuality and sexual norms are a cultural construct. Within any given group or society, some behavior is deemed more appropriate than other behavior. For any particular group to critique "deviant" behavior for another group makes me uncomfortable-- particularly if the behavior exists within a mutual, consenting, convenant relationship. When sexual behavior is forced, abusive, and outside of an agreed convenant-- I have problems with this-- whether heterosexual or homosexual. I have a problem with co-dependent, emotionally reckless relationships. I have a problem with self-centered, self-serving superficial relationships.

Love is the higher law. From my own observation, the people who protest homosexuality do so with an overwhelming sense bitterness, fear, and hatred. How could I align myself with such people, even if they are Christian?

Should there be a gay/straight organization on the campus of a public school? If it is student run (which it is), I applaud any efforts to create dialogue on an issue of concern for teenagers attempting to understand their own identity.

High school is no longer just a place of learning. It's a political warzone. As a teacher, I'm not here to tell my students what to think. I want them to think for themselves, and if they disagree with me in the process-- that's okay.
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