12 Months of Boston

12 Months of Boston

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I started drawing this before Friday’s car chase, shootout, manhunt and lockdown (which was voluntary, martial law whiners) craziness. Boston (And its neighbors, who I didn’t forget, because I’m using “Boston” as shorthand for Greater Boston.) will return to normal. The bombings will cast a pall over the year, but we’ll still find reasons to day drink and get way too worked up over our sports teams.

I’ve had a lot of people on Twitter ask if they can buy a print of this cartoon. The answer is yes. Just put “12 Months of Boston” in the info field. I would’ve done something that gives the proceeds directly to The One Fund Boston, but that’s a lot of paperwork. You’ll just have to take my word for it that I’ll donate 20% of the sale of each print ($5) to the fund.

Big Fat Book Club

Lately I’ve only been able to read in what little free time I have between putting down the Wacom and passing out (either from plain-old sleepiness or with an assist from drinking) at night. Although I’m perpetually behind on my reading, there’s some great new stuff that’s been keeping me up WAY past my bedtime, and probably contributing to my increasing crankiness of late.

First up is Boston Phoenix writer and fellow Jamaica Plainer Chris Faraone’s 99 Nights with the 99 Percent: Dispatches from the First Three Months of the Occupy Revolution. It chronicles his impressive coverage of last fall’s Occupy movement. Starting with Occupy Boston’s takeover of Dewey Square, he crisscrossed the country reporting on Occupations as quickly as they sprung up. He was one of the few journalists who actually attended general assemblies and dug deep into the heart of the movement, unlike most in the media who either reported on drum-circle goofballs, or lamented that Occupy didn’t have any demands. (SURPRISE: If you talked to them, they did!) Here’s hoping the movement emerges from its winter hibernation, and when it does, Chris’s reports will be the first I’ll read.

Next is one of the alt-weekly cartoonists who inspired me to pursue this shitty career, Derf, whose latest book is My Friend Dahmer. A longer version of his earlier comic of the same name, it’s a graphic novel about Derf’s teen years spent with the serial killer. It’s funny and poignant, but not in a Lifetime movie kind of way. Obviously Dahmer was a huge fucking weirdo, but Derf draws a portrait of the kind of fuck-up we all knew (or were) in high school. It is my great shame that I have an unsigned copy of the original My Friend Dahmer comic. I met Derf once in Columbus, Ohio at SPACE, in 2003 or 2004, but forgot to schlep my copy out to the midwest for him to sign. He will not remember this meeting, as I knew my comics were super-shitty at that point in my career, so I just acted like a fan when I bought my signed The City collection.

Lastly but not leastly, David Rees, of Get Your War On fame, will release a primer on his latest passion project, Artisanal Pencil Sharpening next month. I went digital a couple years ago, but this thoughtful treatise has me rethinking that decision. One cannot “sharpen” a stylus, and therefore the cartoons I draw with it will never be as sharp as those drawn with a skillfully sharpened pencil. I’ve yet to see a live demonstration, but hopefully us rubes in Boston will be treated to one in good time.

Campaign Comeback Advice for Mitt Romney

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Mitt’s such a tool, even the GOP base recognizes it and is having a severely difficult time accepting him as their party’s nominee. Of course, as a sensible human being, a tool like Romney is WAY more preferable than Gingrich or Santorum, but they’re all competing for the votes of ignorant, hateful assholes, so sensibility doesn’t factor in at all.

Besides his soulless, unrelatable rich-douche persona, the worst thing about the Romney campaign is that they have to run away from Massachusetts and its extremely popular health care reform because it’s essentially the same thing as President Obama’s. As a freelancer, I couldn’t afford health insurance until Romney’s reforms created a public option for low-income Massachusites (No one says ‘Bay Staters,’ and Massholes imply we’re all an SNL sketch.), so I’m a fan. Anyone who’s against it or ObamaCare either works for the health industry or is a raging moron.

On a lighter note, the sweater tube top in this cartoon is part of my lifelong fascination with tube tops as a thing people actually wore/wear. Even as a towheaded toddler in the early eighties, I knew they were wrong. Here’s a cartoon I did for my high school yearbook, followed by the Bert Fershners comedy sketch that inspired it.

An ALF reference! And my handwriting! I was the coolest.

Thank you, mid ’90’s Comedy Central.

I urge everyone who owns a copy of the Brockton High School 1997 Yearbook to hang onto that shit and write letters to editors who help keep me employed, thereby increasing the value of your yearbook when your kids auction it off on eBay after you die.

Your Guide to Townie Bars

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Hey, here’s a cartoon I did for the Phoenix. Look at it, if you don’t mind my aggressively-local sense of humor.

I’m an expert at this subject, but I will only share the location of my favorite townie bars with trusted individuals. All dives in my neighborhood are under constant threat of turning into hipster bars, so their locations have to be protected.

My #OccupyBoston Field Trip

Since the Occupy Wall Street thing has gained some traction, similar events have popped up across the country, including Boston. The Boston one started on Friday, and has been growing all weekend. I had nothing going on yesterday, so I put on some pants and checked it out.

The site’s in Dewey Square, on the Greenway, right across the street from Boston’s Federal Reserve. And unlike what I’ve seen and read about what’s going on in NYC, the police presence is minimal.

Most folks who weren’t in meetings or painting signs were standing across from South Station along Atlantic Ave., holding signs and sloganeering to passing traffic. The most enthusiastic honks came from taxis and truckers, and this spot is also where essential supplies such as pizza and coffee are dropped off.

I forgot to count all the tents, but I was glad to see that most people who are in it for the long-haul used proper camping techniques and utilized ground cloths and tarps. It’s been pretty rainy and miserable here, so pallets and cardboard are serving as make-shift walkways to keep things from getting too gross. There was one Ron Paul-themed tent, and it was kind of adorable, until you really think about the entirety of Ron Paul’s platform.

Don’t let the sloppy rigging of the media tent fool you; things are organized on the inside. It actually kinda looked like a Best Buy with all the monitors and computing power going on in there. I guess I’m technically a member of the media and could’ve gone in, but the Greenway has free wifi, and I don’t like talking to strangers outside of bar-type situations, so I pretty much kept to myself, except saying “no” to the dude who asked me if I had any rolling papers. Sorry, Tommy Chong!

For everyone saying the #Occupy protests have no agenda or demands; I found three signs in one spot that sum up the whole thing pretty succinctly. I’ve been saying similar things for years, so it’s sincerely heartening to see a bonafide movement coalesce around the same issues. I’ll keep visiting for as long as it’s going on, and maybe I’ll actually talk to some people next time.

Candidate Mitt

I’m not a big fan of 2012 election commentary this early, but Mitt Romney’s a tool. The guy will say and do anything to grub for votes, somehow unaware that there’s tons of video of him saying fairly reasonable things to get elected by the sane residents of Massachusetts (ie: Not Scott Brown’s or Stephen Lynch’s base.).

And since most of New Hampshire’s population lives right on the Massachusetts border, I’m going to be bombarded with ads for this shithead until the primary. I’d rather watch Bob’s Discount Furniture ads on a constant loop.

Clothing Drive

My girlfriend’s roommate and my friend Eli had the misfortune of that awful fire destroying all of his belongings, save for his cat Bandit, a soggy photo album, and this artfully charred t-shirt. He didn’t have renter’s insurance, so he’s literally left with only the shirt on his back.

If you’ve got something in his size you can spare, particularly business attire, let me know and I’ll send you the shipping details. His sizes are:

Pants – 36×30
Suit – 42R
Shirts – XL
Dress Shirts – 17 34/35
Shoes 10 – 10 1/2 (depending on the brand)

If you’re in or near JP or Davis Square, I can probably manage to pick stuff up and save you some shipping.

Thanks so much! I’ll be sure to get back to goofing on teabaggers and Al Gore’s wang shortly!

UPDATE: FOUND Cat, Jamaica Plain

Have you seen me?

UPDATE Wednesday, July 14th: We went back to the place today to try and salvage a few more things and Nico was there ALIVE! She was probably hiding in a box-spring yesterday. The vet gave her a clean bill of health and her appetite is huge. Thanks to everyone who sent in tips and well-wishes.

There was a huge, four-alarm fire at my girlfriend’s apartment today. All of the tenants are fine, and three four cats were reunited with their owners.

Unfortunately, one cat died and another is still missing. If you live in Jamaica Plain near South Street and Boynton, keep an eye out for Nico. Her best bud Olive got out with minor burns, so we’re hoping Nico’s out there on the not-so-mean streets of JP.

Shoot me an email if you’ve seen her!

The Midnight Ride of Conan O’Brien

Coco’s coming to the Wang Theatre in Boston this weekend, and what better way to celebrate than with a dick joke?

I’ll be at Friday’s show, after lubricating my laugh-hole at The Tam.

And pedantic perverts needn’t bother correcting my spelling of “coming.” Even if I wasn’t going for the double entendre, spelling come with a u is a stylistic choice made by porno graphic designers who are trying to save valuable magazine and DVD cover real estate for close-ups of va-ding-dong-ginas.