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Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Say your prayers

The realm of the sacred has gone the route of the bison among us. No animal that knows the living wonder of piety would have ever let this occur. Praises be.

A jaguar warrior saying his prayers, of course.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Scraping the bottom of the barrell

When trying to create one should always keep in mind that creation works best when it’s not trying.

So says Peter Picklebarrell.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

MIsery loves…

It’s not obligation that makes life so miserable, it’s living obligatorily.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Alligator milk

It appears that Thursday City has finally infiltrated the popular imagination and our alligator milk industry has been vindicated. Alligator milk farming is a big business in Thursday City. But it has long been ignored in the American media, apparently due to negative perceptions amongst the populace. Because of this ignorance alligator milk continues to mainly profit as an export, going to foreign countries like Vermont and Papua New Guinea.

Brother Cucumber, as everyone knows, is an alligator milk farmer outside of town, and today he found this image from an editorial cartoonist named Dick Locher. Compare it to the image of Brother Cucumber below from “the Magic Number,” which was published in 2007.

Dick Locher
Chicago Tribune
Nov 14, 2008

How sweet it is!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

the Gordian viper pit

While dancing through the vast and timeless Dominion of the Spirit Fred fell. We all do it.


But in the Dominion of the Spirit a misstep can send one hurtling through the time-space continuum centuries or worlds away from where one began. It is for this reason, and untold others, that most of us instinctively shun the Dominion of the Spirit.

And now it will take a master stroke to free himself. Does he have it in him? Who among us can claim the power? Can you?

Imagine the scenes of beauty he has witnessed. The towering acts of sublimity. Perhaps in his fall he witnessed the Great Alexander undo the un-undoable. Or perhaps he saw the prophet Daniel pacify a den of lions. Perhaps he stood by the side of the pharaoh as the Great Sphinx was christened thousands of years before Christ. Perhaps he witnessed worlds give birth to intelligent life and then saw that life destroy itself millennia later. Perhaps he saw Earth and Mars vie for the honor of birthing life in this galaxy and Mars won that time. If he saw these things I hope he learned from them. A swift stroke from Alexander. An inspired word from Daniel. An answer to a great riddle. A communion with the transcendent powers of becoming. I hope he learned these things. He will need them.

Because now it will take a master stroke to free himself.

Does he have it in him?

Who among us can claim the power?

Can you?

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Productive pow-wow

Last week friend of Thursday City Kristin “Little Bear” Lindner left the city. She went to a strange place named Chicago, a land of sausages and sports. Apparently there are also comics lovers there. One in particular, Sarah Becan, hereafter referred to as the Princess of Power, knows Little Bear. While they were talking about and loving comics Little Bear presented a peace offering to the Princess of Power in the form of one copy of my book “the Moth or the Flame.” The Princess of Power enjoyed it so much that she promised Little Bear safe passage amongst her people and also wrote a fine review of my book on her website.

Go check it out!

Assistant TO the regional manager

Well, the Gooch often comes over to my side while I am working and stares at me for minutes on end. We finally discussed the issue and it turns out he has been asking for a promotion. So I gave him a new chair and a title. The new working situation seems to be going quite well so far. He hasn’t got his own office yet, but office morale has noticeably lifted.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Vigil of the night sigil

The guardian angel Artemio Lopostrix protects all sleepers and dreamers under his eternally vigilant gaze. Wielding the Flame of Truth in his right hand and the Sword of Protection in his left virtually all monsters and demons are no match for his divine might.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Thunderclouded valleys

Braddock, Pennsylvania? What the hell is in Braddock, Pennsylvania you ask? Well, I don’t know in general. I have never been there. But I do know one thing specifically. Are you interested to know? Well, lean closer and I will clue you in on a secret weapon that resides in Braddock, Pennsylvania and nowhere else. There resides a group of radical and enthusiastic artists that go by the collective name Transformazium. Through various and sundry networks of friends and collaborators I happen to know a couple of these Transformaziumites. One in particular, Leslie, invited me a couple months ago to participate in a fundraising event they were planning to take place in New York. I said okay, because Leslie is a stand up kind of lady.

Well, when she came to pick up the pieces I was donating for the big show we, as is our wont, fell into broad conversations about art and future plans. In the course of the conversation Leslie asked if I would ever consider doing a wall piece or mural in Braddock. Hell yes, I would. I explained that the conspicuous lack of large scale public art in my oeuvre had nothing to do with lack of interest or ability and everything to do with lack of legal opportunity. For the kind of work I would want to do I would need ample time and no paranoia. So, we discussed the possibility of a future project together.

Well, two days later I got an invite to do a piece in conjunction with the group show that opened last weekend. The building is Monster Island in Williamsburg, and the gallery that is hosting the show is Secret Project Robot. This building is the same place where Kayrock resides, the printers that printed my wedding invitations (see the blog archives). As a matter of fact Kayrock’s air conditioner was dripping on me 53% of my working time providing me with a delightful obstacle to completing a kind of piece I have never even done before! Joy!

The show closes officially this Saturday 18Oct08, with a dance party at 10pm, so if you live in the tri-state area come on out! My piece is permanent and will be there until the building is destroyed or a hater besmirches it or the residents of Monster Island decide to commission another artist to go over it. The title of the piece is Friedrich Blitzkrieg in the thunderclouded valley of the deathless gods, check it out:

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

On the road again

When I fly my special pens bleed their black inky innards all over themselves. I assume this is caused by the change in air pressure. Apparently Austria is a special nation-sized pressure bubble, because the entire time we were there my pens were bleeding profusely. It would make sense if Austria were a special nation-sized pressure bubble, because the entire country is apparently the model for all snow globes. Not to be held subject to a tool or be outdone by a special nation-sized pressure bubble I had to resort to using my old-school 4-color Bic pens. Ed Fella is the unchallenged master of the 4-color Bic, but I am not going to let that fact slow me down. When I have to draw I have to draw. So, here are some of the images I drew in our travel guide while on planes and trains inside the snow globe that is Austria.

Billy James and Jukie the One-eyed Flying Fighting Fish

Basho on the left. Karl on the right.


Monday, October 6, 2008

Culture Shock

3,408 years ago a man laid down underneath the head of the Great Sphinx at Giza. The sun god was at its apex, blazing heat down onto the lone figure and the colossal stone monument-to-mystery. At that time the Great Sphinx was buried in sand up to its powerful shoulders. The man searched for respite from the sun god in the Great Sphinx’s shadow. As he slept beneath the chin of the stone god he was visited by a living god. Hamarkhis-Khopri-Ra-Tum appeared to the young man. “You will become a great man,” he said, “Hear my words and heed them, and you will be made great.” The young man was stunned silent by pious awe—piety and awe are profound modes of life that modern men are no longer capable of, but they were once powerful forces nonetheless. As he gazed in silence Hamarkhis-Khopri-Ra-Tum spoke once more, “Reveal my earthly form to this waning civilization. Restore my majestic glory on earth. Do this and you will taste of immortality.” When the young man awoke from the dream he was sweating and shivering, but he was neither hot nor feverish. He had been given a sacred vision, and he knew his transcendent responsibility.

The young man was the future Pharaoh Thothmos IV. 3,400 years ago he excavated and restored the Great Sphinx, which had been buried in drifting sands after more than 1,000 years of standing watch over the Egyptian tombs called the Great Pyramids. That’s right. The Great Sphinx is over 4,400 years old. Four thousand four hundred years this mythic masterpiece of human spirit has endured. Nowadays we call it a “marvel of human ingenuity,” but that is because we moderns are alien to awe and piety. For us the sacred is just an idea, it is not a value to live one’s life in accordance with. For us such a masterpiece is a marvel of human “ingenuity” and this is why we can’t comprehend its construction. It was not mere inventiveness that made this creature possible. The Great Sphinx could only have been made by a culture in whom the infinite and omnipotent power of spirit moved. A culture quickened and galvanized by a true mythic ethos. A culture for whom ethos was not merely a word, but a living power.

In our day we pride ourselves on having abolished slavery. But I wonder how much different the life of a slave then would have been to the life of a blue collar worker now? We trudge, zombie-like, to our miserable jobs every day searching desperately for any form of distraction to keep us from facing the abysmal truth of our pathetic and hopeless existence. The life of an Egyptian slave must have also been quite painful. But I wonder what it would have felt like to know that you were working on a monument that was truly powerful? A monument that was truly meaningful? A monument that was truly sublime? A monument that was truly awesome? They had to know. There was no escaping the monumentality of that job. If Egyptian slave, Abdul, met modern slave, Bill, what would they say? Abdul would point to an image of the Great Sphinx and say “I helped make that.” Bill would point to a toxin filled burger and say “I put that in a box.”

Friday, September 26, 2008

Cultural Heritage

The Vienna Secession was the first movement that I consciously identified with. I remember seeing Schiele’s drawings in college and thinking “Man, that putrid green and pus colored prostitute is soooooo hot. And look at those tortured lines.” But that was art. And then when I began to study design I was also set on fire by the secessionists’ astoundingly fresh and vigorous design work. Klimt, Moser, Kokoschka, et al were just amazingly gifted designers. Their poster work was one of the main inspirations for the entire 60s psychedelic look in America. Not to take anything away from Victor Moscoso or Wes Wilson (everyone has their artistic heritage), but without the Secession and Jugendstijl there is no psychedelic poster.

And then a few years ago my friend, last-of-the-sages Kenneth Smith, introduced me to the Viennese artist Ernst Fuchs. If the Secession was the first conscious influence in my artistic self-culture then Fuchs may be most profound. For those that have ears let them hear, and eyes, let them see. For Ernst Fuchs is the creator of some of the most powerfully spiritual and visionary art since the likes of Bosch, Grünewald, Blake and the few others like them. His work is invested with a living energy that simply cannot be denied by anyone with open orifices and an unshriveled mind.

So, you can imagine my delight when Mary and I traveled to Vienna for our honeymoon. I was able to visit the Olbrich designed Secession building and see Klimt’s Beethoven frieze. And I was euphoric at Professor Fuchs’ museum. Designed by Otto Wagner and refurbished and embellished by Fuchs himself the place was simply astounding. Professor Fuchs’ paintings virtually glow in person and to be in a room in which every piece was painted specifically for that spot was just awe inspiring. Next time you are in Vienna go check these places out. Until then I have some photos.

The Secession

The Fuchs Museum

One of the rooms in the museum (all the furniture is also designed by Professor Fuchs)

Professor Fuchs contemplating my sketchbook (Imagine my delight when I was told he happened to be in town on business. He lives in France these days.)

Inside the temple designed by Fuchs, next to the museum

Friday, September 5, 2008

Re-tying the Gordian knot

So far married life is absolutely wonderful! Mary and I tied the Gordian knot on Saturday 23 August 2008. The ceremony was typical of us, as Elliott said “that was the most organic wedding I have ever attended.” We will be posting all sorts of images and updates soon on our wedding blog, but I just wanted to post the invitation here, for all of you who haven’t seen it.

We are in Vienna right now having a delightful honeymoon and a well earned rest. We have slept like bears. The two weeks before the wedding and the week and a half after were incredibly hectic. It was like putting one’s head into a bee hive for 3 weeks, and getting stung just enough to remind you that you could be swarmed at any moment. But the honey was sweet. Finally after over 16 hours of travel, from car to plane to train to train to car, we arrived worn out and hungry, and now these bears are hibernating in Vienna. More on that later.

For the invitation we made a 2-color silkscreened poster on Stonehenge grey paper. It was printed by Kayrock in Brooklyn and they did a great job. I then spent three nights lovingly rolling posters, wrapping them with a purple belly band containing additional info, and binding it with a thick gross grain black ribbon and an aqua-green wax seal—sealed with a kiss, and finally placed into a cardboard poster tube with fluorescent address labels and white instruction stickers to hold down the thick ribbon on the outside.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Dystopian Sci-fi

I had been thinking a lot about dystopian science-fiction at the time. I wasn’t actually reading any. Nor had I read any before. But I had read a bit about it. Or at least I knew people who had. At any rate I was thinking a lot about it. Will the future really be dominated by machines hell bent on the destruction of humanity? Will that be any worse than what we are already doing to ourselves? Are electrically powered human minds really different than a machine mind? Can a machine’s mind be referred to as a mind in truth? Can a machine think? Can humans think for that matter?

And then Pircoset appeared to me. He claimed to be a divine manifestation of the chemical realms. He said dystopian literature got it all wrong. No. The literature didn’t get it wrong. Men got it wrong. He said the future dystopian science-fiction predicted was not the future. It was the present. He said machines already dominated man. He said the present is machine. The future will be chemical.

When I pressed him he evaded. He said figure it out for yourself.

He had not read any dystopian science-fiction either. But he said the divine has no use for sci-fi. The divine has no use for use for that matter.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Thursday City Classifieds

Name: Micky Wolfe
Age: Indeterminate
Occupation: Being divine
Likes: Abysses, gristle, duck fat, intense heat, passionate kissers, Beethoven, dancing, bubble baths and long walks on the beach
Dislikes: Shallows, grains, artichokes, feebleness, typography, blandness, wallflowers, disco music and cotton candy
Who I would like to meet: Girls who appreciate hairy men, outgoing “juicy” types, animal lovers (I own a dog), carnivores, Christians, athletes and “natural” women

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Parisian mysteries

Timothy, Cathy and I arrived in Paris on Sunday morning excited and stuporous. We would leave exhausted and stuporous, but that comes later. I flew to the City of Light to continue work on “the Saranay Motel” with my man Elliott “Catfish” Earls, who wouldn’t arrive for another few hours. After depositing our luggage and showering we took a walk to the Centre Pompidou. I had not visited Paris in almost eight years and it felt good to know that I still had a sense of its layout. Cathy then took us to visit a designer friend named Matali who lives in Belleville (like the triplets). We ate a delicious lunch with Matali, her husband Francis, and her twin sister Dominique. Still in a stupor I then went alone to the Museum of Gustave Moreau, one of my favorite painters. Afterward I walked back to the hotel, which unearthed my inability to comprehend the scale of my map. I thought it would be a ten minute walk or so and it ended up being closer to thirty.

In the evening we all went to dinner at a nice little hidden spot in Marais, and this is where things get intricate so pay attention. At dinner were Gary Wasserman, W.B. Finney, Elliott, Cathy, Timothy, and I. Gary is a steel magnate and the co-producer of “the Saranay Motel.” He and Elliott met a few years ago at a Cranbrook event and have been involved with one another ever since. W.B. is the current patriarch of the illustrious Finney family of Thursday City. He is a major art collector and founded the Wanda B. Finney Academy of Art and WBF Art Museum. Cathy is the director of the WBF, as it is known. Timothy is the WBF’s Art Director. He is also a former student of Elliott’s. Gary began contributing to the WBF because he has offices in Thursday City and was impressed by the collection.

Why were we all in Paris?

Gary and Elliott proposed for Elliott to do a performance piece at the WBF in conjunction with the soon to be completed “the Saranay Motel.” The WBF agreed. Well, in the course of the negotiations the WBF was also in the process of acquiring Napoleon’s throne from the Louvre’s Musée des Arts Décoratifs (Museum of Decorative Arts), and when Elliott got wind of this a light bulb went off. What if we filmed a scene on Napoleon’s throne? Of course. In order to make this happen, though he no longer has any executive power at the WBF, W.B.’s connections were needed. Through him Cathy and Gary negotiated some time in the museum’s major summer exhibition with Napoleon’s throne. And that is why we were in Paris.

Dinner was delicious and the conversation delightful. I fell in love with W.B., who had just arrived from Budapest, as he was charming, erudite, generous, and truly eccentric. Gary was gracious and wry as always. Cathy was ebullient, despite her jet lag. Timothy was observant. Elliott and I were provocative, as we are wont to be. We were off to an auspicious beginning.

Monday was Bastille Day. Gary had organized a party at his office on the Champs Élysées. The parade was to start at half past nine, so Cathy woke everyone up around seven in the AM to get there and avoid the crowd. Of course I didn’t get up. I drug myself out of bed around nine and shaggily stumbled down to the hotel cafe for breakfast. To my surprise Elliott, W.B., and Timothy were still there ruminating.

I scarfed down some hard boiled eggs, fruit, two croissant, and juice while W.B. talked of the oft illustrious, oft illicit, but always fascinating history of the Finney family. Once on the street the crowds were indeed dense, and the police lines disallowed a direct route to Gary’s office. But this proved fortuitous as it gave W.B. the opportunity to be tour guide—this is the hotel the Nazis used as their Parisian headquarters during the occupation, this is the hotel the Empress used to frequent, this is the best chocolatier, this is the oldest cake maker, this place makes the best luggage, etc. Once we finally arrived the crowds were lining the Champs Élysées awaiting the festivities to begin. Gary’s office, in the same building as the Disney Store, was on the third floor overlooking the avenue. We had a splendid view from the balcony. We got to see Sarkozy riding slowly down the avenue in a military vehicle waving to the crowd, but unfortunately Carla was not on his arm. Something that shocked us Americans was that he was in an open vehicle with no fiberglass shields or head protection. Of course from our vantage we could see the security positioned on the roof tops and even on top of the Arc de Triomphe, but it was still surprising that he had no immediate protection. The next bit of excitement, half an hour later, was the jets in formation. There were at least ten waves of them. But overall the parade consisted of a lot of waiting, incredibly boring marching, and sickening diesel fumes from the tanks. Quite a lot of yawn inducing militarism, especially considering France hasn’t had a really impressive military since around the time the Bastille was stormed in the first place. They should definitely stick with the arts where they much more impressively excel.

Tuesday was film time. Elliott, Timothy, and I got to the museum early to scout out the location and determine what we would need. We had been worried that the throne would not be impressive enough and that the light would be horrible, requiring us to orchestrate acquisition and installation of a light package in a city we have no working knowledge of—potentially disastrous. Our entourage had expanded to nearly fifteen people since Bastille Day, but the three of us were the only ones with any notion of the wearying amount of preparation and labor it takes to get even a minor scene to work, the rest were just along to watch the silly monkeys at play. Fortunately the throne was beautiful, the unexpected rug even more so, and the light was adequate. So we scheduled shooting to start at half past five in the PM and went off to find a lavalier mic to nullify the echo chamber that was the museum. The one snag so far.

Of course this is where the story turns into a slapstick comedy. Elliott and I are furiously efficient when we are actually creating together. At peak performance his feverish creativity harmonizes with my lucid creativity and we blaze. But there are times, and this was one of them, when we notoriously can’t manage to distinguish our heads from our asses. I always want to blame Elliott for these times, but in truth that is like blaming alcohol for bad behavior—alcohol can’t make you do something you can’t do. So queue up the rapid silent film piano music and watch in delight as Elliott and I stumble around in circles all over Paris looking for a microphone. One of us wants to go this way, one the other. One Parisian points us down that street, the next back down this. A security guard points us to the right, a street vendor to the left. A Starbucks every four blocks gives us wireless to touch the iPod for directions, but the iPod runs out of juice after two dead ends. The store we were looking for doesn’t have any, and the next store is too expensive. After stopping to pick up Timothy we finally end up near the Moulin Rouge on a street full of music stores that are all closed for lunch. Of course. So we decide for lunch as well. Once at the store, which has exactly what we need, we decide it is too expensive still and we will use the built-in mic on the camera, which is just as suitable and was there from the start. So, back to where we began.

We arrived at the museum ready to do what we came for. After the requisite introductions and laying down of the rules we finally got to work. There was a lot of chatter from the peanut gallery, but we managed to get everyone out of the shots without too much trouble. We convinced W.B. the day before to take part in the film as he is such a character. So, Elliott and W.B. were in costume and acting while I ran the camera. Timothy was behind me documenting the process. And Dan from Detroit was behind him documenting the documentation. The rest of the “crew” chatted and networked while stealing peeks when possible.

We were finally doing what we came for and everything was running smoothly. W.B. and Elliott were hamming it up. And I was capturing everything as stop motion first—video would come next. W.B. was commenting on Elliott’s fake teeth when suddenly the camera just stopped working. I pressed the button, but nothing happened.

“Elliott, there’s something wrong with the camera.”

“What? No there isn’t—let me see it.”

There was something wrong with the camera.

We began trying to correct the problem, and W.B. went to use the rest room in the meantime. We were engrossed in the technicalities when suddenly W.B. roared “How dare he!!!!???” and stormed out of the room with Cathy and Gary hot on his heels. What was that all about? We had no idea and continued trying to rectify the camera situation. A few minutes later Gary came back in and asked us what we did to W.B… Huh!? What we did to W.B.? We did nothing to W.B. But apparently he was incensed at our insensitivity and vulgarity. Without warning hearts were in throats and stomachs were in knots. What did we do? I ran outside to find W.B. and discuss the problem. By the time I got to him and Cathy they were at the hotel. W.B. had credit card in hand and was clearly checking out. He was also screaming at Cathy. I stepped forward to say something, but there was no chance. W.B. was absolutely livid! He was raving about how he owed us nothing and he didn’t want anyone near him. Cathy was calmly trying to reason with him and pleading for him to calm down, but he was having none of it. He pressed the button for the elevator. As the door opened he shouted once again “Don’t come near me!!!! I don’t want to speak to anyone!!!! I owe them nothing!!!!!!! NOTHING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! And the elevator closed. I was in shock.

I walked back to the museum dejected, baffled, and utterly astounded. What had happened? Everything had been going so well, and suddenly we had been struck by a lightning bolt from a cloudless sky. When I got back to the museum Elliott and the gang were trying to figure out what had just occurred. Then we all went back to the hotel (sans W.B.) and spent an hour trying to figure out what happened. Then Gary took us to his favorite restaurant, Jean George’s Market, and we spent a few hundred dollars trying to figure out what happened. But we never figured out what happened. The only person that knew what happened was gone. The only machine that knew what happened broke down from the burden of the knowledge.

The rest of the week was actually quite productive. We filmed a lot of material. We ate a lot of good food. We had a lot of good arguments. And we gained new insights into character and existence. But we still don’t grasp the cause.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Transmissions from outer space

I returned from Paris on Friday completely exhausted from a dramatic week. I was absolutely useless for the first two days and am now trying to catch up with work, communications, wedding planning, pet sitting, reading, creation, etc. I am working on a long (by blog standards) illustrated story of the Paris trip, which will hopefully be posted this weekend, but for now an image from the sketchbook.

This is Kavorkian.

Comics requires one to be very rigorous. Drawing the same characters over and over necessitates an effort of sustained concentration and strictness in thinking that can become suffocating at times. I am continuously developing methods for more efflorescent forms of creativity, which will still fit with the graphic language I am developing in my comics. I am also consistently striving to harmonize left and right brained modes (amongst other more arcane modes) in all the work, but this kind of piece is unquestionably more right brained. I begin with a more or less hazy image or feeling and just start drawing, improvising as I go, but with very deliberate strokes causing the final image to appear planned.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Thoughts on Democracy

The Wolfsonian Museum, in Miami, approached me to design a poster for their show “Thoughts on Democracy.” They asked the designers involved to take 4 classic Norman Rockwell posters and reinterpret them for today. The show opened last week and will be up until late Fall.

The New York Times had a big review of the show, in which Elliott’s poster was featured prominently—mine unfortunately received no mention, but I am a “no name” so…

Read the online Times article here: New York Times.

And check the Wolfsonian propaganda here: Thoughts on Democracy

The show is getting reviewed pretty well and it is exciting to be a part of it. I will update more fully soon, but I am flying to Paris in 3 hours so I gotta go!

Here is my poster:

Monday, June 30, 2008

Truly a beautiful game

One to none doesn’t sound as beautiful as it was.

In the first half the elfin El Niño made the world class move we all wanted to see. The Spanish held the side.

Federico Tornado of Thursday City recreates a scene from the game.

In the second half both teams puffed up their chests and began trading blows like true Titans. Though no goals were scored there was a controlled and determined aggression displayed throughout the second half. One could feel the build up like the earth rumbling in preparation for a volcanic belch. And though it’s the rare volcano that is as sensationally explosive as we imagine them to be in our musings the breathtaking—gasp inducing—beauty of even the slightest of such natural wonders is not to be denied. If the Spanish are to be compared to a natural wonder it must be to some tentacled aquatic creature. They flowed in a truly organized fashion combining the ethereal beauty of the oceanic dynamo with its sublime power. The Germans roared back with a characteristic bruteness, which could only be hated or despised by the fragile things. The Germans at their best have virtually none of the graceful force the Spanish showed, but one has shut off one’s most ancient sense organs if a twinge of ancestral terror is not felt at seeing those brute giants come storming down the field, reminiscent of their Gothic forefathers entering the fray with a guttural war-cry.

Is El Niño not patently molded by the gods to be an electrifying footballer? He played a focused and bellicose game from the get-go. Is Torsten Frings not the epitome of the long haired Goth, combining rugged power with surprising agility? And is Christoph Metzelder not carved out of black forest fir? But just as the truth obstinately remains obscure behind the war of opposing views the hidden gem for the Spaniards has to be Keeper Casillas. Mr. Iker was not tested often, but he played like a lightning cloud, striking with terrible might. From punching crosses all the way back to midfield to stretching like one of the Great Cats to bring down a dangerous pass he played like an impenetrable force. If he continues to play that way he will go down as a truly great keeper.

The two teams for the better part of 90 minutes played like heroes, which, when all said and done, is what we actually want from them. One could feel the power of the human spirit pulsing through the match. I couldn’t help but marvel at the absurd heights to which we have taken our play. It makes me understand why Gods of the past have, at our best moments, been jealous of humanity. The Natural and the Divine take it as a birthright to attempt the absurd, it explains the sardonic laughter of the Gods. But at our heights—and our depths—humanity has the potential to also orchestrate such profound paradox as to challenge the divinely absurd while also tasting of fiercely ripe mortality.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Op-Ed: University backs professor in “civil liberties” case

An excerpt from today’s Thursday City Chronicler:

By now everyone is familiar with the story of the events that took place last week at the Thursday City University philosophy department’s auditorium. But if you aren’t, a quick recap: During the question and answer portion of a panel discussion in Hegel Hall an attendee by the name of Friedrich Blitzkrieg asked the moderator, tenured professor of philosophy Jeremiah Squiggle, what Squiggle deemed an inappropriate question. When he continued his aggressive behavior Squiggle had Mr. Blitzkrieg escorted out of the auditorium by security and subsequently banned from all future University events. When informed of this decision several outraged students, most certainly shadow proxies of Mr. Blitzkrieg, contacted the Thursday City chapter of the radical left-wing ACLU and began a picket of the university.

We have unerringly voiced our opinion on the entire sordid affair, but the university issued a statement today and we think it merits consideration:
“Thursday City University prides itself on playing host to vigorous debate on the most controversial topics. Our myriad institutional curricula and public events aim to pique interaction and inspire critical discourse. That being said the University does not endorse nor tolerate hate speech in its class environment nor its public forums. The University unequivocally supports Professor Squiggle in his decision to eject and ban the offender at last week’s debate ‘The Quandary of the Spirit in Contemporary Pop-Culture,’ and will not be swayed by the aggressive tactics of the Thursday City ACLU.”

Here here! We at the Thursday City Chronicler could not be prouder of the courage our local university has shown in the face of that farcical organization’s frivolous attacks and vicious smear campaign.

And an artist’s rendition of the event based on audio tape from the Philosophy department at TCU:

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Technicolor dreams

This is Jamie Butler. She appeared to me in a dream the other night swathed in vivid technicolor beauty. She informed me that I am moving too fast, and that Freud’s interpretations of dream symbols were, in her words, hogwash. When I asked her what she meant she replied, “Figure it out for yourself, mister.”

I am trying to slow down.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

The invisible knock of the bad infinity

I opened the door. I opened the door and there wasn’t even a knock. I opened the door. In walked Mr. Gravity. Mr. Gravity walked in, and my world spun out of control. He opened the door to the infinite. But not the good infinite of love and virtue and excellence and greatness. He opened the door to the bad infinite of insatiable ego and vicious accretion and crippled meanness. He opened the door of the bad infinite and flung my soul right in.

How can this be? How can there be more than one infinite? How can this be? How can I let him in without even the common courtesy of a sympathy knock? Aren’t we consensual adults? Are we consensual adults?

Without even realizing I gave my consent—consent by introjection—I found myself swimming in the vertiginous ocean of bad infinity. Mr. Gravity held me under like a school yard bully giving me a swirlie, a bogwash, a dunnyflush. Before I knew what hit me I was drowning in the Boggy Swamp of Swampy Bogginess. I imagine I could hear the distant sound of a gurgling Gracey Kallifracks wail. It was all over.

But in truth I was oblivious—even of my despair. My predicament was beyond me. Rather my predicament was me. I was, I am, beyond me. Even when lost I am searching for myself. And I did not know I was lost until I was found, but once found all may be lost. Is it worth the risk?

It was the call of the lord that did it. The divine. But the good divine. The bad divine, Mr. Gravity, disappeared. I was lifted. I didn't know I had been down until I was up.

And that is the true horror. The true horror is knowing that what I do not know will be my down fall. The true horror is knowing that the up going is the same as the down going and vice versa.

What I do not know will be my down fall. But I do not know what I do not know. And knowing that is the Judas’ kiss that will seal my fate for a paltry 30 pieces of silver.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

General Updates

I am hard at play on my next book entitled “Severed Limbs.” I am a couple/few dozen pages into it and it looks to be finished one day.

This weekend I am participating in Open Studios in my building. A bunch of the artists here are opening up their studios (as the name would imply) in conjunction with a big arts thingamajig that BWAC does each year. We’ll see how that goes.

Also this weekend is the MoCCA Festival, in which dozens of really good cartoonists and publishers purvey their wares. Unfortunately I was too late to procure a table for “the Moth or the Flame” this year, so hopefully next time. I am angling to make it out, but with Open Studios, Big Brown making a run for the Triple Crown at the Belmont, and various and sundry other odds and ends, who knows if I actually will? God?

I am also working on a collaboration book of poetry, philosophy, polemical dialectic, cartoons, and comics with the amazing Martijn Benders, which we plan to complete within the next two years or so. You can read some of the stuff in germinative form on Martijn’s blog Loewak, which I also contribute to. As for the drawings they will remain largely a secret until the book is complete.

The official website for the city of Thursday City is almost done (a long time coming). I will post a link when it is complete. Postmaster General Benjamin Santiago predicts an arrival date sometime next week, but we all know how reliable the Thursday City Post Office is. We will see.

And finally please don’t forget to peruse the goods at One of the new items to check out is the Lightning Lump stuffed animal I am producing on demand in collaboration with Kristin Little Bear Lindner. I have received an amazing initial response to “the Moth or the Flame,” but in order to build this snowball into an avalanche I need to actually receive some financial remuneration for my years of toiling away in obscurity. And let’s face it, you could use some mythic power in your life.

That’s all for this transmission from the city of Thursday City. I will leave you with a sneak peek of a page from the upcoming “Severed Limbs.”

Potemkin glowers from on high:

Thursday, May 29, 2008

The Longest Day Festival

Eli and Whitman rumbled down the mountain like distant thunder rolling in for a summer afternoon storm. Every year on the summer solstice, as the life giving sun sits high on its northern throne, Thursday City holds the Longest Day Festival. The highlight of the festival is the popcorn shrimp eating contest followed by the Pick-Off. The Pick-Off is a musical contest in which bands compete in any genre of instrumental music for Thursday City supremacy. There are three expert judges, honored guests and/or celebrities, and the crowd’s vote counts for 25% of the total. Every year either Eli or Whitman has won the popcorn shrimp eating contest, and they have won the Pick-Off for the past four years with their band “Cotton Gin.” There are no contenders expected to challenge the eating reign, but with Gracey Kallifracks back in town the city is buzzing with excitement in regards to the Pick-Off.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Wonder of Wonders

We must be vigorously rigorous, if we are rigorous at all. Otherwise our rigor is the death of our vigor, rigor mortis.

Thomazen is here to invigorate.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

the Moth or the Flame: Release Party

The Moth or the Flame book release party on Sunday night at Desert Island was considered a success by Jehovah and Gracey Kallifracks. The doors opened at 6 and there were already people waiting outside to get in. I hadn’t even had a moment to catch my breath before people were filling up the store and I was signing books. I don’t know what I expected, but it was semi-shocking to see people lined up for an autographed copy.

Since it was Mother’s Day my mother acted as Surrogate Mom for all the people at the party, so no one had to go without a hug from momma. And after 2 hours of chatting, signing and communing we had Tall Tale Time with Jehosephat Sunrays. I emceed and told the first story, and eight others told stories while everyone relaxed on blankets and ate s’mores brownies with beer. Mmmm… delicious and delightful.

I can’t even begin to express just how grateful I felt for the love and support that was shown. There was so much warmth, love, and energy given to me that I do not know how to repay it. Thanks to all that came out, and if you missed it I hope to see you next time. Or you can make up for it by ordering a book!

Check it out:

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Desert Island

Big news!!! “the Moth or the Flame” is printed and I am having a book release party on Sunday May 11th! The party will be graciously hosted by Desert Island, the hottest new comic book store in Brooklyn (in North America really), which is located at 540 Metropolitan Ave. Visit their website here: The event will be from 6pm to 9pm and there will be beer, vittles, and great company. The book is hardback, will cost a measly fifteen simoleons, and I will sign any copies one wishes to be signed. Tell your friends and bring everyone along.

The proprietor of Desert Island, Gabriel, and I screen printed posters for the event this weekend. This is what it looks like:

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Thursday, April 24, 2008

Smile brazen monster

I discovered this image by stumbling over a dead rat. I was in my attic searching through old boxes of toys and books. Apparently either the cats had killed it, or it had just crawled into my domain to die a dignified death amongst stacks of great works of western literature and MUSCLES (a delightful little collection of Japanese toys from the 80s, if you didn’t know). Regardless of how it got there, in the dim lighting I didn’t see it and suddenly found myself cheek down on the floor. This was a fortuitous occurrence as I was peering through an accidental tunnel between boxes at a discarded sheet of paper. I reached in and it was embellished with the mysterious image you are now seeing before you. The words “GURGLE ANTIQUITY ANASTASIA” were inscribed on the back.

I know that I must have drawn this, as it is executed in my own hand, but I cannot remember doing it. If anyone has any interpretations please let them be known.

The Rat was given an honorable burial.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

The quest continues

The Egyptians were the first to map the skies through time. It was they with the depth of vision and the clarity of perception to make universe shifting predictions millennia into the future. But they could show me nothing. My quest was one of abysmal proportions. A titan-quaking earth-shattering beast-god would be my guide. Power courses through its veins. Its veins snake through its insides like the hair of Medusa hissing and spitting and steaming bloody power. Let us dance.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

The Return

After hurricane Katrina Gracey Kallifracks returned to his ancestral homeland in the Boggy Swamp of Swampy Bogginess, on the outskirts of Thursday City in the Valley of Keene—hopes, ambitions, and bank account annihilated by nature and the powers that be. Gracey can shred his git-fiddle like a rabid feral cat on the arm of a cheap second-hand couch tossed into the dumpster to be reclaimed by mother landfill. Though the critics loved him—they all said he was either way too far ahead of the times or way too far behind—he never caught on with the people of New Orleans and was already on his last dime before Katrina’s landfall. Now that he’s back in the Valley of Keene he is continuing with his family’s rice farm, his main source of subsistence, and he continues to hone his craft on his back porch and in any local dive that will have him. You can catch him for free most nights out in the boggy swamps or on the cheap at bars like Gunther’s, 3 Sisters Pub, or the Devil’s Outhouse.

Imagine the sound of a chorus of bullfrogs, tree frogs, crickets, owls, and cougars all wailing in harmonious lament to the tune of a shared nightmare of mother earth dying then twist that around a crying angel and you might come close to approximating Gracey’s sound. And don’t even get us started on the haunting performances he enacts (words can’t do it justice, but be warned you will not soon forget it). He is a one man force of nature. We here at Thursday City News just hope that one day he finds an audience outside the swamp and the critics.