The Beginning of the…?
Things are changing for me. I just finished up almost a year of unemployment, but I have a contract position that should turn into a job now. Never say always, though, especially if youâ€™re not good at most things â€“ nothingâ€™s ever certain.
Anyway, things are changing. I take a train to work, and the hours are crazy. I work out every day (OK, more like 5 days a week â€“ I shoot for 7) because my doctor said my high-density lipoprotein (the â€œgoodâ€ cholesterol) was frighteningly low. I believe in the importance of defeating Bush this November so much that when I got this contract position, the first thing I did was contribute to John Kerry's campaign. Iâ€™ve never contributed to a political campaign before, but I wanted to support his candidacy in a concrete way. Got a bumper sticker, too (here in the suburbs, I feel like it's a target).
For the first time in too long, I've started giving time to charity â€“ helping the local food pantry sort food. Sometimes I drag the kids along, too. I enjoy how much they resent it. In short, I feel good. When we have Take Stock of Your Life Day next month, I'll be ready.
I learned a lot while I was unemployed. I have a better people network now. I'm better at helping people, too. I learned how close and how far my family and I are from homelessness. I learned that some people never change their views, or life outlook, no matter what life experiences they encounter. I've learned how one person can be selfish and selfless at the same time. I learned that Rush Limbaugh was addicted to pain pills and was doing illegal drugs. Well, I guess we all learned that.
I didn't have to face homelessness or hunger for my family this past year, but not because I'm so talented that it could never happen to me â€“ it's just because I got bailed out by my parents. We had health scares this past year, too â€“ but we didn't get through them became we deal with adversity better than others â€“ we just had dumb luck.
I learned, this past year, that I think the scariest thing mainstream organized religion has going is the tacit belief it instills that if a believer is doing well, it's because they're blessed, and if someone else is not, they must have done something to deserve it.
You know what else Iâ€™ve learned? Whatâ€™s important. Whether Scott Kurtz is talented or an asshole. Whether hard is not funny because Sexy Losers is potty humor or hardâ€™s a genius because it's meta-potty humor. Whether Keenspot or Modern Tales is the one true way that will succeed. What comics that aren't 'spotted that should be. What Scott McCloud thinks. Which is more important â€“ the art or the writing. Damn it's important that that gets decided once and for all.
Webcomic awards, as they exist, are masturbatory, predictable, and important. What should happen is that one very knowledgeable person should determine the categories and select the winners. That person should be me.
Also, it's vitally important to not get associated with the wrong webcomics. Donâ€™t link to anybody or accidentally say ''hey, nice comic'' to any artist you don't think is worthy of you. You know why? Because there is one true ranking of webcomics from best to worst. There must be â€“ or these sorts of careful image honing practices wouldn't matter.
By the way, this will be my last column for Comixpedia. I hope those who have read the columns have enjoyed them.