Year in Review: 2016

casey

2016 was worse than 2015. You already knew that. 2017 will be worse.  I have a suspicion that next year will outdo this year in terms of celebrity deaths.  I think that kind of thing will track population growth.  I have a justified belief that next year will be worse than this year in terms of the political sphere.

2017’s going to suck, but I’ll talk about that next year.

I had plenty of things that sucked this year, and I bet you did too.  I had a post written up saying what I went through this year, and tried to make something hopeful-sounding out of it. But then I decided I didn’t want to air all that stuff.  If you already know what things sucked for me, that’s because I wanted you to know.

What I will share is that I didn’t publish as much this year. I hope I do more next year.  Here’s a roundup of everything I did:

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Dumpster Vinyl

I posted one digitized disc. One is more than zero!

I made fan art for a public service campaign that was part of a commercial radio package, meaning that it was probably heard only a few times by a few people, many of whom are now dead.

Miss EBS is not dead; she lives on in my heart.

And she can live on your wall, too, for only $23 plus shipping!

I have started digitizing discs again. I try to do it on Sundays, because Sundays are a time when I go a little stir crazy. I’ve also been doing some research on these.

You’ll see.

YOU’LL ALL SEE

Jimmy Jone

I do actually feel bad about not doing more Jimmy Jone. I had honestly planned to have posted four more issues than I did this year. But I got anxious and told myself the stories weren’t good enough, that the art wasn’t good enough. But every time I make comics, that feeling makes me make them better.

I released two issues, a Part One and a Part Two. I am proud of these!

Blogging

I did a couple of series of blog posts on things that have long been questions in the back of my mind. Now they are answered! I thought that the Cosmopolitan series would be an easy way to put up a post every week, but then I actually dug into it and had to do research and real writing.

Matt Groening’s signature was in Simpsons Illustrated more than once per issue, which is really all that was needed.

Cosmopolitan has cleavage on the cover because once apes started standing up, you couldn’t see and access the vaginas as easily.

Perfect Strangers

Perfect Strangers is a show about two grown men who spend all their time fighting with each other because once apes started standing up, you couldn’t see and access the vaginas as easily.

I am almost halfway done reviewing that show, and… damn, I’m not even halfway done reviewing that show. It’s still a very rewarding experience for me. Just like the webcomic, it’s proof to myself that I am capable and funny. Every week I have an existential crisis about how well I can write and whether there is a limited number of jokes, or of academic theories, in me.  I have the crisis, I write the review, I realize it’s good. As Balki might say, blather, wrench, repeat.

But I’ve kept at it. I achieved escape velocity from season 2. I posted every week. I wrote 51 posts. I threatened the families of respected academics to get them to write the other two. I’m very proud of my 6,000-word historiography of the first three years of the show.

I’m going to keep doing it. It keeps me regular.  Haha, that is a joke about pooping. I actually do get constipated.

I have 86 episodes left.

Music

I’m mentioning this because it was on my 2016 preview list. I did continue to listen to years’ worth of music. I finished 1984 (no post yet, give me time) and I’m just about done with 1976.  I… may or may not write about these. I realize I don’t have much to say other than “these are my favorite songs”.  I figure eventually, I’ll try to tackle every year in the 1970s and 1980s.  but next on my list is 1988, and, uh, I wasn’t thinking initially about how there are more albums each year. I will be listening to 1988 all through 2017.

Toys

Another thing on last year’s preview list. I did ramble on incoherently about some toys!

I have more toys; I need to get a good camera and a lightbox. I also need to finish some of these sets.  The toys I’m into are pretty rare, and it takes a long time to get a complete set of them. There’s also this idea that I’m holding onto that tells me I have to do them in a particular order. So, you know, if that’s what you want to see more of, let me know and buy me a lightbox.

Other

I made some promotional art for the Noiseless Chatter Xmas Bash!!!! If you buy a thing (print, duvet, leggings), the profits will go to the Trevor Project.

Year in Preview: 2017

  • More Perfect Strangers Reviewed. I’ll reach the halfway point, no matter whether you go by number of seasons or number of episodes. I am also working on a special livestream event to happen after I’m finished with season 4, likely late March/early April.
  • More Jimmy Jone. As in, real soon. January 17th will be the 10th anniversary of the publication of Jimmy Jone. I have four complete issues to give you. I plan to write a post about the anniversary, and I may even be able to have one special feature kind of thing to accompany the event. After that, I’m working on a four-part story that will get us close to the halfway point of the whole comic.
  • #moviepuke . This is actually something I’ve already done. It’s probably the worst thing I’ve ever made. But I don’t want to talk about it yet, because it’s not finished. Sort of. There might be news with it in 2017. I’ll certainly write about it. We’ll see.
  • More blog posts. I’m going to be upfront and state that these are things I’d like to write about. No promises, though.
    • Dumpster Vinyl. Like I say, I’m digitizing still. I have ~150 discs more to digitize. I also need to buy a record player that can play 78s, because I can record a 78 at 45 speed, but when I try to speed it up in Audacity, it sounds like poop.
    • Problematic “sequels” and problematic conclusions for media that took a long time to be “finished”. Stuff like Fight Club 2 or Shock Treatment. Stuff like Jack Kirby’s Hunger Dogs. You know, stuff you haven’t read or seen.
    • Toys. Buy me a lightbox.
    • Trading cards. I really like trading cards as a format, and even though crowdfunding could herald a new age of trading card sets that reflect an artist’s vision as opposed to a business model, I think the format has had its heyday. And because I like trading cards so much, I want to showcase some of the absolute worst pieces of shit that were ever committed to cardstock.
    • Music?
  • A couple of comic projects? I joined a comics Meetup group, and the guy running it wanted to do a 12-page collaborative comic. I offered to write it and wrote probably 18 pages’ worth of jokes. Also, if you followed me on Twitter or Facebook this past year, you probably saw me doing the 100 Days of Making Comics Challenge. That group is going to try to put out an anthology, so I’ll make a comic for that.  If either of these things comes to fruition, you’ll see it here.
  • Fix the damn coding on http://www.jimmyjone.com once and for all.

Projects I’ll probably never get to, even if having had an organ transplant hadn’t significantly shortened my life expectancy

Last year’s list, plus:

A third Dr. Phibes story in comic form called “Black Vulnavia” where Dr. Phibes hires a black woman to be his assistant and some damn how has another group of people he wants to take revenge on.

Vocabulary study of the Billboard Hot 100 singles.

Sliders fanfic script that ties up all the loose ends from Season 4 and brings back Maximillian Arturo because he’s still alive dammit.

Citation analysis-style study of pop culture references in MAD Magazine and Cracked Mazagine.

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2016 sucked, and it sucked way more for people who don’t share my skin color or genitals. 2017 looks like it’s going to be the same, or worse. Let me know what I can do other than continue writing about how Perfect Strangers hates women.

Saturday morning addendum:

I wrote this a week ago, and I’ll admit I do sound pretty down. I’ve been pretty down. I do actually have good things going on for me that are unrelated to the work I do.  I’m making more connections, I’m trying to get things together, I’m doing things that legitimately make me happy. I was on a pretty big high through all of 2015 from getting the kidney transplants, and 2016 saw that wane. I thought I had my all of my shit finally together, and I felt some good mastery over parts of my life.  I’ve hit some walls this year, but that’s no reason to give up on trying to scale them. I imagine that’s the way it works, though, right? You struggle through the first Zelda dungeon until you get a new weapon, and it serves you really well until you get to the next dungeon, and  you struggle again.  The best I can offer for a message of “hope” is that, if you feel like giving up, sit on it for a little bit to see how much of it’s brain chemicals, and don’t give up without a damn good reason.

See you in… 10 days, I think? I’ll give you Jimmy Jone stuff.

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