Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Just a Quickie

Remember to button your eyes.
My creepy Coraline picture.
ooo!


But sometimes those are best.

'Tis the season of making lists. To that end here's one!

~pack for Maine which i should've done yesterday but got nothing done instead.
~decide what movies to bring (Wanted, The Big Lebowski -i could watch that over and over- The Moulin Rouge maybe)
~avoid snowstorm by leaving early
~thank mom for watching Bailey
~thank erika and brian for picking up all the food i ran out of time to get myself
~tickle the now officially 2 year old kids goodbye
~go to the Maine house cabin
~do not get sick (...i think i am getting sick)
~finish this list
~ pay bills (check!)
~pop some champagne
~wish everyone a happy new year

Happy New Year Everyone!

~wish everyone a happy new year (check)

be safe out there y'all.

Have you been keeping an eye on Coraline the entirely made-by-hand animation movie due out very soon? It's not CGI, it's good olde fashioned handimation and if you're like me you're excited to see it AND read the book (which I haven't done yet)

Sorry Neil.
Feel free to send along a copy.
;)

Peace out.
-T

Monday, December 29, 2008

Holli-daze (part one)

Auntie Katie will be so proud.


Not a huge post today but a quickie and quickies are sometimes good.
We had a great Christmas; the babies were adorable, the family was hilarious, everyone had a great time and I ate so much and laughed so much my belly hurt on both counts. I found a few more artists to admire that I will share with you guys when I have more than a handful of moments to sit still - there is so much running around to do over the next couple of days.

Working in a Mechanic's garage is definitely a unique experience. I feel for those people whose cars broke down on Christmas -talk about a holiday nightmare. So the next few days for me will be cleaning up those sorts of car-related messes.


A ride around motorcycle, some toy firemen
and a metric ton of books. I'd say they made out okay.

Bailey ran around so hard at the Arboretum yesterday. Peter's Hill is this huge, fun-to-sled hard-to-run mountain of a hill that all the dogs in Roslindale/JP seem to congregate. It's like insta-play date for doggies. Since it has been unseasonably warm the past few days I just had to capitalize on it. Erika brought Brian, some sammidges 3 different drinks (iced tea, ginger ale and water) to the park with her weimaraner Codi and we played fetch with him and Bailey interspersing tennis ball chasing with jump-stick. Bay can jump so freaking high.

Anyway, needless to say he's been completely passed out all morning recuperating.
And as for me, I'm off to catch up on podcasts, oogle Blair Butler (rrowr) and write some repair orders.

Catch you all on the flip side.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Very Nearly There...

Merry Christmas! ...(almost).

Had the babies again this weekend. That was a bucketful of fun.
They play off each other so well. My mom is fond of saying they speak half-English, half-twin and you can hear in this video how Ethan chatters away garbley after rocky rocky rocky time.
And could Sekiah be any clearer about her preference NOT to play peek-a-boo but to instead play rocky, rocky? I submit that she cannot.

Also:
I am in love.
See here:
video


And below is Dee winding up the jungle bell snow man she brought over and making the kids GIGGLE! and SQUEAL! I only caught the last bit of this game but it was brilliant fun.


video

******

As miserable and cold as it has been these past few days, snow is exceptionally lovely. I'd argue it is still beautiful even when it's brown and slushy and mucky and gross. There's a certain insulating prettiness about it. Something so seemingly innocuous -the snowflake- multiplied by a billion floating (or sometimes sleeting or plopping wetly) down on a city can render it incapacitated.

There's poetry to that in my opinion.

So long as you don't have to shovel too much of it.

Brian was out all night plowing for the state.
Dee came over and played with the babies. We drank some wine and laughed a lot. It was very homey. In the morning after we made eggs-in-toast for breakfast Brian swung by and plowed out the driveway. It's nice to have friends like that.

Morris' Specials: Cut a hole in the middle of a slice of bread.
Crack an egg into that hole and grill it on th
e stove. flip, grill and serve.

****

Now it is Monday morning and I am tired.

AP and Meghan, Matthew and I all had dinner at Pho Republique (I might have spelled that wrong) at the end of last week. We were supposed to go to Toro but they were suddenly closed for a private party. We joked about how Meghan could just walk in and vouch for us. She appears to belong at any party. They drank cold saki out of what looked like a jam jar. Erika came out and met us after dinner was done and we walked the cold city streets for awhile, having parked close to Toro but far from Pho.

Here is Matthew trekking through the South End.

And in case you are wondering I am working the day after Christmas but only for a few hours.
There is so much late minute stuff for me to do already including shopping that it will be nice to have s few days off.

*******

OH! And I very Nearly Forgot!
CONGRATULATIONS TO MY LITTLE BROTHER WHO IS NOW ENGAGED!!
And congratulations to Jessie who said YES!

Thanks to the great computer crash of '08
I have no good pictures of Pat and Jessie together.
Here is the best I can do!

I can't wait to get all of the juicy details on Wednesday night (otherwise known as Christmas Eve) about how he knelt down to "tie his shoe" and how he asked her while they were at some winter wonderland thing in Western Massachusetts; his advice to me after was simply "make sure you bring her far enough away that she has to say yes, otherwise she's walking home." They've been together 9 years now.

Wow.

This hills are alive with the sound of music.
Or something like that.

So many things to celebrate this year.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Guess Where I Was Last Night...

To be fair it looks much more magical lit up at night.

The State House!

Well, I wasn't there exactly, but I walked past it.

Matthew and I were meeting some friends for dinner and drinks up on Beacon Hill at a place called Emmet's Pub. The food was delicious. I had chicken and broccoli and ziti with crusty garlic bread and drank Black & Blues all night (A Black & Blue being half Guinness, half Blueberry ale) which I justified after feeling a bit bruised myself having forgotten the power cord to my GPS at my mom's house and having forced Matthew to navigate the complex, counter-intuitive network of one way streets in Beacon Hill ultimately ending up with us momentarily turning the wrong way down a one way street.

Thankfully I realized our error, reversed real quick into a hydrant spot, threw the Jeep in Park and did my best not to scream bloody murder (as my father would say). Poor Matthew. Poor anyone who has to drive with me when I am lost. I am impossible. And I do not think knowing that I am impossible makes it any less hard to be around me.

So, Black & Blues were in order.
Matthew drank... Corona? I don't remember.

To make the shamrock you leave about 1/8 room in the pint glass,
allow the head to set up (or harden) then pour then the remaining
8th while moving the glass around to create your desired shape.

As we walked by the front of the State House Matthew remarked that he's never walked past there before. We could see down the hill into the Commons where the Zamboni machine was polishing the ice down in the Frog Pond. It was cold but really crisp and lovely. The pub was nice and warm. Matthew had their shepherd's pie and we all split really delicious, finger-licking good wings.



All in all a tremendously fun night.

And now, it's morning, I'm back at work, we are still slammed with broken cars, and this new scene in Duck; the one that takes them all the way to Graceland, is so much fun to draw.

It's nice to love what you get to do all day.

Peace out.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Another Day That Gets Away

Is it past 3pm already?

Used to be a time when my daily post was up before 10 o'clock in the morning.

The good news is my rendition of We Three Kings is coming along nicely. I have people ask me all the time if I play piano when they come into the waiting room and see my little keyboard sticking out from behind the desk. The slightly irritating guy this morning demanded I play for him, then hummed me a tune and belted out some lyrics him. I kid you not. It would've been shocking if it wasn't so hilarious.

I, however, declined to perform.

Here is a wonderful little How-To when making a gingerbread house.

Step one: Have Corinne mix the frosting and assemble the pieces.
Step two: Have Corinne entertain the kids by squirting the frosting into their mouths.
Step Three: Laugh until your belly hurts.

video

I really have to get back to these repair orders.
Matt's got work out the wazoo and the phone keeps ringing off the hook.
In this economy that's not a bad thing.

Adieu homies.

Monday, December 15, 2008

A Little Bit

Tonight's post is late and arguably too short.

Here is an article I have yet to read but have it on great authority that it will be good.
It appears to be about writing books which is always interesting to me.

A few things of note:
-I went to the Arboretum this weekend sans Bailey and I think he detected my deception when I got home by maniacally sniffing my pant cuffs.
-I had the most DELICIOUS Merlot straight from a Napa Valley vineyard and I am now determined to visit some vineyards on my very own.
-TravelZoo consistently posts nothing about my future imaginary trip to Peru and this annoys me.
-My Christmas shopping has officially begun. So far it is *Internets* (5) *Shopping Malls* (0)

and Katie's back.
Hallelujah.

Friday, December 12, 2008

(removed embedded item.)

Thanks to Neil Gaiman I just discovered this artist today (Craig P. Russell) and he's really good!I have yet to get into the Sandman chronicles beacuse, to be honest, I think the artwork in the original is crap. 80's style el-crapo. This man did not do that art (as far as I know he didn't! If it was him he got A LOT better). I could confirm or deny this by doing the slightest bit of reasearch but I'd rather just write about NOT looking it up instead.

La la la.

I amuse me.

Tonight I have the babies.
Did you know they will be 2 on the 3oth?
TWO!
I can't believe it. Thank god for unanswered prayers, though. Back in the day when we found out the due date was right around New Year's I had hoped one of the twins would be born on December 31st and the other on January 1st. I can see now that might've been a lifelong bummer for a twin to have to deal with. Especially the younger of the two, so in retrospect, I'm glad.

and HEY! Corinne! If you are reading this --will you finish up with Michael Cunningham's The Hours so I can have it back please? It was on the floor in your room on Halloween. I keep thinking of quotes from it I want to write down. The only one I seem to remember these days is "a dozen roses offer their complex, slightly sinister beauty," and even though its pretty it's not cutting the mustard.

Thanks.

In the meantime here is a video that illustrates the heart-melting cuteness I get to hang out with tonight. What can I say? It's love.

video

Have a safe and happy weekend you guys.
Go do something fun.

___________________________________

Who am I kidding?
One wasn't enough.
Who is sleepy?
Someone is...


video

Thursday, December 11, 2008

I Miss Katie!

Certain friends of mine are touring Aruba.
Gone are the endless days of gmail chats and wasting time talking about comics.
Sigh...

Thankfully she'll be back in a week.
tanner and happier and hopefully less stressed out about work and the economy.

Random Notes:
-I love Mary J Blige's "Press On," comes highly recommended.
-Duck: the Script is Hilarious. I can't wait 'til this stuff sees the light of day.
-Kat Williams is a funny motherfucker. I saw his 2nd comedy special but was assured his first one with Snoop Dog was even better. I'll be checking that out soon and let you all know what the verdict is.

In fact here's a clip!
(please NOTE: Kat Williams swears A LOT! He drops f-bombs and uses the N-word in place of pronouns all the damn time. If you can deal with that [and you can!] than click play and laugh, laugh, laugh, you MF-ers)




And now a question:
Am I the only one on the planet that hasn't seen Lost?
Should I rent the entire season or take a pass?

You decide America.
You decide.

Peace out.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

The Usual Life?


We live in a go-go-go world where the only constant thing is change, right?
Things change every day, all the time.
Your boss needs you to show up early for an emergency deadline, you spilled your coffee, the shower was too hot, your dog threw up on the floor - even when things don't appear to be different -you had cheerios for breakfast just like you always do, the coffee was ready at the right time- you, yourself are still different.

A customer of ours came in last week wearing a t-shirt that read: It may appear that I'm doing nothing, but on a molecular level I'm really quite busy. That cracked me up. Our bodies are not the same from one moment to the next, from one meal or one breath or one heartbeat to the next. And more than what we eat, or where we are, or what we are doing, the thing that drives that change is time.

Time means I am older now than I have ever been.
And now I'm even older than that.

My question is do you think there is a difference between the physical changes we see in ourselves over time and the emotional ones? Can we bolster our own emotional growth the way we can our physical growth?

For example, I know I can change my body. If I work out more I know I'll get stronger, if I run and train I can become faster, my heart muscle will pump more efficiently and even though all of this is ultimately a doomed endeavor (someday I will die) in the short term (say the next 60 years or so) I will be arguably a more comfortable, happier, and healthier human being.

But can the same be true for our emotional selves?
Where is the gymnasium for the human soul?
How can I train my heart muscle to feel more and to be more compassionate?

Everyone at some point or another has behaved poorly. We all wish we could go back in time and fix something we said or did to hurt someone we really care about. So how do we go about turning that desire to behave better into actual better behavior?

Sometimes I have hurt the people I love the most because I felt threatened, sometimes beacuse I felt trapped, or hurt, or unloved, or unlovable or sometimes without much reason at all. Do you think we can ever truly move away from this sort of behavior or is this an inevitability none of us can avoid?

Mary Oliver has a poem about listening to your own inner voice that I love.
She just might be my favorite poem-er of all time. And that's saying something let me tell you.

The Journey
One day you finally knew
what you had to do, and began,
though the voices around you
kept shouting

their bad advice--
though the whole house
began to tremble
and you felt the old tug

at your ankles
"Mend my life!"
each voice cried.
But you didn't stop.
You knew what you had to do,
though the wind pried
with its stiff fingers
at the foundations,
though their melancholy
was terrible.
It was already late,
enough, and a wild night,
and the road full of fallen
branches and stones.

But little by little,
as you left their voices behind,
the stars began to burn
through the sheets of clouds,

and there was a new voice

which you slowly
recognized as your own,
that kept you company
as you strode deeper and deeper
into the world,
determined to do
the only thing you could do--
determined to save
the only life you could save

-(mary oliver)


If there is an emotional gymnasium I'd like to go there.
I practice being good in my day to day life.
I'm a loving aunt and an attentive daughter and a funny big sister and a good natured cousin. I'm an honest friend. I'm loyal. I am generous. That seems like it's enough so far. I just found myself wondering about all this today.
I know, I know, it's not even 10 o'clock on a Wednesday.

If you need me I'll be meditatively drawing at my desk.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Oldie but Goodie!

Last night this appeared in my inbox:

Thanks for lending me your windbreaker C-dog!

Two summers ago C-dog took me out for a sail in her handmade Mellonballer. (Mellonball? I don't know boats). C-dog's papa makes boats, all types of sailing boats and back in the day he used to make surf boards and surf in Barbados. Someday, I too, will learn how to surf.

Things have been crazy at the office.
Patrick called me this morning laughing, asking me if I was taking tomorrow off because of this.
He likes teasing me for getting so many days off a year (which isn't really true, he just works too much. They say even God took Sunday off).

A day without gay
was an idea cooked up by those kind people who oppose proposition 8. The tag line is "Fight H8 with love." December 10 is International Human Rights Day and we are encouraged to go out there and do some good in the world. Take the day off of work and help a cause.

Or just, you know, do something nice tomorrow.

****

I inked the cabin drawing last night wile talking on the phone to one rather neurotic customer. I am a constant doodler (as if you didn't know). At bars I'll doodle on napkins, at dinner i'll discreetly jot notes down on the slice of paper in my pocket and at work I am almost constantly penning something. IT's time we got this art journal back on track!


Some artists I like (namely Cory Walker of scatchblag fame) will do a doodle a day and post that. I believe he hit his mark in 2007 with 365 posts. Well done sir! Cory is responsible for creating the Invincible characters with Mr. Kirkman before Ryan Ottley took over in issue 8.

Anyway, it's cold in this office, my dad just showed up with a piece of furniture for me to paint and I have to get back to the old grind.

Peace MF-ers.
Keep it real.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Cabin Time

Warm wood, little touches and a stone fireplace.
Just what I needed.

This weekend I high-tailed it to Vermont for a cabin-style night away. A bunch of people were going up to ski and snowboard all weekend and 4 of us came up just for one night. There was a roaring fire, an outstandingly beautiful homemade-looking cabin, delicious food, fantastic drinks and good conversations.
Sketch I did Sunday morning waiting for my ride home.

We played a round of 'Circle of Britt" which is essentially the drinking game 'Kings' but instead of pouring part of a drink into a center cup every time you pick a King, we drank a social. Britt was the name of one of the girls' on the trip and she was writing out the rules, hence the name.

We joked about always traveling with a bartender as Kerry made some amazing drinks. She's a bit of blend genius. I was having captain and something my guess is ginger ale, a splash of sugar free red bull maybe some other liquor... there was a hint of vanilla almost. And in any case it was delicious. I was sipping on the ice cold never ending cup.

My bottomless cup of goodness.
Veronika made some turkey meatloaf baked with Parmesan cheese and roasted red peppers right inside it, there was a white bean chili and steamed carrots and snap peas and pearl onions. I realized after I came home and downloaded all the pictures that I pretty much only took pictures of people eating (sorry you guys!).

I had two helpings and it was absolutely the best meatloaf I have ever had.

There was a bear ottoman that had a hollow rear end. We kept finding things to stuff in there all the while making inappropriate jokes. At one point Lorn decided to ride Mr. Bear cowgirl style.Ride that Bear! Ride him good!

All in all it was a great weekend away.
Animals and lesbians and snowfall and roaring fires and ping pong tables.
What could be better than that?

Happy Monday.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Remember that Book?

Remember that book we're making?
The one this site is (or was) devoted to before I got all autobiographical?
Well, here are some in-process pages.
I really shouldn't be posting these since they aren't done but, whatever.
I won't be embarrassed if you're not.

And it's my blog, I'll do what I want.















***

Getting back to my autobiographical news I nearly got my sneaker-geek friend fired yesterday! Okay, not really but still. Bragging about shoes is a thing of the past. I shall never do it again! I certainly won't do it on that crazy site known as Facebook. Yikes! Consider this lesson on hubris learned.

KP is coming in from Idaho this weekend and I couldn't be more excited. With any luck we'll get some sledding in this weekend. And by sledding I probably mean sitting near a fireplace playing beer pong or strip kings. ha ha. Somebody call grandma Betty's clinic and have them dust off the bedsheets. At this rate I'll fit right in.

Now, my phone's ringing.
Back to the real world.

****

addendum: this is freaking HILARIOUS!



And for those of you NOT using gmail: You are MISSING OUT.
That is all.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

A Proper Post

Who is this?
How did you get my number?

Wow.
I finally have a minute to sit still.

I guess I never realized what a shit show November could be for me. There were a total of 9 birthday's between the beginning of November and now AND Thanksgiving AND it's the start of the Holiday season. I've been go-go-going hard.

This morning I woke up way before my alarm went off. I could just make out the pale orange seeping into the black sky so I got up, showered (which is something I rarely do in the morning - I am a night shower-er), fed Bailey, and burned a photo CD off of my mother's computer. My mother is an avid eraser. If you were to hack into her email account you would find absolutely nothing saved. Once she reads an email, no matter how kind, or sweet, or funny she deletes it immediately. Every time. No exceptions. This is particularly annoying when she remembers something funny or interesting someone sent her and tries to explain it to us, but of course, can't remember it properly and also can't show us since oh yeah, she deleted everything.

The same is true of her photo card. Once the pictures get saved to her PC she deletes EVERYTHING off the card. No backup. No nothing. So, this morning when I went to "borrow" her photocard to put all the pictures we took from the holidays onto my work computer I discovered lo-and-behold it was empty.

Oh, mom.
Stop calling me here this is a private line.

So I decided to make a photo CD instead.
I failed miserably. In my defense it was incredibly early, too early for me to attempt to operate a computer machine, but I tried and believed I had succeeded only to find when I arrived at work and popped in the CD that it was blank.

Oh, joy.

I turn your attention to the fact that I am in a state of CONSTANT hangover (please reference my earlier comment about the solid month of birthdays) so forgive me. The darling pictures of the Christmas tree hunt will just have to wait.

I'm not sure anything gets cuter than this.
****

Last night, despite a few minor set backs we had a blast. The major snag was that the restaurant we were supposed to eat at, Tangerino, burst a pipe and never told us! When Lorn's girlfriend called to confirm our reservation a woman who doesn't even work for the restaurant answered the phone with "What do you mean nobody told you?" So after some shuffling around we went to a little place called "Figs" a Todd English restaurant about 2 blocks away and ate there instead.

The sangria was nice, the gourmet pizzas were huge. I had some Asparagus Frites; a plate of crunchy flash-fried asparagus spears over a bed of arugula with a lemon caper sauce that was divine. I split a 'Red Sox' pizza with Amy the woman to my left and got teased when I asked anyone if they wanted a slice describing in detail the succulent caramelized onions and sweet red peppers that left the light tomato sauce drizzled with melted mozzarella more on the sweet side than the typical tart.

Yesterday's discovery left me feeling like I had found a kindred. That artist I told you about Lucy Knisley loves describing some food too. Virginia Wolf would've been proud. DISCLAIMER: I have absolutely no right to reproduce this artwork here! However, it's awesome. And people need to know about awesome things. So go check out the full post here. And buy French Milk the graphic journal written by Lucy Knisley.
I want to eat food off a pillow filled with smoke! I want to be fed with an antenna without the use of my hands
if only to say I did it!

You have to scroll down her journal page to read the whole food comic but trust me it's worth it.

****

I wonder if December is going to fly by as fast as November did.
Goodbye 2008. Hello 2009.

Now if I can only get cracking on my Christmas shopping.
(Shudder)

Peace.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Lame Post



Wow. It's Tuesday already and the end of a Tuesday at that and I haven't written anything since Thanksgiving! Since way back in November!

Well... that isn't EXACTLY true. I write but it's all been analog, not digital.

November was a busy month for me.
Birthday's out the wazoo. Holidays, Christmas tree hunting, pumpkin beer drinking, deck building, office decorating and oh yeah! I got in a car accident!

A fender bender really. 5 miles an hour. But still. No one got hurt but a bumper was dented and a car was scratched and yes, it was my fault. Tonight is Lorn's 31st birthday (another birthday!) and we are all going to Tangerino, this fun swank restaurant in Charlestown for dinner to celebrate. I looked at their menu on-line and holy lord it looks delicious. I already what I am getting (more or less).

For those of you comic buffs out there wanting to support a fellow female creator might I recommend Lucy Knisley she just released a comic journal about the month she spent in Paris with her mom and from what I hear it's amazing. I found her today while catching up on all my Around Comics news. You can listen the interview with her here.

No go support her!

I will write a proper post tomorrow but in the meantime here are some pictures of my Christmas Tree hunt with the babies.

More tomorrow!