Friday, June 20, 2008
Friday's comic
Friday's comic is up, in case you are catching this via a blog feed and not on the site.

You won't want to miss next week's comics.
posted by Blogger Dad at 1:37 PM - 0 comments

Tuesday, June 17, 2008
I shouldn't watch the news, or any television
You might not want to turn on the news for the foreseeable future. Apparently, the world is going to hell in a handbasket. Oil prices are skyrocketing, the real estate market is dead, unemployment and foreclosures are at record highs and now flooding has damaged corn crops which will further increase the price of food.

I made the mistake of watching the news while I was home cleaning today. Holy crap what a mistake! While I was looking to take my mind off of my recent job loss (as detailed in my prior post) the news did nothing to help my mood.

Like a 12 ton crushing boulder of despair, the news just suffocated and crushed what little hope I was feeling. I had started off the day feeling positive and hopeful for future job prospects and my abilities to perhaps find work.

To hear cable news anchors tell it, the economy, the war, the weather and global warming are only going to worsen. Things will NEVER EVER get better! Stock up on food supplies and find a bomb shelter, society is falling apart. Well, just be careful WHICH bomb shelter you use. Chances are good that it was made in China and has dangerous toxins which will kill you if you touch the walls, breathe the air inside, etc...

I think I'm going to avoid televised news for a few weeks. I don't need people telling me how much the world sucks right now. What I NEED is something positive, something affirming, something ... I dunno' good. Yes, I fully recognize (and embrace) the irony of angrily ranting about a lack of positive things.

So, I asked myself, what is it that allows so many Americans to go through life obliviously happy while the world around them falls apart? Other than copious amounts of alcohol and pharmaceuticals. Then, while changing channels, I came across a possible answer... MTV.

One half hour episode of watching some spoiled brat on "My Sweet Sixteen" whine that daddy got her the wrong colored Porsche for her birthday should make me feel better, right? No, it only made me angry and in favor of forced sterilization programs for our country's ignorant.

I can't imagine who the target audience is for this show. Viewers can ONLY have one of two reactions. 1) a perfectly justified hate or 2) a desire to emulate and be like these spoiled princesses. So either a lot of people like to watch things which anger them (which I must admit to doing from time to time) or there are a lot of people emulating this lifestyle of excess and insane sense of entitlement. And that just makes me sad.

So right now, I'll go watch The Daily Show, which at least puts stupid things into perspective and gives me a laugh no matter how bad my day is going. After that, I'm going to turn off the TV and get back to working on things distraction free.

Thanks to everyone who emailed or commented regarding my job loss (as detailed in my last blog post). I am in the process of compiling a resume, getting my clips together and figuring out what I will do next.

I posted a new Todd and Penguin last night. I'll post a new comic Wednesday night.


posted by Blogger Dad at 10:32 PM - 2 comments

Monday, June 16, 2008
an update of sorts
I lost my job this week.

My job as a reporter and editorial cartoonist has come to a surprising end after nearly three years. I was informed that due to the economy (real estate and auto sellers, who are the biggest advertisers for papers, happen to be among the most hurting industries with oil prices and the housing market), the paper simply can’t afford to pay me anymore. I am still in a state of shock.

I don’t write about my job much because I try to keep my work and my artistic lives separate. However, you could likely tell by the lack of timely updates from time to time when I was busy and just how important the job was to me. Those who have been reading the blog for a long time know how excited I was when I got the job. I’ve always wanted to be a writer and got my shot at this newspaper. Since arriving, the job has seemed like one long crash course in just about everything. When you work at a small paper, you have to master several beats - some I was able to devote more time to than others. I compare to a continuous crash course where I was forever learning new things and meeting new people. Along the way, I’ve managed to write a few stories which touched or helped a few people.

I’m thankful for all the people who helped me learn the ropes and all who allowed and trusted me to share their stories. It’s been an incredible honor.

This is only the second job I’ve been laid off from. The first was a jewelry store when I was 17. I’d had the job only a couple of weeks and they had to let me go because they needed someone with more experience to help fix jewelry and watches. They hired me hoping I could learn, but in reality, the shop owner didn’t have enough time to get me up to speed quickly enough. I felt bad, like I’d let them down and took that job loss hard.

This one blew me away.

I was told that my layoff has nothing to do with job performance.
Considering that I was the last reporter left, and had a good relationship with my editor, I believe it. It would be a lot easier, if I got fired for some other reason. At least then I could be mad at myself or mad at my boss. In this situation, I have nobody to be angry at, other than circumstances. And being angry at circumstances will not change them.

All I feel is sadness - sad that I won’t be part of whatever changes are in store for the paper as it will surely go on one way or another. And sad for my financial situation, for obvious reasons. So, it was with heavy heart that I went home to tell my wife that I was laid off.

Her reaction, when presented with this new uncertain reality, was about what can be expected. What do we do now? Things were different before we had a baby and all the associated costs. So, what do we do? I don’t know. We just do whatever we have to do. I’ve faced worse in my life. I just thought such bad times were behind me, not ahead.

I looked at my son, thinking of the sacrifices my own father made for our family as we were growing up. I put on a false happy face, though, as I didn’t want my son to sense anything was wrong. He’s only one year old, too young to understand what’s going on. My smile seemed to work, as he ran around the living room with a huge goofy smile. Suddenly, he started an impromptu game of “tag,” ran up to his mom, tagged her and ran away, laughing. Then he did the same to me. Each time he got just a bit past us, we scooped him up, hugged and tickled him. I defy any of you to stay upset after hearing the sound of a toddler’s laugh!

Suddenly, my smile was sincere.

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posted by Blogger Dad at 2:05 AM - 2 comments

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About Me
Name: Blogger Dad
Florida, United States
About Me:
I was a reporter at a Florida newspaper, where I covered city politics and draw editorial comics. Now, I'm a Blogger Dad (click the link for my webpage - the blog on the bottom is for Todd and Penguin) in search of a job and attempting to write a book or four. I'm also a cartoonist, how most of you know me, who draws Todd and Penguin, Taking Up Space and the occasional other titles, featured on I'm married (sorry, all you ladies interested in overweight guys who spend too much time drawing) and have a one year old son and two cats. Three of the above mentioned poop way too much!
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