The Ides of Trump

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I don’t think he’s interested in my message, but I do suspect that images of ladies in light bondage might get his attention.

So, technically, “the Ides” aren’t a negative thing, unless you are actually Julius Caesar and your so-called friends decide it’s as a good a time as any to put an end to your potential tyranny. Ides simply refers to a date in the middle month in the Roman calendar, sometimes the 13th and sometimes the 15th, depending on the month. But most people have the sense that it means something unlucky.

So, this is The Ides of Trump, the point being to break the world record for postcards sent to one person in a day, in order to present a visual scale of just how many people do not approve of the current president’s policies and actions in the first 50 days of his administration. You can still participate: just acquire a postcard, write a message explaining your disapproval, add the hashtag #theIdesofTrump and send it off to the White House today, March 15th.

I think the Sword of Damocles has probably been on my mind because the Girl requested I read her Lemony Snicket’s Series of Unfortunate Events. We recently finished book 3, wherein some of the action takes place on Damocles Dock, thus foreshadowing the inevitability that unfortunate events will come crashing down on the heads of the Baudelaire orphans.

And, in a more classical sense, the Sword of Damocles hangs over anyone in a position of power. Things can change. Things can change faster than you could imagine.

I had long stretches of time in my 20s and 30s when I could not afford healthcare. For most of my current relationship, I’ve been covered as The Man’s dependent, but since he’s gone into real estate, I require Medicaid. As a person with multiple chronic health conditions that require treatment in order to allow me to even attempt to participate in society, I am grateful for the ACA, and uncertain as to how I would begin to go about receiving care were my coverage to be destroyed.

Although I think there are a lot of important issues about which a rational person could choose to protest, this is the one that affects me most, and the one for which I thought of a little cartoon. There are actually many swords hanging over our heads: the ones that represent the pollution of air and water as the kleptocracy deregulates business; the ones that represent hate crimes against gay and transgendered people, and against people with dark skin or non-Christian spiritual beliefs; the ones that threaten freedom of speech and of the press; the ones that discriminate against immigrants, the very backbone of this nation and the force with which America was built; the ones that oppress women, and the general right of individuals to exist as individuals with rights that should trump those of millionaires to make a few dollars more.

You can probably think of others.

Micro-WAV

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And give my love to Michelle and the girls. We miss you all so much.

You don’t even have to want to write comic political commentary anymore. It just writes itself, with or without any intention. You could just read the New York Times deadpan at this point and find 3 or 4 jokes already written on the front page. Ha ha ha. There goes your healthcare. There goes your right to drink clean water and breathe clean air. There goes your right to exist if the wrong person decides you don’t conform to their standards. Hilarious.

Must sleep.

 

Monday Gratitude: If you haven’t got your health…

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No, I’m not shilling for Whole Foods.

I’m choosing to be thankful for my current health. And hopeful regarding my continued health. At various points throughout my timeline I’ve been pretty proactive about my health, and, as a result, enjoyed decent health. At other points, I’ve ignored my problems until they overwhelmed me. It happened last year, a confluence of allergies, asthma, and the common cold that culminated in me being force-fed a nebulizer during a routine physical because the doctor claimed she couldn’t hear any air moving through the bottom part of my lungs.

Last fall, I felt something coming on–achier than normal, tonsils way bigger than normal and scratchy like the desert, so I was sure it was going to hit me hard–and my massage therapist told me to take these zinc tablets. And I didn’t get sick. And I started taking them semi-regularly, definitely any time I’ve been vaguely under the weather, and I haven’t gotten sick yet.

Today the Girl turned up with a disgusting cold: coughing, sneezing, congestion, &c. So here’s the real test of this product, because I definitely don’t want to have what she has, even though she assures us that aside from all her symptoms, she feels fine.

Everyone seems to have an opinion on zinc. When I bought my first bottle, the cashier who rang me up said, “Good for you!” and the lady behind me in line offered me her thoughts because she had researched it thoroughly when her father was dying of cancer and it “really works because it’s an RNA inhibitor.” Most people seem to agree that it works but don’t take it because it’s usually served in an unpleasant preparation. But this Whole Foods 365-branded version doesn’t seem to. It taste good, like a lemon drop. Just don’t take it on an empty stomach.

Anyway, I haven’t had any type of cold or flu or any viral/bacterial health issues in almost a year, so even though chronic conditions slow me down sometimes, in general I’m a very healthy person, and I’m really grateful for that. Now, I hope I haven’t jinxed myself.

Purpose

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Frustrating, hard to watch, and gets old really fast. ::rolls up sleeves, spreads more love and beauty::

True story. I don’t talk about it much, but I have had a few deeply spiritual experiences, and this one took place 4th of July weekend, 1997. I remember the date, because when I pulled into my parents’ driveway in the U-Haul, one of the neighbors came over and joked that he thought this was supposed to be Independence Day. Ha Ha. I got in a day late, because the truck blew an alternator and I had to spend an extra night in Ohio. It was a magical vision quest that helped fine tune the compass of my life. And also helped me understand the opposition.

And I keep trying to make my contribution to the cause, and the haters keep stymieing the results.

Maybe the opposite of love isn’t always hate. Maybe often it’s just a total absence of concern for other humans. I’m not saying that there’s no hate—the guys in panel 4 are haters and proud of it—but they’re still a minority. The ability to not care about things that don’t personally affect you, that’s a common skill that happens to enable hate by default. Maybe if just a few more people switched over to the “spreading love and beauty” camp, that might be all it takes to flip the balance back toward the minority not deliberately ruining everything for the rest of us.

We are experiencing technical difficulties.

I just spent the last 3 hours drawing an insomnia comic. It was 99% finished, lacking only the word bubble. And then Photoshop just…closed itself. I didn’t close it. I didn’t click anything as far as I could see. It didn’t even ask me if I wanted to save. It just closed and lost all the changes I had made since the last save, and I was working so intently that the last save had been about 2 hours and 55 minutes earlier, even though I thought I had been saving as I went. So it’s 2 a.m. and I don’t have anything. Plus, it was an insomnia comic, so…you know. Sad Dragon. It was visually a very interesting comic. Challenging details. Gone. Gonna cry myself to sleep now. I really did draw a comic today.

Aerobics of the Night

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Now playing on VH1. And my imagination for all time.

Can you believe that no one has ever drawn this comic before? Google couldn’t find it, so it must be original, right? It works on so many levels. In other news, yesterday’s story was that of course the president met with the Russian ambassador during the campaign. Of course he did. Does this surprise anyone? That’s the world we live in now. But at least I got my funny back (accidentally—it was a solecism, and The Man insisted). Gene Simmons, Sweatin’ to the Oldies.

KISS had their first hit in 40+ years ago, so they’re basically oldies. This gag probably makes me basically an oldie.

More Surreal Life Hacks

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Basically, you can do whatever you want and when people question your behavior, just explain that it’s supposed to be surreal. Or don’t. 

Everything’s off-kilter, and being angry about it doesn’t seem to help. In fact, I feel like my attitude is probably starting to annoy people, so I tried to shift back to something resembling my previous brand of humor without completely abandoning the perspective that the United States of America is completely screwed up right now. I cannot authorize a federal investigation into Russian interference with the US election. I can’t force John McCain to rally Congress around the goal of restoring sanity to politics. I can’t protect my own health coverage. But, here and there, if you look around, you can fix little things, sometimes.

Of course, if we had just done a better job of teaching schoolchildren to recognize and reject logical fallacies for the last 30 years, we wouldn’t be in this situation. Ditto germ theory and the role of vaccinations in preventing the spread of infectious disease.

Organizing books is my personal meditation. You don’t have to break into people’s houses to do it. Public school libraries will usually let you just come in and do it for free. Some places actually pay you to do it!