Saturday, December 30, 2017

Gearing up for 2018...


     Yeah, I know; not much of a gun-ho charge into the new year. Well, it's not been much of an old year, to be truthsome on it. But, at least it's been a bit of a kick in the pants.

     I mean, I now have closure on something. It hurts - oh fuck does it hurt. But it will hurt less over time. I never got to share a whole lot of stuff with her that I desperately wanted to, but I can take what I've learned and move forward in life; maybe even love. Still... it would have been nice to share all these things with her I wanted to.

     I suppose with heartbreak comes the major drive to change. So, I did a character reboot. (No, that does not include the awkward process of learning how to draw the bald spot on the back of my head.) Some of it is just cosmetic; ditching the fedora and tie look for my old college art days. Also lost the beard, and cleaned up the hair. The rest is looking to put more smarts and arts in my head. And also a focus on shoring up those pesky health issues that have been bogging me down.

     I have no idea what 2018 has in store. Living in Silicon Valley has become so much more difficult if you're not a s tech exec or a high ranking political official. After the disaster of Seattle I don't want to simply run away; it didn't do me much good last time. There are other areas in California to live that don't suck; maybe I'll go there, eventually. But I will be better at what opportunities I find.

     So, how about you? Rolling out against big challenges in the new year? Is there no where to go but up, or do you have some momentum behind you from the end of this year? Well, whatever it is, I personally wish you all the best in the coming year.

     Let's make it a good one in 2018!

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

So long, 2017...



What's this?! A comic update?!

     Why yes, it is! Not much of one, I'm sorry to report. The glorious return to California for Neverland Transit Authority has been anything but.

     2017 has proven to be the interesting capper to a trilogy of bad years that has gone from nearly dying of heart failure (Which almost did me in this year, again, and almost to the day of the three year anniversary.), to becoming a social reject for... reasons, I assume, to attempting to find new life in Seattle only to have that blow up in my face because they don't understand the gig economy of Silicon Valley. (Though it's coming their way even now.)

     My return has been about as successful. A string of temp gigs, including house painting for a buddy's business, to landing a gig at a premiere contract that, for being such a place, pays lousy for very tricky work. (Did salaries get worse while I was away? Costs go higher? Or both?)

     Yep, my mom ran off to the east coast mud slick to be with a guy she met in an online support group for people who have had knee replacement. It's actually a funny tale of romance and I'm hoping for all the best for them both. Heck, I put her on the plane, myself.

     I did, in fact, reconnect with the greatest love of my life while I was away. We chatted on the phone at least three times a week. It was like when we first met. And, as things started tanking, I admit getting back to her was the biggest drive to coming home. I know we had no promises, but I was really hopeful.

     But hope just isn't enough, I suppose. And while I was making the big fights to get my life straightened back out and fluid, again, she met someone who was deeper into her reenactment scene. Yes, it hurts; in ways I just cannot explain. And I think that's about all I want to say about that.

     2018 is still full of promise, though. I mean, not that it couldn't be much worse than 2017, I suppose. (So not true, but I'm starting to move forward with some positive thought.) Going to be expanding and rebuilding this site. New comics will start back, soon. Station House Radio will be making more regular music mixes, again. I'll also be working to enrich my personal life, as well; including attempting to publish my first legitimate Science Fiction Novel. But more on that in the coming weeks.

     So here's to 2018; let's hope the adults don't wreck it before we can rise and become anew.

Sunday, April 2, 2017

The Four Stages of Logan...


     I think we can all start off by admitting that, though there have been some really good moments in the Twentieth Century Fox run of X-Men - and other assorted Marvel titles, they've been for the most part less than spectacular.

     But, after seventeen years, when Hugh Jackman gets to help orchestrate his goodbye to the single most loved - if not often overused and (maybe) overhyped - character, well everyone takes notice.

     Set in 2029, Logan takes place in a world that has learned of, and followed the exploits of a band of adventurous mutants called "The X-Men". But, now, mutants are all but gone, the world has moved on, and the last few surviving mutants work to eek out meager existence. James Howlett, aka: The Wolverine", works as a limo driver while trying to care for his aging mentor in a remote area of Texas when a nurse approaches him with a little girl in need of help.

     What follows is two hours of gut wrenching character building, action, drama, and a climax that, though you know it's coming, still hits you like a brick of adamantium. Performances by Patrick Stewart, and new comer Dafne Keen really drive this movie home, and - as described by USA Today, help this story transcend the comic-book genre. (Actually, there is nothing but absolute first rate performances by the entire cast; every last one.)

     Logan is a broken man, conflicted, and in both physical and emotional turmoil, that had me infuriated at his poor choices as he succumbs to his age and the toll taken from almost two centuries of life. In many ways it's so life-like in its depiction of the world it inhabits, and the people that live in it. So much so that how convoluted James Howlett has become, and how unresolved some things are left only make the best sense; making it feel real, heartfelt, and - ultimately - the only natural resolution for the character. A ride you take willingly, at the end.

     Like most I have enjoyed this character, in and out, through the last forty years. But this particular iteration is like none other. And where it detours from such titles as "Logan" and "Old Man Logan" from comic book continuity are absolutely brilliant, and make it - in my book - one of the few... very few... premiere movies of this particular genre. So, I suppose there's only one thing left to remark...

Goodnight James Howlett; travel well.

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Urp Hurp Blah Blah


Last moth one of my all time favorite sing/singer/musicians swung into town to play at The Freight & Salvage in Oakland, California; Peter Mulvey.

Peter is an amazing writer who is passionate about his causes and winds a good story while doing some amazing things with just a guitar. I first discovered hom totally by accident when I dug his album - Letters from a Flying Machine - out of the fifty cent bin at my local Rasputin's Music. Adding it to a pile to listen to during a holiday road trip, it became the only album I listened to the entire time. Needless to say I started scooping up his work when I got home.

My first meeting with Peter was very much less painful a while back, the last time he swung through town. I was much less a doofus, then. I don't know what, over the last two years, made me stupid dumb in the mouth, but yeah; pretty much crashed and burned trying to make small talk and let him know how much his music impacts my life.

If you like stuff like amazing storytelling, great guitar work, and something a little more folk rock like, then I cannot recommend Peter Mulvey enough.


CONDUCTOR'S NOTE

You've no doubt noticed things have been pretty much silent here for the past three months. We're still rebuilding after the adventures up in the Pacific Northwest. (Which is our way of apologizing for the low quality of this installment of Stuff.) As we remain transitory, Neverland Transit Authority is working on refining our current production process. However, comics should return next week. Watch for more Galactic Gun and Stuff.

And thank you for your continued ridership!

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Stuff: Gone and Back


After getting back on my feet and getting life rolling, again, I thought I had me a great adventure and future on the horizon when I packed up the entirety of Grand Central Station and headed north this past July to (literally) greener pastures in The Pacific Northwest and the end stop for all pilgrims of lost culture and affordability; Seattle.

But like they say about the best laid plans of mice and Chucks...

Shortly after this posts I will begin the "Drive of Shame" home. Over at The Conductor's Office I've posted some deeper thoughts on this misadventure, but I am beaten and broken. Nothing went according to plan; mostly because, though it was a good plan, it wasn't a good plan for Seattle. It was, in fact, a San Francisco/Silicon Valley plan. And, for better or worse (mostly worse), there's just not any place like Bay Area space. Now I have to go home and try and fix this mess I've gotten myself into.

GLUE! I NEED GLUE!

Comics - both Stuff and Galactic Gun - will return at the end of January. As much I'm also hoping to relocate Grand Central digitally into a new server and format in the coming month, as well as add some new content. This has been an interesting escapade, to be sure; one that has brought me ruin as well as new growth. I guess, the best way to look at it is that there's really no where to go but up, from here, in 2017.