Thursday, June 22, 2006


Finally. Today I got in the remaining two issues of the DC-Vertigo title, Animal Man that I needed to complete a set of all 89 issues + 1 annual. Usually my on-line auction wins go a WHOLE LOT smoother than this one did.

The problems began when I won the books way back on June 1st., and the dealer stated in his auction that he could send up to ten books for $3.95. A little confused by this since I won two items, but I figured that after the initial $3.95, any books up TO 10 would cost the same to mail.

And I DID email the seller first before I sent payment, but he never responded, so I sent the combined cost of the two comics plus the $3.95 to pay for them. Then...I get an email that stated the cost was $3.95 each (obviously), so I email the guy again to see if he wants me to mail him the difference. reply from him.

And time passes and the books haven't arrived, but all of a sudden I get a notice from eBay stating I was a NON-paying bidder! I reply to their notices, and once again, attempt to email the seller. Still nadda from the guy.

Finally I get another notice from eBay stating that the non-paying bidder dispute had been closed by the seller...but on only ONE of the books. And on the same day, I get an automated response from the seller thanking me for the order, but the price was still the same he'd sent me an invoice for. Confusion...confusion...

Then today I get the two books, along with a statement that showed his price, and not what I sent. So...anyway...along with that 4th. Adventure Comics reprint of A-man I recently received, and a copy of Vertigo Jam: Louder Than Noice I've also recently won, that should pretty much "do it" for that collection of the character.

A non-payment reminder is still on one of the books, but at least I do now have them. Lord knows that I won't be leaving any feedback until HE does!

Sunday, June 18, 2006

"Okay...It's Your Birthday"

So? He's 64. Big deal. Yeah, I really appreciate everyone reminding me of my own lost youth here! It's not that I don't wish Sir Paul McCartney A Happy Birthday, 'cause I do. But really, I think people are making just a little too much out of this whole thing.

And it's all because he wrote a song, "When I'm 64", that they're doing just that. If he'd never wrote such a song, everyone would probably be "celebrating" more when he turned 65...or sumthin'.

Lines such as, "Will you still need me, will you still feed me, when I'm 64?"

Well obviously we all still need Paul. He's the only great talent left from The Beatles these days. ('Course, it's also obvious that Heather doesn't need him, but that's a whole different story. Perhaps with her he should have remembered lyrics from another of his songs, which goes: "I should have known better with a girl like you!"*Ouch!*)

"Will you still feed me?" Are you kidding? You've got more money now than The Beatles ever made collectively. Best to feed ME a while, Paul, since I've bought and supported and fed you since 1964.

In fact, the above photo is from the cover of the monthly AARP magazine for their subscribers, which has a lengthly article on Paul and The Beatles, along with several photos. "Why" Paul would even NEED AARP to help pay health cost bills is beyond me, but still, he's a member. One thing I can say is that he looks every day of that 64 years. The cover photo is certainly not very flattering at all.

Then, there is also this question as to "who" Paul was speaking to in the lyrics of that little ditty? As also, there's a question as to the time frame in which these lyrics were first conceived? Could he had been speaking with his first wife? Could it had been a lover, instead? Lines such as, "Write me a postcard, drop me a line stating point of view"...could mean that it was someone he'd met on the road. Whomever it was, he was serious about his questions by stating "you'll be older too. Grandchildren on our knees..." meaning he wanted to wed and spend his life with this person. (I'm sure Paul won't tell.)

However....I rather like to think he was talking to his fans, who dearly loved him at the height of his popularity, and Paul wondered if 40 years down the road IF they'd still NEED him?

So, like I stated above, yes indeed we DO still need him, and I do wish Paul to be around when he's eighty-four (Ringo as well!)

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

"Tim Hildebrandt"

Somewhere around here still stored after 30 years is a set of fantasy posters by The Hildebrandt Brothers that Pizza Hut restaurants gave away back around 1978.

When I moved back to this area in 1979, I got a job at the local PH as a cook (and worked there for around 4 years). Over on the floor in a large, flat box was probably 100 such posters, still left over from a previous promotion. The boss told me to simply take what I wanted of them, and I recall getting maybe 10 sets, or sets as complete as I could as one of them was completely out, so I had one set with 5 of the 6 different posters, and maybe 9 sets of 4 other different ones.

Naturally, I kept the most complete of the sets, and gave away other sets to various friends I thought would be interested in them. Everyone really seemed to like them, whether they'd heard of the Hildebrandts or not. They had magicians and dragons; some rather tongue-in-cheek, and quite large and colorful.

But this wasn't the first time I'd personally took notice of the Hildebrandt work as I'd admired the Star Wars poster (for the first movie) a couple of years before that while still living in Bowling Green, KY. I recall looking at it for quite a while before I went in to see (what is now known as Episode 4: "A New Hope") it premiere there. Over the years I'd be able to instantly recognize their work on book jackets and paperbacks, etc., and I always thought it excellant.

It saddens me now to hear that Tim Hildebrandt, twin brother to Greg, has died at age 67. One more artist to add to the list of any future work to be greatly missed. We've already lost several fine artists and other professionals in the fantasy, sf and comic world this year. It seems the list just goes on, and on.


My goal wasn't reached by the end of last year to complete the four different series of DC's The Doom Patrol, but with yesterday's mail, I have now (6 months "late" of such a goal) completed such. With the 6 misc. issues I received I have the full runs of the 1960's series, the 1986 series, the 2000 and the 2004 ones. I believe I started this goal around 2-1/2 years ago, and naturally I began by obtaining all of the original issues, and you would think that those would have been the most difficult to locate. But, not really. If you have the cash to spend, those are all pretty much available. In fact, I spent just as much, if not more time, locating all of the Vertigo series. I had to purchase several "lots" to obtain just an issue or two, here or there, to fill in the holes in the run, and then finally use the "Buy It Now" option to grab up the remaining issues. I'm not even going to wager a guess at what I've spent to do so, but it's been a major amount of any funds I've had for the past couple of years for comics.

At least now I can concentrate on other titles and characters I'd like to obtain full runs of, along with some stuff I just want to read.

Saturday, June 10, 2006

"A Day to Ramble"

In my quest to complete sets of both Animal Man and Doom Patrol app.'s, I recently found a DC Comics Presents #78, as well as a Secret Origins #39 (an A-Man story by Morrison, that's continued in Animal Man #10). What with the copy of Adventure #420 that I've won just today (the fourth and final reprint of the character in that title), plus two issues of A-man that haven't arrived in the mail yet, I'll have completed his app.'s about as much as I want. My set will consist of a full run of his own title including the annual, Action 552 & 553, DC Comics Presents 77 & 78, Wonder Woman 267 & 268, the five first app.'s in Strange Adventures, plus the odd app. or two.

In Doom Patrol, I've also won the odd half dozen app.'s of the DC-Vertigo series, which will complete all four of the various DP series, although I'm still looking for maybe 15 odd app.'s/cameos/whatever in other books, mostly from 1980 to current.

After I get all of this stuff in and all, I may try to concentrate on some other things I'm looking for, such as the misc. DC app.'s of the Charlton characters. These titles would include sets of: Capt. Atom, The Blue Beetle, The Peacemaker & Son of Vulcan limited series, The Question and Question Quarterly, The Question Returns, Thunderbolt, and The L.A.W. lmt. series. Actually, I already have around half or so of these. Probably got at least 25 issues of Cap, all but 4 of BB, all but one of the Question Quarterly plus several issues of his own title, a complete set of The LAW, the first two issues of The Peacemaker, and 4 or 5 issues of T-Bolt. No way I'll try for all of the myriad app.'s in such things as Justice League, or Crisis. I'll just concentrate on the main titles.

As well, I need to concentrate on finally finishing out a set of the 1996 Supergirl series. I just need a couple having a set of 1-74 & 80, and 75-80 I have in the TPB reprint volume. Original issues that were reprinted still sell for a premium price, so I'll settle just for a reading set. The only other DC title I feel like I may be interested in trying for a set of would be the Supergirl app.'s in Adventure Comics (#'s 381 thru 424=44 issues). Currently I have around a dozen of those, but at least I already have all of the more expensive ones, so this might not be too out-of-reach to consider.

No way I'll try for all of the Action Comics app.'s. I have several (including a #252), so I'm happy with those. (Could use a 285, tho'.)

I wouldn't mind, as well, having any issues of the current Supergirl title that I don't have already, plus any of her Supergirl & The Legion issues, since I find the present incarnation of the maid of steel fairly interesting.

And on another note, I went through yet another full gallon of outside latex paint today in my efforts to finish work on this house. Got the rest of one full side today, and across the top of the roof on the back. Probably one more gallon would finish up outside, then I could work on the interior trim and door, etc.

Temperatures here today were close to 90 degrees, and I'm sure, exceeded 100 degrees on the roof where I was working. The shingles were too hot to touch with one's bare hand, and I could feel the heat burning my legs thru my jeans. Should make everything dry extra fast, however. Worked about 4 hrs. on that today. The exposed areas of my face and arms are at least 5 times darker than areas that were covered now from all of this outside work, and Summer hasn't even officially begun yet!

On a sad note, I heard today that Jack "Jaxon" Jackson, an underground cartoonist whose work I've always greatly admired, has passed away. His Comanche Moon series (which consisted of three different comics: "White Comanche", "Red Raider", & "Blood On the Moon") was always a personal favorite (reprinted in a collected edition in 1979 by Last Gasp/Rip Off Press=very fortunate IF you can find a copy), as he was a stickler for detail and historic accuracy. As with all great cartoonists and writers, any future work will be sorely missed.

"Take an old esoteric character and do something totally out of context with it just to boost sales and if it doesn't work who gives a sh*t" Department: You know...I'm growing so weary of the way a comic book company will take some old, beloved character, and turn them into something that would be totally out of their character just to get more books sold. DC & Marvel BOTH are guilty of such a practise. Marvel makes "The Rawhide Kid" gay, DC kills "The Blue Beetle" and has "Dr. Light" rape "The Elongated Man's" wife, Ray ("The Atom") Palmer's wife turns murderess, and now DC taking "Batwoman"...well....their new Batwoman... and making her gay as well. I'm sure such actions boost sales for these companies and keeps them afloat, but it sure kills the hell out of any continuity. The questions are: "Were titles such as the various Crisis series really necessary? Is Jack Kirby rolling over so many times in his grave due to The Rawhide Kid's situation that Jack's now burned thru his coffin and is half way to China?" (Bob Kane may be close behind him.) I know; it's a new story for a new audience, and old foggies like myself can't have the characters remain "silver-aged" forever...though, Lord, I wish they could.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

"Silly Rabbits

Today is June the 6th., 2006, or 06-06-06, or: 666.

If you add three six's together, you get 18, or on down to the base root of 9.

If you add 666 + 666, you get 1332, which if you add those numbers together, you also get 9.

If you multiply 666 x 666, you get 443,556, which if you add all of those numbers together, you get 9 as well.

Now...what does all of this mean? Not a damn thing. It's all BS, just like thinking that Friday the 13th. is bad luck. But there are a lot of sad people in this world that think it DOES mean something. Usually these are the same people that also believe there are such non-existent things affecting your life such as magic, or your daily horoscope.

Usually such things are believed by people who like to blame the government for various problems, or specific politicians, yet few of them ever went out and actively polled for the candidate of their choice, or know what the true political agendas were; they just don't like the man.

They are beliefs held by those who like to blame misfortune in life for their situations rather than themselves and their own personal short-comings, or neglect to make their own lives better, mostly due to laziness.

They are the sort that pray to God to answer all of their problems, rather than remembering that The Lord helps those who help themselves.

They are those who are sad about hunger or poverty in the world, but never actively participate in various programs to help the truely needy, or ever contribute to worthy charities.

Some of them are fully capable of working a regular-type job, but would rather sit on their butts and blame the world for their misfortunes, and collect a paycheck each month from Uncle Sam. And quite a few of them blame all of the problems in the universe on "someone else", rather than ever taking the responcibility of their own actions.

In the meantime, this puts a greater burden on those who ARE helping themselves and their families by holding down a real job, paying their taxes, and contributing to society as a whole. The "middle-class" America (in particular, the lower middle class) takes on more and more of the load in this country every day. The poor get assistance. The wealthy do not need such.

If there was ever a revolution in this country again, it would indeed be led by the middle-class who have grown weary of taking up the slack for others. It would be by the common man; not the begger or the industrialist.

It would be by those who have always played by the rules, and helped themselves and worked their hind ends off just to keep their heads above water in a country where prices continually soar, but wages rarely do.

They are the sleepers of America.

Saturday, June 03, 2006

"Some Time To Kill"

Read something that I thought pretty funny over on Mark Evanier's blog called "Memories of A Spud". Scroll about a third of the way down for a good laugh!

Well, I almost something I've always wanted: a full-sized VHS camcorder. Found one with the original case, charger and battery for the rediculously low price of five bucks at a local yard sale. Unfortunately, it seems to have a bad battery, so now I'm trying to find one for it. If anyone knows where exactly I might find one to fit a Magnavox CVL300 model, please let me know. I've had a camcorder for years, but when my wife bought one it was a mini-size, which doesn't use full-size VHS tapes and you have to put the recorded tape into an adaptor before you can play it. Too much hassle. I want one where you can just pop that baby into a VCR! Besides that, I've always wanted to make some sort of amateur flick, and I'd have to end up dupping one to the other, etc.

Got my storm windows repaired from all of that recent hail damage for the grand price of $91.00. Took them down myself and took them over to a local glass shop, then brought them back and did my own reinstalling of same just to save some cash. They look just fine! Used a glass patch on the one broken interior bedroom window where the hail had busted all the way through and you can barely even tell it. Went around all of them and recalked, plus before I reinstalled them I scraped down and repainted the exposed old window frames and cleaned the glasses. The side of the house which received the damage looks just about as good, or better, than before, but we've yet to have any shingles replaced. We still have money left over from the insurance settlement, but everyone that does roof work hereabouts are so behind in jobs that it may be a while yet before that work is done.

There was indeed a considerable amount of grit knocked loose from the shingles as I discovered when I attempted to clean it from the gutters. In fact, our current heat wave had already melted some into the gutters which I'll have to eventually pry out since it's reharded into some form of asphalt again.

Most of my painting outside of the house is done. I might need another gallon of white to finish up. Then I plan on repainting a lot of the interior house trim which has gotten stained mostly from the fumes of the ("so called" ventless) gas heaters we use in the Winter.

Oh yeah. We also have insurance back on the house again. Went with another insurance company (Farm Bureau) and got a much better deal and with additional coverage for a mere dollar more per payment. Since Planters cancelled our policy, I've spoken with a number of locals who also had them as their company and many have received similiar dissatisfying results as we.

Gotten in a LOT of stuff from various auction wins here lately. One lot had almost all of the issues of Animal Man and Doom Patrols I needed, bringing me down to just 6 issues of DP and 2 of A-Man, all of which I've used the "Buy It Now" options to purchase, so when they arrive, those two sets will finally be completed. In fact, that will complete all four series of Doom Patrol for me and I can concentrate on about 15 misc. cameos and app.'s in odd DC titles of that group from 1980 on. in a couple of 1950's Dell Comics with "Peanuts" appearances, plus the 2005 DC Bizarro World hardcover, which is a hoot! Crammed full of great artists and writers! Everyone outta buy one of those for some good chuckles!

Found the 1967 Whitman "Tarzan" hardcover BLB at the flea market last week. Not sure if that's actually Russ Manning art or maybe Mike Royer. Also bought a lot of about 80 misc. modern books there for a dime each (nothing special).

Finally watched "Catwoman", which is okay, but has absolutely nothing to do with the DC Batman character. Fair special effects; overall Viewing Grade about a C+, which is better than "The Punisher", or "The Hulk", but not as good as, say, "Daredevil".

And, at the moment, that's pretty much got me caught up on recent happenings. I've got this Saturday (today) and the next Saturday off from work, but have to work every Sunday this month. My blogging will remain rather sporatic.