Saturday, March 27, 2010

"Post No. 691"

R.I.P. Dick Giordano (1932 - 2010)

Sunday, March 21, 2010

"Post No. 690"

I had some luck selling some older comics this past month and, par usual, couldn't resist picking up a couple of books I wanted around that I didn't currently have in my collection.

One of these is a Charlton Blue Beetle #1 (1964). I suppose the special memory this book holds for me was from those early teen years when I'd stay around my Great Aunt Katy Kerr's little grocery store in the town I grew up in and read the comic books she sold. As with many little groceries in this area at that time, a local wholesale distributor, Goodman Candy Company, would buy the comic book returns from Haxby News out of Bowling Green, Kentucky, and then re-sell them in lots of 20 to these groceries where they then usually sold them for a nickle apiece.

I'd sit on the top of Aunt Katy's Coca-Cola cooler and read through the comics on those hot Summer days. There'd be just globs of Charlton, Super-IW Comics, Archies, Harveys and the like. In fact, my first exposure wasn't from a Charlton comic on Blue Beetle, but rather an IW-Super title called "The Human Fly" which reprinted some of the original Fox Publications issues from the 1940's.

Can't say I was overly-impressed the first time I saw the character. The artwork was crude, and then you had this 1940's style of writing that was different enough to make me remember the character, but not to make him one of my favorites. Even so, I read them, and the Charlton issues too with their similiar crude artwork, and it's because of the enthusiasm from readers of "BB" that Charlton eventually revived their best character up to that date: "Captain Atom".

Fans had remembered him from appearing in Space Adventures #'s 33-40, 42 circa 1960-61. It was a hard series to not be able to remember fondly due to Steve Ditko's great artwork and it was his first attempt at a super-hero strip.

So in 1965 the company decided to bring him back in a series of reprints in one of their fantasy titles, Srange Suspense Stories #75. Within 4 issues the title changed to "Captain Atom" and once more on board was Steve Ditko producing new artwork. So the second book I purchased was another copy to have of that issue which I can remember picking up originally at Willis's Drug Store, attacted by it's unusal cover layout of an insert of the good Captain surrounded by a tannish-colored cover; quite different from what I usually saw on the stands. I followed every Charlton super-hero from then on until their end at that company and retain a great love for the work Charlton produced to this day.

Naturally I was familiar with Steve Ditko. And I was familiar with his earlier work at Charlton as I have previously sited that I considered his best work to be at Charlton from 1957-1961, previous to any super-hero work ("Spider-man" in particular) he did at Marvel Comics.

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

"Post No. 689"

Been pretty busy today. Started off early this morning when, after charging my lawn mower battery, I took that back down to mom's (where I had the mower), put it back in, put some gas in the thing and tried to start it up. Naturally it still wouldn't start, so I had to charge it some more, and finally got that to running. But then, I couldn't get it to move no matter what gear I tried putting it in until finally it took off perpectually in, I think, 3rd. gear. Now, even if it's in neutral, it's still in 3rd. Which I can drive it in 3rd. and mow in such once I get the pullies replaced on the deck. I eventually drove it up the street to my own house, parked it in the rear and covered it until I can get someone over to look at it.

Then I started going back through all of those 1970's to modern comics I wanted to sell 'as a lot", pulling out some that I decided to keep or re-read, combining some into better boxes and eliminating other older, torn-up boxes, which made some more space. But right in the middle of that I got a phone call from a guy that had promised me some lumber to use to replace my mom's handicap ramp. So I stop that for a while to go get the lumber (which turns out to be much more than I think I'll actually need), getting that stacked down at mom's and covering it up to protect it, then back home again where I finished with the comics.

Then I made a list of what I kept, put them on/and corrected lists on floppys and CDs, and by then it was time to go to the grocery plus pick up some medicine for mom.

My wife, Debbie, and I did that, came back home and put things away, then took mom's medicine down to her and visited for a little while, got her mail, and finally back home again.

By then it was 4 P.M., so it's been one very full day.

I only work a half a day tomorrow (12PM to 5 PM), so I probably won't get much done there. I'm off again from work Thursday, but that's the day I have to take mom to her heart doctor some 45 miles from here, and the way the weather looks I'll probably be driving up there and back in the rain. Now that it's starting to warm up I can see a very wet Spring ahead that, when one does get to mow the lawn, the grass will be 8 inches tall (just like last year).

And I've gotten around to finishing all the artwork in pencils to the 4th. issue of that comic book series I'm working on, plus I got the cover completely penciled and inked for that issue plus #5's. Going to start work on the pencils on the story for #5 in a few days.

Got those issues of The Authority I won on an auction read, plus I read quite a bit of 20 misc. 1966 - 1973 Charlton mystery titles (Ghostly Tales, Dr. Graves, Midnight Tales, etc.) that I bought at the local flea market last weekend. Lots and lots of great artwork in those by the likes of Steve Ditko, Pay Boyette, Pam, Wayne Howard and Jim Aparo. I even found a letter of comment in one of the issues of Ghostly Tales from 1969 that I'd gotten published and forgot about (neat little surprize)!

Debbie, and I set up at the local flea market this past weekend and enjoyed the 60 degree weather, sunshine and fresh air and had a good time looking around and selling things. I even sold a box of duplicate comics I took down there and she sold many crafts, bringing us an extra $100. or so bucks, so it was well-worth the effort (more so than many a yard sale we've attempted). Also it was nice to get to spend a day together on a project.

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

"Post No. 688"

This government decision to charge radio stations such an increased amount towards the end of March appears to me the end of yet another freedom in this country. Local radio stations have already stated they would cease playing music due to this cost. Some are closing completely down. Is this the end of a golden era of enjoyable music? And how many djs and other radio employees are going to lose their jobs here now when this country needs to increase employment rather than add to it?

Well, today's my wife's birthday, born on March 2nd., 1953, she's 2 years, 4 months and 15 days younger than me. Happy Birthday, Debbie!

In other things...Business at work has picked up and we've had some good weekends. Monday's sales even beat last Friday's. People are perhaps a little less frightened about spending some extra cash they've gotten from their tax returns.

I've even won/purchased acouple of lots of modern comics from various auction sites here of late, getting a dozen or so issues of the current Supergirl title that's pretty much got me caught up to issue #50 or so, and another 2 dozen misc. issues of various The Authority (Wildstorm) series, which I've yet to read due to time.

Had to cancel all of my dental appointments for the month. The money just isn't there to take care of having the work done which involves having a lower plate made and two teeth extracted; an amount of $500. I had the extra cash put back for this work, but my wife still hasn't found a job, still hasn't received an unemployment check (which should have been here three weeks ago and with no explanation for social services), and our own tax return hasn't arrived, so this will just have to be delayed and the money used for living expensives until "better times".

Looks like Spring may finally make an appearance soon. Temperatures here in S-Central, Ky. seem to be be settling a bit and perhaps the coldest part of this Winter is past.