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4.0 the new non-web  (Previously... on 4.0)

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I'm trying my new Intuos from Wacom.  Drawing right into the computer is strange, but it works out.  I have decided to start a weekly comic strip.  Why?  Because the world asked me to!

Cartoon Strip Number One: He called himself Ishmael








Picasso didn't even draw my house!

06-27-11 (click on the images for larger pics)

Me vs. Picasso (round 1, me)

My brother Ed visits from New Hampshire.  We see Shakespeare's 'Titus' at Cal Shakes.  A group of people stands up and leaves after Livinia spits up blood.  The guy behind us says: 'Why did they wait 30 years to show this play?  It's awesome!'  The crowd reaction is decidedly mixed, but we love it.  It's gory.  It's funny.  It's racist.  It's Shakespeare.

We also see the Picasso exhibit at the de Young.  I learn the following:

 - Picasso had a lot of girlfriends and a few wives.  You can (if you really want to) look at Picasso's life merely as a reaction to which girlfriend he was 'going with' at the time.  'Going with Picasso' (in case you ladies are interested), might mean a trip to Italy, a secret rendez-vous in Paris, or it might mean cleaning up after him in his workshop.  It could also be a combination of all of those things, while his real wife waits at home.  His last girlfiend actually killed herself because she was so sick of being his clean-up girl (true story).

 - Since I spend the remainder of the week-end cleaning out the garage, I really think about Picasso.  Was he manically organized like me?  Or was a he pretty free and loose with his garage arrangement?  I'm thinking the latter.

 With all this in mind, I copy a few Picasso's paintings.  While doing this, I realize:

Modesty has no place in creativity.  If I'm painting, Picasso is my competitor.  If I'm writing music, then my tunes should be better than the Beatles, Ellington and The Walkmen combined.  I'd rather be arrogant and wrong, than modest and right.

Long live arrogance. 


Previously...  (Previously... on 4.0)

Dash = 17 Dash = 17
Dec on ice behind net
Confidence 2
Dash in goal
Dec in motion
The group

04-24-11 (click on the images for larger pics)

Confidence in the ice cathedral

We go to stick-puck night on Friday.  This starts at 6:30pm.  The boys are usually brushing teeth and heading to bed at this time.  Now they don hockey jerseys while I tie skates.  The rink is quiet (not like Saturday).  The high ceilings throw echoes around.  It's chilly inside, like a cathedral.  I see the other kids and gulp hard.  I mean, these dudes are big, and older, and better.  The guy with the old-school purple Kings jersey and 'Kopitar' on the back (figures!) must be 14.  The boys make friends with Kya, who seems friendly, but wears a Lucic shirt.  I'm worried.  These kids look mean.  I tap my boys on the shoulders, 'You guys look good.  You ready?  You look good.  If your ankles hurt, come see me, I'll tighten the laces.  You got your stick?  Good.  You guys look good.  You look great.'

The boys have a quiet determined look.  Not worried, anxious to get going.  Dash is tiny.  He is the Travelocity gnome, dressed in Bruins black and a 'Lucic' name on his back.  The top of his helmet does not quite reach the crossbar on the goal.  On the ice, he is unstoppable.  Kopitar continually steals the puck from him, but he patiently goes back and gets another one.  This repeats until I swear I'm going to go on the ice and punch that damn Kopitar kid.  I do a crossword - take my eyes away from the rink. 

Dec dishes some business (aka an elbow) to a kid who's much better and half a foot taller.  On the next rush, the kid lines him up in front of the net and deals him a rib-cruncher.  Dec gets up after the business and skates away - no reaction.  But no more trouble from Dec.  Message sent.  Message received.

It's 7:30pm.  Time to go.  We usually stay an hour, and this has gone on long enough.  Half the time, they don't even get the puck.  They're chasing kids around.  I yell to Dash - he ignores or doesn't hear me.  One of the coaches smiles at me: 'You want to get a message to little Lucic over there?'  I smile: 'When does this end, exactly?'  'This week's session has an extra hour - 8:30 we finish.'  I finally get Dash over and try to convince him it's time to go.  'No way!  I'm not leaving!  We're just getting started.  Daddy.  Did you see me playing net?  Did you see the save?  The other kids say it ends late this week.'  He then skates away.  He. Just.  Skates.  Away.

I go back to texting and cross-wording.  I can't read because it feels to geeky.  At 8:30, the lights stay on.  I look around.  I hear someone: 'They say the kids finish up at 8:45 tonight.'  8:45!  That'll be over two hours on the ice and hockey practice first thing tomorrow. 

But I love watching them.  I love the way they watch the other guys and imitate their moves.  I love the way they never complain.  Sometimes they shout to each other.  I only hear echoes.  The time goes by quickly.  I take pictures and know I embarrass them.

Boys need confidence.  They need to feel like they belong.  They need to be tested by other boys - even made fun of.  And when there is extra time at the rink, you need to let it go. 

The Zamboni comes out.  In the locker room, Dec says: 'I can't believe I just did that!  That was awesome!'  Leaving the rink, Dash says: 'Look at that purple building!'  They have never seen downtown at night and the building lights amaze them.  They skated with players who were better, older, and bigger, and they were able to hang.  The night rewards them.

We look back at the cathedral of ice and Dash says: 'See you tomorrow morning, Mr. Hockey Rink!'