August 13th, 2010


A Pithy What?

Say what you like about James Joyce, he was a man who had a knack for epiphany. And last night, as I occasionally do, I had one of my own. It wasn’t a profound moment of sound and fury, no tears or anything like that, just a sudden but conclusive realization, more or less out of the blue.

That realization was, “Yes, of course I’m going to Further Confusion in January. Duh.”

Now, that may not sound like much — after all, I’ve been going to FC pretty regularly since the mid-00′s (the oughts?), but it carries with it a lot more significance than you might think.

You see, I have been seriously contemplating the issue back and forth for some time now. FC, while I enjoy it, is often a giant production, involving as it does a trip to the far side of the country and several days in a not-exactly-cheap hotel. In order to pull it off, I need to be fairly confident that my time at the table will justify the expense, and with the winding down of Suburban Jungle and the recurring lack of interesting new products to show, sales have been wobbly compared to their one-time heights. To go to FC means committing myself to creating new things to have at the table, getting back into the artistic swing, and coming up with ways to be generally awesome so people will want to buy my stuff.

There is another factor, a sort of “self identity” thing that’s harder to nail down. I love the furry scene and have since I first came across it, but it’s only one aspect of my larger self. There are lots of other things I also want to do with my creative career, but the success of Suburban Jungle (and the attendant demands on my time) pushed everything else to the side for so long that I lost touch with a lot of those interests. One of the reasons I decided to end SJ was so that I could do something else for a while. But within the furry community, SJ is my claim to fame, leading to a sort of “Without this, what am I?” situation. I haven’t really worked out an answer to that one yet, but really, it doesn’t matter anyway. If I keep moving forward with new things, the question will answer itself eventually.

What surprised me the most about this particular epiphany was the cold matter-of-factness of it all. If you’ll tolerate a bit of Anthropomorphic Freudianism here, it went something like this:

SUPEREGO: By the way, we’re going to FC. Start making that happen.

EGO: We are?

SUPEREGO: Of course we are. You’d never be satisfied if we didn’t.

EGO: You realize what that entails, right? Ten hours on a plane, five days away from home, jet lag?


EGO: We need a book or something to have at the table.

SUPEREGO: That’s why I’m telling you now. The books are overdue anyway. Get on ‘em. Besides, Sue’s working on NeverNever again, so it’s the perfect time to get Attack of the War-Cats into production and drum up interest. Both books need to be done by next May anyhow, for Confuzzled.

EGO: Okay then, decision made! I’ll alert the media, so to speak.

SUPEREGO: You do that.

ID: Will you two shut up? I’m trying to sleep here.

No sturm, no drang, just a matter-of-fact certainty. This actually pleases me quite a bit, because it’s the same matter-of-fact certainty that made me pick up a pencil and just start drawing SJ one day. I always consider that to be a sign that I’m on the right track, and it’s a sensation that I’ve been sorely missing for some time now. “This is the way it is, and this is the way it will be. So go to it.”

I guess I know how I’ll be spending my evenings and weekends for the next few months, now! [1]

-The Gneech

[1] Interestingly enough, a built-in assumption seems to be that I’m going to be writing as well. I’m not sure how I’m going to fit it all in, but Superego doesn’t seem concerned about it, and he generally knows what he’s doing.

Originally published at You can comment here or there.


I Knew This Was Coming

I figured that with Buddha getting better, job deadlines met, and everything slowly returning to sanity, that this was going to happen at any moment, and I was right: Dad's in the emergency room again.

Crisis fatigue has set in, universe. I've finished playing that game. Perhaps you'd like to go ahead and make the car break down and throw an unexpected tax bill or something our way, just to get it out of your system? Go ahead, we'll wait until you're done.

But then we're just gonna keep on going. Maybe eventually you'll get as tired of this game as we are.

-The Gneech
Kero asleep


Well, my dad is in ICU, but seems to be in decent enough shape for all that. Although in a constant state of fading in and out from the meds, he's relatively coherent and occasionally has enough oomph left in him to bark, "I want to get the hell out of here!" So that's hopeful. :) Thanks as always for the good thoughts!

As for my earlier "Smite me, oh mighty smiter!" post, I wasn't exaggerating when I said I was expecting something of this nature. As a matter of fact, I had in my mental tally book predicted that it would hit either during or just before Dragon*Con, so as to do the most damage, but apparently the universe got its shot off a little too early. Looking back at the past several years (as chronicled by filler posts to Suburban Jungle), summer is characterized by depression and recovery (had that), Buddha health issues (had that), and my dad going to the hospital. So it was due.

Hopefully this year's harvest of crap is out of the way now, so I'll have a nice, smooth run between here and the annual Get Sick Just Before FC.

In any case, it's bedtime. Good night, world, and have an awesome tomorrow. :)

-The Gneech