Whoa, sorry I got so cranky about whales last night, everyone. It was a lonnnng week.
The heat finally broke last night, and suddenly it was a full 30 degrees cooler than it had been the night before. It reminded me of one of my favorite Chicago memories: that last summer there, when we had that horrible week long heat wave, culminating in three or four days of 100+ degrees and humidity that sweated the posters down off our walls. M. and I were living in that crappy little apartment on Carmen, with only one air conditioner, and by day three of that heat wave that air conditioner was making no difference. To breathe was to sweat. Blinking was an exertion. But all week the weatherman kept saying “the storms are coming, the storms are coming;” thunderstorms were supposed to finish off our heat wave and turn the moisture in the air into rain. Finally one afternoon, waiting for the bus on North Avenue, I could see the black clouds rolling over. One moment there was a cool breeze—the first in ages—and the next a clap of thunder like the sound of a vessel cracking. The rain started instantly and the seven or so people waiting for the bus with me broke into cheers, applause and laughter.
Why is everybody always yelling about how sensitive whales are? I feel like the whole world has this collective emotional boner over the idea of the largest animal on earth being extremely sensitive and fragile inside. Seriously. I would love to see a headline sometime like “Whale Destroys Town, Totally Fucks Shit Up”
Tagline: “Whales are enormous”
I’ve been sticking closer to home lately, after deciding, on my 817th consecutive BART trip across the bay, that I was worn out and needing to spend a little more time adoring my adopted hometown.
Don’t get me wrong—I’m a Chicagoan, to the core, and always will be. But I’m surprised at how much I’ve come to love Oakland. The two year mark is when I thought I’d be leaving the Bay area, and instead I am just getting my footing, so I am glad to be staying.
Reasons I love Oakland:
–People here are friendly and welcoming. I have all kinds of nice conversations on the bus, in lines, on bikes—people will just chat you up anywhere. Now that I take the bus every day, I know that drivers like to pull up alongside each other to shoot the shit along routes. People just love to talk here.
–It’s old fashioned. Old cars are everywhere. Barber shops and burger joints. Hardly a chain restaurant to be found.
–There are palm trees.
–It’s a tough place, but it has a big heart. Lots of crime, but people fight it. And say hi to each other on the street in the morning.
–The puny downtown. Aww! It’s so cute!
–People are chill. There’s a more relaxed feel than in San Francisco (or Chicago, for that matter). Sometimes after a long and active day in SF, I take the train back over, feel the warm sun and the breeze, and just feel pure relief.
–I love biking to the gym, or biking to my studio…
–Warm sunshine from the east in my apartment in the morning.
–Beautiful sunset from my kitchen table at night.
God, I could talk about feminism all day long. But since it can be hard to find another person who feels the same way,* I usually just think about it all day. Lately I have been thinking a lot about that favorite old chestnut: women and comics. Questions like, why don’t more women make comics? (A: They do, you just don’t notice them.) Is the comics world welcoming to women? (A: In theory, yes. In practice, no. Just like the rest of the world really.) What can I do to encourage women’s interest in comics? (A: you tell me!)
My top-of-the-head, really-should-be-getting-out-of-my-pajamas-and-over-to-the-gym thoughts on the subject—all thoughts that I would like to explore in the coming weeks in this blog—are:
–women aren’t represented enough in comics
–women aren’t as good as men at self promotion
–women have a hard time trusting their abilities in comics
You can think of this blog entry as a thesis statement.
PS, I have more sketchbook stuff to post, I just really really hate scanning, ok??!
*Unless you happen to be BFFs with the lovely Cuffington. Which I am, lucky me!