Perhapablog

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

off on a tangent...

okay...

technically it's still wednesday--for another 38 minutes, anyway--and so i'm still holding to my monday, wednesday, friday plan...
but just barely...

been working this week with my pal, jeff mccluskey, one of the nicest guys i know and easily the most laid back. jeff is a true artist when it comes to woodworking and crafts stuff out of wood that makes my jaw drop open sometimes. when he needs an extra pair of hands or a big job comes along, he usually gives me a call 'cause i love hangin' around with him and i dig the change of pace. NOTHING gets my imagination working like a change of venue and a different type of work to focus on. plus, did ya hear me say that i love hangin' around with this guy.

work is never work with jeff--it's always fun and even when things don't look like they're going right...we're fine.
currently, we're working on an ENORMOUS pair of oaken gates for a big mansion in millbrook. lots of structural considerations and lots of detail. yesterday we took a break at the end of the day to deliver a kitchen island--the heaviest piece of furniture i have ever lifted!

i'm telling you all this for two reasons;

1.) that's why i don't have the follow-up ghost stories blog today, and

b.) i'm having a ball!

i really think that it's important to get away from what you do now and then. do something else, something you might not even know how to do, maybe even something that scares you a little. it amazes me how recharged and refreshed i was coming home from work yesterday and how focussed ands eager to write i was when i got here!

that's all i gotta say. jeff's a great friend and we have a lot of fun together.
now i gotta go and write. i can't wait!

nothing really to post except this actual article from a 1955 good housekeeping.




and this picture that i think is cute/funny.
even if he's' tellin' noob to shut up...




i checked out muchosucko.com and they've got dirty pictures there. so if you don't wanna see those, don't go.

see ya friday!
todd

ps--whatcha gonna be for halloween?

Monday, September 25, 2006

the dark scribble

okay...

i am juggling a lot of things this week and so i'm gonna fall back on tipping you all to a story from elsewhere--since nobody sued me over 'the dump creature' story...

ghost stories very rarely get me. they've gotta have something more to them than a barely seen phantasm skirting across the porch or a weird feeling when i stand in this corner of the hallway. i need there to be a story, someone describing an actual experience or a strange new angle to it that we have never heard before. i think this one does that.

i picked this up on paranormal.about.com back in february and have come back to it several times over the months. it's a little bit more than your average ghost story but hopefully it's enough to get you all to write in with ghost stories of your own. or that you've heard.
i've got one (that happened to a friend of mine), but i'm gonna save it 'til wednesday when everyone else starts logging in.

here it is. hope ya like it...

The Dark Scribble_by Mary
We are a military family and we move every three years. We moved into military housing at Ft. Richardson, Alaska. My younger child started playing peek-a-boo with something in that house and would become so excited when "it" would appear and become sad and say "bye bye" in a very depressed manner when it would leave. This happened only in an upstairs bedroom along a corner where two walls came together and upward to the corner of the ceiling. It also happened in the finished basement area we turned into a TV room. Here "it" would appear in the corner of the ceiling as well. I found it to be odd, but didn't disturb the activity or discourage it.
As my son aged and began speaking, I asked him who was there and he would say, "the black man" and that "he's nice! He plays with me, mommy!" I asked him what kind of clothes he was wearing and he became sort of confused and said he doesn't have on clothes. Jokingly, I said, "He's naked?" He said, "No! He is black like a crayon. He's a scribble." I asked him what color his eyes were and he said, "He doesn't have a face."
My husband was uneasy about this and said he did get an eerie feeling a couple of times when he as in the basement watching football. He also witnessed my son playing peek-a-boo and laughing wildly and sticking his tongue out at something in the corner where the ceiling met the walls. My husband never saw it.
I did eventually see this thing. I have problems with my lower back and I was stretched out on the floor upstairs in another bedroom with my legs on a couple of pillows. I was trying to fall asleep and I saw this black shape, which moved like it was electrical or under a very quick strobe light. It moved very irregularly. It was as tall as a three-year-old child (but bulkier), but its lower body was far too short. It was as if its legs were through the floor. It moved (without any sound) from my feet then along side me and it stopped about where my elbow/lower ribs were. It stood there. I just had my eyes opened only enough to watch it without it noticing me as awake. I was in awe, but at the same time I had this irrational fear it might see me. I had that same feeling that makes children hide under the covers when they think something is in their room. (I was 32 years old.) It gave me the feeling it was mischievous because it moved its arms sort of like it was dancing. (It was only a silhouette – no distinguishable hands or facial features. My son described it best. It was solid black sort of flame like in movement, but in irregular motion.) It didn't give me an impression that it was evil or trying to harm me.
It leaned over me like it was bending at its waist and I felt all the fine hairs around my face lift and dance like with static electricity. I could feel the hairs sway! I also felt the hairs on my arms lift. It seemed to be looking at me, but it never looked at my face. This solid black mass leaned over me and it reached through me with its arm and then it continued to lean across me and it seemed to go through me and the floor. It vanished. I did not feel anything at all. No pain or weird sensations other than the static electric sensation. I was in such amazement that I didn't move for a minute half out of fear from the experience, but with enough curiosity to wonder if it was going to come back through the floor.
I felt sort of shaken up by the whole event and then had second thoughts about it coming back through the floor. I went downstairs and told my mother about the incident and she said it was strange and she always thought my son was seeing something we were not seeing. (My mother had recently moved in with us and she said she felt uncomfortable in that house from day one like someone was watching her and following her around.) She nor my husband ever saw it and I never saw it again.
We moved about six months after I saw it and I have always wondered if anyone else who has moved into the house ever experienced anything. I even considered sending a letter to ask, but never have!

smell ya later!
todd

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Friday, September 22, 2006

stuff i love/stuff i hate

okay...

this is gonna be really quick 'cause i don't want this to be all about me.
but it is...

thanks to everyone who sent me contacts or links or whatever for a message board. somewhere out of all of them i'm sure we'll have a message board up and running here soon. and that'll be great!

i forget where i got this picture--dani, i think--but i love it. i think it's funny.




if ya missed it, ya gotta look just below the letters.

now apparently the story is that, in the (implied: dirty) mexican village where this lettuce was packaged, the water they were washing the lettuce with had polywogs or tadpoles in it and the frog developed in the bag. why not. i think there's enough air in there for a frog. plus lots to eat. and it's moist...
of course. i could take a picture of a frog in a bag too, so...
but i want to believe that it grew up on the bag. the frog in the plastic bubble.

here's some other stuff i love:

~watched the premiere of "my name is earl" last night and laughed my butt off. "randy, those aren't helium balloons."
"at least he's tryin' to thinka somethin'. it's not his fault if he ain't good at it."

~watched the premiere of "the office" last night and think i winced more than i laughed, but still funny.

~pez has a cool new black skeleton out for halloween! it is goofy-cool! go get one!

~re-reading all the old nick cardy teen titans in the black and white dc showcase edition! love nick! love the titans! love the dc comics from the late 60s!



~i would usually never listen to her music in a million years and yet i am transfixed by the jessica simpson "a public affair" video! i can't stop watching it! it's so funny! i even bought the video off itunes!! andy dick--who usually gets pretty obnoxious after awhile--is hilarious! (i realized later that this is because he doesn't speak) and the song is so catchy--it sticks in my head all day--which is weird 'cause i hated it 20 years ago when it was called "holiday". i think this song contains subliminal messages. i think it's trying to change me. i used to feel that way about "karma chameleon" too. (but i didn't turn gay. i WANTED to, but it just didn't happen.)

~dani definitely DID send me this...check out the mother's day video when ya get a chance...

http://barney.gonzaga.edu/~lbarats/videos.html

~now that the weather is a little cooler, jake wants to play with the ball and run more--and so do i.

things i hate:

~just one--that acdc/audrey hepburn commercial for the gap. it actually offends me. i have to turn it off. i dig acdc and i definitely dig audrey hepburn, but this ad just disgusts me. i think it's a horrible diservice to her memory. and acdc's.
those marketing $#%@s!

okay, so tell me what YOU love and hate...

okay, i gotta go!
have a great weekend!
todd

Thursday, September 21, 2006

this 'n' that...

okay...

about a month or so back i finished up this licensing job i did for marvel.
i LOVE doing licensing jobs 'cause they're good money, i get to use the 'classic' versions of the characters (no new spidey-armor costume or bizarre line-up of the avengers), i get to usually be a little more creative with the story, and the editors, nicole wiley and john barber are absolutely terrific to work with!
so amtrak wants a comic book for the kids on the train. could it feature spider-man and the fantastic four? sure! could it include some of the information that we want to convey to our young passengers about the wonders of travel by train? no problem! could it be action-packed and full of superheroic fun? our specialty!
oh, did we also mention that, because we don't want to scare anybody, there can be absolutely NO DANGER to the train or the passengers riding on amtrak?
no...danger...?!
dude, that's what comics are all about! no danger? no urgency? no story.
did i mention that another thing i love about it is the challenge?
we got it done. and i'm really happy with it.
if you ever run across one on an amtrak train, lemme know.

so i was tryin' to make sure that i was posting on mondays, wednesdays, and fridays and then yesterday just swept right by me. sorry. i've been doing lots of little things the past week or so. i designed a t-shirt for my good friend, paul, who is a prison guard and is organizing their first annual pig roast. just like the amtrak thing above, paul told me pretty quick, "oh, yeah, don't put the pig in a cop hat. those guys'll take offense." man, that's was exactly what i was gonna do. when you tell me a buncha cops are gonna have a pig roast...oh, we laughed.

also, i'm trying to rearrange my studio. it means organizing, filing, and getting rid of comics. no probelm. but here, where i've moved the computer for, what i hope will be, easier writing and better inspiration, there's the slightest dip in the hardwood floor, you couldn't see it with the naked eye, but when i sit down to type, the chair needs to be just so or it rolls you back away from the desk. maybe it's telling me something...?



and mike (wieringo) and i have been finishing up mike's MODERN MASTERS interview. i think it came out pretty well for my first pass as interviewer. but i'll let you be the judge. the book, MODERN MASTERS vol.9, will be out in november/december and will feature a lot of mike's gorgeous work including some never before seen stuff and some of mike's original designs for tellos!



and while i thank you all for your patience in using our comments section on this blog to communicate, craig and i are desperately hunting for a message board somehwere so that we can all be better in touch in discussing the weird, the wild, the mundane, and even maybe the perhapanauts! but craig is swamped with work and house and family and i'm an idiot. so if anyone should have a line on where we could find a message board for this perhapanauts website, we'd really love to hear about it. you can tell me through the comments section or feel free to 'e' me at todd@perhapanauts.com thanks!

gotta go! stuff to do!
smell ya later!
todd

Monday, September 18, 2006

mel's hole

okay...

let's say that you just got a high-speed internet connection.
and let's say that you now find yourself looking to check out alla the neat things that people have told you to check out over the past couple years but couldn't because your hook-up was too slow.
and let's just say that you're fascinated by the bizarre and the paranormal and you write this comic book about some of that weird stuff and that, when you go to conventions, you have some really great conversations with readers about alla this stuff, relating what you've seen or heard about and listening to what they've experienced.
and let's say that one of these readers turns you on to this great radio program called 'coast to coast a.m.'--on-line subscriptions available--where they talk about all this weird kinda stuff and that "you should definitely be on there!"

well, i'm not. not yet anyway...

but it is a very cool show and, though my curiosity isn't piqued by ALL of their topics, i'd say that, so far, about 95% of it has. them's pretty good odds. they cover all manner of weird and interesting stuff, conspiracy theories and whatnot. but of course my favorite subjects are the strange happenings and even stranger creatures.

the site is at www.coasttocoastam.com and they give you a few sample shows to tune into before you pay the $6 to subscribe. the one that got me hooked, though, wasn't even on their site. it was the story of mel's hole and, if you've got a little time to kill or wanna download it to your ipod, you can hear the whole deal at http://turbo.peteronline.net/melshole/

see, it goes like this. mel waters is this guy who owned some property in washington state, near the town of ellensburg. on the property was this hole, about 9 feet across, that was known around the area as this deep pit that farmers and townsfolk used to use as an easy way to dispose of their larger appliances, machinery, and dead livestock.

turned out, it was an honest-to-God bottomless pit.

mel lowered a line down there 15 miles and it still didn't hit bottom.

15 MILES!

mel first discussed the hole publicly on coast to coast in 1997. shortly after that, the government came and took his property away from him. the area is now restricted and blocked from view by topographical satellites.

the story goes on from there; strange things happening, coins and belt buckles, an indian tribe contacting mel about a hole of their own on a reservation in nevada where things get even more science-fictiony...'cause things came OUT of that hole...

listen for yourself and let me know what you think. when i was a kid, the idea of a bottomless pit was scary because you would fall and fall and fall and fall...

supposedly there's one in egypt, too.

that's it.
todd

Friday, September 15, 2006

retablo exvoto

okay...

so every once in a while i type in 'chupacabra' or 'chupacabras' into ebay to see if they're selling something new that i might be interested in. there are countless offers for any one of the three or four (bad) chupacabra movies made in the last 4 years or so, imani coppola's 1998 chupacabra titled cd (which my best friend and ex-girlfriend dani actually owned and dug--i'll hafta ask her if i can borrow that...), the odd chupacabra t-shirt or mexican wrestling mask, copies of scott corrales' excellent book which chronicles the chupacabra flap in puerto rico back in '95/'96...even a mummified chupacabra 'claw'! occassionally there are some other--and in some cases more sensational--entries; the chupacabra embryo in a jar, the way cool, chinese-made chupacabra figure, even a weekend at a texas ranch for a chupacabra safari!
ebay is funny.

the other day i saw this.




and here's the legend, the translation of the story, written on the tin.

RETABLO EXVOTO SIGHTING OF THE CHUPACABRAS

Size: 7-1/2 x 13 in_Mexican oil exvoto painting on tin dedicated to the Lady of San Juan.
The story translates into: _"Ramona Telles went to the outhouse one night and there she saw the Chupacabras and as she ran away she directed her prayers to the Virgen de San Juan and when she came back none of her lambs were hurt"

it really got me--i bookmarked it--going back from time to time to see what it was going for. i kept thinking, well, maybe i would bid $20 on it! it was really fascinating and it would be a great novelty to add to my already weird collection.
then it was going for $23. i thought, okay, maybe i'll bid $25.

then it went to 30 and i thought, okay, this is a real work of art, an oil painting! plus, her name is ramona TELLES--that's really close to tellos, so it has an almost cosmic significance, combining the two creations that i am most proud of. i could go to 35.

and 40.

...

i won it at just under $50.

stupid addictive ebay.

don't get me wrong. i dig it that much, feel that it was well worth it, can't wait to hang it up...but that ebay'll get ya, boy.

have a great
weekend!
todd

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

choopie updates and my favorite 911 call



okay...

to get back on a m-w-f schedule (which is what i'd been shooting for these past few weeks if ya hadn't noticed...) i thought i'd post these seemingly random bits of news, info, and pictures. check it!

first of all, it was great to hear everybody's enthusiastic comments and praise about the amazing job that andrew is doing on craig's choopie statue! i wanted to be sure to keep ya posted on all the developments as they came in! i think that it's just incredible!







(andrew said that if the shoulders look a little broken that's 'cause he decided to adjust the arms for a more action-packed pose! it'll get all smoothed over soon...)


next here's my favorite 911 call. i'm a sucker for this kinda stuff; 911 calls, stupid criminals, and 'headlines' on the tonight show is always funny (and exactly as much jay leno as i can stand in a week). i just came across this one and had to share it. hope you think it's as funny as i did...

My Favorite 911 Call

Dispatcher: “Ambulance Emergency line.”
Man: “Hello?”
Dispatcher: “Yes.”
Man: “Who is this?”
Dispatcher: “This is the ambulance emergency line. Do you have an emergency?”
Man: “I need an ambulance.”
Dispatcher: “Who is this?”
Man: “Uh, Joe.”
Dispatcher: “Okay, Joe. Where do you need us?”
Man: “I’m in the m____f____in’ phone booth.”
Dispatcher: “Okay, what’s the address there?”
Man: “Hold on.”
Dispatcher: “Okay, sir, did you call through 911?”
Man: “No.”
Dispatcher: “Okay, Joe. I need a location. What street are you on?”
Man: “Uh, I’m in the m____f____in’ phone booth at the Stop & Go, Yeah, that’s it. I’m at the m_____f____in’ Stop & Go. On, uh, wait a minute. On, uh, Howsmith…what’s the m____f____in’ street? Howsmith and Corville and Howsmith. At the m____f____in’ Stop & Go.”
Dispatcher: “Howsmith, Corville and what?”
Man: “Hold on.”

(The Dispatcher continues typing the information. There is a pause.)

Man: “It’s Joe.”
Dispatcher: “Uh huh.”
Man: “How ‘bout it. Let me see. Coffee, Comfee?”
Dispatcher: “Comfey?”
Man: “There you go. There you go. I’m in the m____f____in’ phone booth. Let me tell you what. I’m in the…I’m going down the m____f____in’ road driving my car minding my own g__d___ business, and a m____f____in’ deer jumps out and hits my car.”
Dispatcher: “Okay, sir. Are you injured?”
Man: “Let…Now, let me tell you. I get out and pick the m____f____in’ deer up. I thought he was dead. I put the m____f____in’ deer in my backseat, and I’m driving down the m____f____in’ road and minding my own business. The m____f____er woke up and bit me in the back of my g__d____ neck, and he bit me and he done kicked the sh__ out of my car. I’m in the m____f____in’ phone booth. The deer bit me in the neck. A big m____f____in’ dog came up and bit me in the leg, and I hit him with the m____f____in’ tire iron, and I stabbed him. I stabbed him with my knife. So, I got a hurt leg, and the m____f____in’ deer bit me in the neck. And the deer…the dog won’t let me out of the m____f____in’ phone booth, ‘cause he wants the deer. Now, who gets the deer, me or the dog?”
Dispatcher: “Okay, sir. Are you injured?”
Man: “Yeah, m____f____in’ deer bit me in the neck. Hold on. Let…Hey! The m____f____in’ dog is biting me! Hold on! The m____f____in’ dog is biting me! Hold on! G__d___ it! Get out of here! Hold on! The m____f____in’ dog is biting my ass. Hold on!”

(Caller hangs up.)

that's it!
see ya friday!

todd

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

back from baltimore

okay...

well, that was an AWESOME weekend...!

craig and i had NO IDEA that there were so many awesome perhapanauts readers in the baltimore area! it was so nice to meet all of you and i really hope that you'll come by the blog here and get vocal with me and the boyz!
really, we were stunned at how many people came around, telling us how much they liked the book, how much they were looking forward to second chances, and how fast we SOLD OUT of the first blood trades that we brought with us!!

first off, the show was masterfully organized by our pal, marc nathan, and his well oiled machine. not the best of times to be wandering around and catching up with each other, marc and i always make it happen. during this however he's always being bombarded with questions and requests from his crew and he just casually spats out a firm and decisive answer and then we go back to talking about how easily spidey finished off the shocker in amazing 152. he's that kinda guy.

marc and i also talk about other stuff--we both drive hondas (except for marc) and we both have jack russells--and we initially bonded over very similar relationship scenarios, but marc is in 7th heaven in that regard these days as he recently became engaged to his...well, his fiance now, right?, shelly! she's a doll and here's a picture of us...



did a couple panels during the show; one on comics for kids, in which dan slott--the guy who makes me laugh every month with his hilarious and exciting she-hulk--made me blush recalling a scene i wrote in sensational spider-man lo, those many years ago.

the other panel i was honored to be the moderator for was one featuring the legendary john romitas, junior and senior! i'm friends with both of these fantastic artists and i was so flattered to be asked to introduce them and keep their panel going. and i wish i had been able to stick around and get a picture with them, but i hadda run and get to another panel...

...which was about collaborating in comics, where ringo (mike wier-) and i were on a panel with mark waid, barry kitson, and kurt busiek (pictured in that order--mike's the one lookin' at me...) our former gorilla brothers! (actually, once a gorilla brother, always a gorilla brother!)




though craig hadda cut out saturday afternoon to go to a friend's stupid wedding, it was basically the four of us hangin' around all weekend; randy, mike, craig, and me. randy green is a good friend of ours, an amazing artist, a funny, funny guy, and he and i once did some cool cable and impulse stories together! and he's got this great southern accent...which we make fun of...



i scored some sweet shwag at the show too! a couple back issues of amazing spider-man that i intend to give to a friend of mine, a skull the troll doll from our pal, scott kurtz's hysterical pvp, art adams sketchbook (thank you, rico!), an exclusive baltimore comicon glass featuring mary jane watson's classic (yes, marc--THE GREATEST LINE IN COMICS BOOKS! EVER!) "face it, tiger--you just hit the jackpot!" with that also classic shot by john romita, sr., a "friends of cho" shirt from frank himself (he threw it at me), and a stuffed truman the duck from frank's beautiful strip, liberty meadows!

but by far, the single greatest thing about this show was our very own brian mulcahy! brian was easily a one man sales force and craig and i realized that we sold more stuff while we were AWAY from the table than when we were there...all because a' brian!!! using the incredibly popular choopie butt cards as his opening, brian managed to exert some kinda crazy gravitational force on passers-by, drawing them into the table and then singing the praises of the perhapanauts 'til, somehow, they found themselves walking away with a trade. or a not gigantic color special. or a dossier. or a perhapa-sketches sketchbook. it was truly amazing.
also, he set up and knocked down our table in a quicker and more efficient way than either craig or i coulda thought of in a year of shows. we got there just a little late sunday morning and brian had been there and set the whole thing up for us. too early for me--i'm not a morning person--i was confused for awhile before i was able to see how smoothly everything was set up and moving.
anyway, here's to brian--and a picture of brian--who is prob'ly on the phone with his wife, but i like to think is talking to some of the elves he's got on retainer to make these miracles happen--thanks for EVERYTHING, man! you helped us out SO much!



finally, here's a picture of mike.
whenever i see will ferrell i think of mike. mike has such a great face; so many (funny) expressions.
i caught this at the perfect time.
i call it "the sucker."
here this guy had asked mike how much for a sketch.
mike said $20 and the guy said that he had no money.
the guy walked away.
he came back a little later and wanted to confirm the price, $20? he says.
mike, huge heart, feeling sorry for him, quietly says that he'll do it for him for 10.
the guy is thrilled.
mike does the sketch. it's absolutely gorgeous.
mike gives it to the guy.
the guy gives mike a 50 and asks if he has change.
that's when i took the picture.




mike wieringo
the nicest guy in comics


smell ya later!
todd

Thursday, September 07, 2006

i'm gone...



okay...

one last blog before i head off to the baltimore comicon...
and again, if you're in the area, make sure you stop by and see us.
craig and i will have the awesome, exclusive, we-can't-believe-dark-horse-got-'em early-for-us, hot-off-the-presses, PERHAPANAUTS: FIRST BLOOD trade paperback!! in stores september 20th, but we got 'em a week and half early! we'll even write on 'em for ya!



everybody have a great weekend and i'll see ya back here next week with yet another installment of what stupid stuff we did at the convention--this time with pictures!! (did i pack the camera...? yeah, okay, i did.)









here then, for your amusement and enjoyment, are some fo the original drawings and/or photos of some of my favorite cryptids.













smell ya later!
todd


Wednesday, September 06, 2006

brian's script and michael's pin-up!

okay...

there are two lead in's to this blog...

first; so i posted all of that stuff on the dump creature for all to see mostly 'cause it's one of those stories that really stuck with me after i read it, it's strange and different and creepy. our good blog-pal, brian mulcahy was fascinated by it too and, inspired by my comment that i wanted to work it into the perhapanauts at some point, let his imagination take off on the idea and shot me some notes he wrote for a possible story.
not one to get in the way of momentum or any one else's muse, i told brian to write his own damn story--he had it all down there and i thought it was really good! we would eventually have a section on this site for fan pictures/stories/pin-ups/etc. ...

(at this point let me mention that we ALREADY have a fully written and drawn perhapanauts adventure by my neighbor and friend, 13 year old, jj muste, that he sent in months ago! sorry, jj--as i've said, with all the plates craig has spinning ; stay-at-home dad with 2 year old johnny, re-doing their kitchen, and putting on a huge new addition to the house...oh, and in his spare time he draws the perhapanauts, he doesn't have a lot of time these days...)

where we could post the story either as a short story...or a SCRIPT! and maybe an interested up and coming artist would wanna draw it! or at least do some illustrations for it...! brian was psyched and wrote it. OVERNIGHT! (whoa. slow down, brian. you're makin' the rest of us look bad...)
i read it and it was wonderful! fun and full of great action and some great character moments! great job, bri!
it's called the perhapanauts "Down in the Dumps!"
so now he’s looking for an artist…

that's the first part.
here's part 2...

as i said a few posts back, i now have a page on myspace.
it's been fun--kind of an experiment--but i've happily 'met' some new people, re-connected with some old friends, and certainly heard from some of the 'other' people out there who have actually heard of--and in some cases, even READ!--the perhapanauts!
one of those people was mek71. he hit me with a very nice message when he saw myspace page ("myspage" as dani calls it...) and told me that, if it was okay, he'd like to do a pin-up of one of the perhapanauts. i said, absolutely! have fun!
well, he did and he sent me this great pin-up!




by the way, mek’s real name is michael kasinger. you can see more of his stuff at
www.fabricari.com/gallery/index.php?cat=10003

this was colored and inked by his friend, michael babinski.
i thought it was AWESOME and captured that shifting dimensions ability of mg's perfectly! the tentacles were cool too... though at the time, i didn't see the connection...

until he asked me if i knew of anyone looking for an artist…

and this wasn’t over the course of a couple weeks or days--or even ONE DAY--this was RIGHT AFTER I HAD JUST FINISHED READING BRIAN’S SCRIPT!! moments after! i clicked ‘send’ on my reply (and praise) to brian, and clicked on michael’s message…
synchronous symmetry indeed…

so that’s the story.
sometimes stuff like this happens.

we’ll post brian’s script and michael’s illustrations--and jj’s opus!!--soon!
until then…

smell ya later!

and see ya in baltimore!
todd

Monday, September 04, 2006

GOIN' TO BALTIMORE! SEE YA THERE!!!!

okay...

now that y'all've had the chance to study the strange case of paula m. (i'd really love to have a chance to talk with her...) and the eerie creature from the dump, let me shift gears completely and let everyone know that craig and i--along with our pals, mike wieringo and, we think (???) randy green--will be attending the super-awesome-cool BALTIMORE COMICON this coming weekend, september 9 and 10, baltimore convention center in baltimore, maryland! (did i say 'baltimore' enough...?)

this is one of the two shows (shelton drum's HEROESCON in charlotte being the other) that i absolutely LOVE to go to. to me it's what a comics show should be, not some confusing, crazy, multi-media circus where you need a cell phone just to find the exit, but a real celebration of comics and the people who read them!

and like heroes, the baltimore show has it's own guiding light, a man who truly loves comics and the people who come to his shows--both guests and fans--marc nathan!
i've known marc for about 6 or 7 years now and though it took us a little while to get the chance to hang and get to know each other, when we finally did we soon found ourselves to be kindred spirits in the way of comic books and what they mean to us. and with a lot more in common than we knew.
here's us after a few too many beers...




anyway, marc puts on the kind of comics show you WANT to go to, that you dream of, that both guests and fans always have a great time at! if you're in the area, make sure to come by and say hello! we'd love to see ya! we'll be giving away the increasingly popular perhapanauts postcards (selling now on ebay for $5!?!?!?!) as well as the hugely infamous choopie butt cards that have mother's nervous all across the contiguous U.S.! don't miss out!

also, our BIG announcement is that craig and i will have early, advance, we-can't-believe-dark-horse-got-these-for-us copies of our brand new trade, THE PERHAPANAUTS:FIRST BLOOD, for sale and signing at our table!! and though i've put it up here numerous times already, i'm gonna do it again 'cause i'm so excited!! here, this is what it looks like!





i'll try to blog again before we leave, but do whatcha can to come out and see us if you're in the area! rico will be there as well and i have a feeling that frequent perhapa-blog commentor, brian mulcahy, will be making an appearance as well!

see ya there!
todd

Saturday, September 02, 2006

the dump creature, what was it?

WAIT!
DON'T READ THIS UNTIL YOU READ THE POST BELOW!!
AND THAT ONE SAYS THE SAME THING, SO GO TWO DOWN...!!

When Paula M. went to the dump site in search of old, collectible bottles, the last thing she expected was an encounter with an unknown animal. And she may not have expected the amount of attention the story of her encounter would receive. Besides the article about her sighting of this mysterious creature, which appeared on this website (see "The Creature of the Dump"), Paula was also recently interviewed by talk radio host Jeff Rense. Brad Steiger, a well-known author of many books on the paranormal and mysterious creatures, also spoke with Paula on Jeff's show. Steiger commented that he has documented many encounters with strange creatures, but the one Paula met was new to him. Most curious, he said, was the animal's large, crystal-blue eyes.

Paula is still seeking answers or even suggestions to what this large, worm-like creature might be. Some readers have responded with their ideas - and even warnings - about this blue-eyed tube worm. Here is what they have to say:


An Ingot?_
I probably won't be the first or only to inform you that what Paula saw at the dump may indeed be an unidentified Southeastern Asian creature known as an ingot [possibly lingot]. Check with Agence France-Press for stories about ingots during the final years of French involvement in Indochina. They were seen burrowing everywhere, and the descriptions of the bodies and eyes match those of Paula's story. Old Indochina veterans in the French army could never explain them or where they came from, and there is no record of American sightings during this country's involvement later. General Jean de Lattre de Tassigny, supreme commander of French forces in Indochina, was so unnerved by sighting of burrowing ingots and the lack of information about them that he brought in a special team of researchers, who apparently found nothing. The ingot is like no other creature reported on earth, and it contributed to the general weirdness of the French experience in Indochina. Ingots were reported in large numbers in 1953 around the North Vietnamese site where an entire French regiment vanished without a trace. This disappearance may have had nothing to do with ingots, but there are still old veterans in the cafes of Paris, Bordeaux and Marseilles who swear there was a connection. Incidentally, the reality of the disappearing regiment is well-documented. For a few years in the 1950s, burrowing ingots made big news in France. But France, like the US later, hid its Indochinese veterans and paid little attention to their stories... about anything. Such is defeat. - Loic C.

Tatzelwurm?_
I just read the article in the new issue titled "The Creature of the Dump." At the end of it, you asked if anyone had any idea as to what the thing might have been. Is it possible that it was a tatzelwurm? I've not heard anything about tatzelwurms for quite some time. But upon reading that article, that was the first, and really the only, suggestion that came to mind. While I'm writing, I also want to say that I am very glad to have found your website. I ran across it only a few weeks ago while researching something and joined the mailing list. It must take a huge amount of time and effort to maintain such a website. For that, I thank you. - Scott



The tatzelwurm, German for "worm with claws," is a legendary creature, not recognized by science, that is said to dwell in the Swiss and Austrian Alps. It is reputedly a "dragon" with a catlike head and spiked ridges along its back. It supposedly has a seven- foot-long, light-colored cylindrical body with four legs that end in three protruding toes. The above skeleton was allegedly given to the Geneva Institute of Sciences as the first physical proof that the tatzelwurm actually exists. The first sightings of the tatzelwurm were in the 1700s by a farmer who claimed that it attacked his livestock. The skeleton is almost certainly a fake.

The 8-Foot Horror_
I have not seen this creature myself, but I know of someone in California who has. It was about more than 30 years ago and the people who saw it were little children at the time. They said they were playing in the backyard in the dirt when all of a sudden this "thing" came sprouting out the the dirt. The brother and sister just watched in horror, holding their breath. The brother described it as a tall, worm-looking thing about 8 feet tall. Up to this day, if the sister asks the brother, "Do you remember...?" he cuts her off and says he doesn't want to talk about it. I believe in what they saw._- Natalie W.

Predatory Behavior?_
I read the article about that weird creature of the dump that Paula M saw. I just think that she ought to be careful going back to look for the creature. Its behavior seems to me to suggest that it is a predator of some sort. First, most herbivores, when aware of an unknown, possibly hostile species, will do their best to flee, or at the least if they cannot escape they will show some sign of fear. This creature obviously showed no sign of fear from the account that was given. This creature even came out of the ground when it was likely that it would have had some sign that there was a large being somewhere in the vicinity. I assume that it had this knowledge as a creature that lived underground would likely be sensitive to vibrations, and be able to determine that something large was around. The next thing that makes this creature seem predatorial is how it extended itself and waved in the air in a very obvious manner. This seems like it could be some sort of attraction mechanism for prey, by showing them a small part of its body to attract some other creature toward it. Of course, I am not a professional in the field of animal behavior, but I have observed and read about predators so that I do have some knowledge on the subject. These ideas could be completely wrong, but it never hurts to be careful. I'd just suggest that she doesn't approach the creature and that she does not go to look for it alone. Perhaps the reason that the creature is unknown is that no one has ever survived an experience with it before. - Anton B.


personally, i think that the first post "An Ingot?" doesn't do much to confirm or authentify paula's story, but it sure makes for a creepy addendum.
the last one, offering that what she saw might only be the tip of the iceberg, a dangling bit of bait to lure prey closer--that's eerie too!
but obviously, none of these comments can absolutely identify the creature and THAT'S what makes the whole thing stay with me. even if a zoologist or biologist somewhere were able to step forward and show us a specimen or give an entire thesis of this thing, it's still a monster!

that why i love this stuff. i WANT there to be weird, still-undiscovered, unknown creatures out there! i WANT to know that there are still some dark shadowy places where the light of our so-called civilizataion hasn't yet shined. i WANT to see these creatures, run into them. yeah, maybe even at night...

i just don't want them to eat me.

whadda YOU think?

todd

Friday, September 01, 2006

the dump creature, pt 2

HEY!
DON'T READ THIS UNTIL YOU'VE READ THE ENTRY BELOW!

here, because brian demanded it!...
part 2.


By now, Paula was completely perplexed. This was like nothing she had ever seen in person, at a zoo or on any nature program on television. And if this creature wasn't strange enough, it then gave Paula a remarkable surprise.

"All of a sudden, while I was examining it, two big beautiful crystal blue eyes popped open! Now I knew what end of the animal I was looking at."

All thoughts of this being some kind of giant worm were immediately dismissed. Worms don't have eyes - not like that! More curious than frightened of this remarkable animal, Paula began to wonder how big the body was and what its arms, legs and tail looked like - or if it even had any such parts. "The white of the eye surrounding its blue pupil was the whitest I'd ever seen - a pure virgin white. The size of the eyes were quite big in proportion to its body size. I wondered if it were a juvenile."

Paula was totally astounded when the eyes opened because while first looking at it she could not tell that it had eyes at all; there were no visible eyelids, eye lashes, bulges, indentations, holes or slits of any kind. The curiosity seemed to be mutual. "My presence didn't seem to bother it because it studied me for only a short period of time. Then it ignored me. It appeared content and relaxed while it exposed itself to the sun. Its slow motion movement and blinking reminded me of a turtle."

Paula felt that the creature was harmless and stepped even closer to it for a better look. She looked for its mouth, nose and ears, but couldn't find them. She wondered if they were camouflaged in the same way that its eyes had been. She also tried to determine where its head ended and neck began because it had no chin or indentations of any kind to separate the two. The body, neck and head appeared as one - like a living, flexible tube with eyes.

Paula was startled when the creature began to move, and she instinctively stepped back. The animal slowly began to sway the top of its body back and forth as it stretched itself upward toward the sky, all the while slowly blinking.

"I tried to get it to look at me again by clapping my hands and yelling, but it continued to ignore me." Since it had no discernable ears, Paula wondered if perhaps it couldn't hear sound. So she tried waving her arms and hands about to draw its attention to her. But all it did was stare at the sky, continuing to sway its head back and forth, stretching upward while blinking slowly. It was as if it were hypnotized by the light of the sun.

After about five minutes, the creature decided to retreat into its lair. "I watched it until it finally pulled itself slowly back into its burrow. I looked into the hole after it, but it was so dark that I couldn't see anything."

Paula isn't quite sure what to make of this peculiar encounter, but it haunts her. "I haven't been able to erase it from my mind, and it's driving me crazy! I've asked many people about it and have spent countless hours searching the Internet for answers to any known or unknown animal fitting the description of the animal."

Paula returned to the dump site this Spring in hopes of getting another glimpse of the mysterious creature. No such luck. Some of the hole openings were there, however. "I am convinced that this animal still exists and lives there. It's possible that it hibernates, so I will go back again in early to mid-summer and try and get another glimpse of it - and possibly capture it on film."

Hopefully, Paula will succeed in capturing the animal on film or video. It could be something well known to science, if unusual. For now, however, the creature of the dump remains unknown.


and, yeah, i'll post the comments/replies/conjectures tomorrow.

g'night!
todd

the dump creature

okay...

i really should be writing the script to issue 4 of perhapanauts:second chances right now, but like every good procrastinator, i'm stalling. i'm on a bit of a roll in THIS part of writing; the talking to people, letter writing, emailing, blog blogging, correspondence kind of writing. i'll get to the more imaginative, fantastic, makin' crazy crap up right off the toppa your head kinda writing a little later.

actually, for most of this post, i plan on cutting and pasting one of my favorite (weird) stories off of paranormal at about dot com. i really don't know what the rules are about this, about borrowing content or whatever it's called, but i think that as long as i say where it came from--and not try to claim it as my own--everybody's cool.

anyway, i read this article about a year or so ago and it just continues to haunt me. i keep trying to figure out a cool way to incorporate it--this thing or occurance or whatever it is--into the perhapanauts, but i just haven't figured out a way to get it to all fall into place.
yet.

it's pretty self explanatory and it's actually in a couple parts; the story i'll bust up into 2 sections, and the comments. i'll post the replies/responses seperately.

see what you think.

THE CREATURE OF THE DUMP
Sometimes it's difficult to believe your own eyes. When people encounter a thing they cannot explain - something completely alien to their experience - they tend to doubt their own senses at first. The mind tries to relate what is seen to previous experiences, but when that thing is so totally bizarre, many people second-guess their experience. "I couldn't have seen that," they tell themselves. "It doesn't make sense."

In a recent poll of readers, I asked if they had ever seen a living creature they could not explain. Of more than 650 respondents, 47 percent said that they had. That's a lot of unexplained sightings.

Paula M. had one such sighting. But it wasn't of a Bigfoot, a sea serpent or even a Chupacabra. In many ways it was much stranger. And try as she might and after diligent research, she has yet to come up with an explanation for what she saw.
The encounter took place on a warm, otherwise ordinary day in the summer of 1999 just outside a small town in Oregon.__One of Paula's hobbies was prowling through old junk yards and dump sites for vintage old bottles and glass. On this particular day, she headed to an old off-road dump site that she had heard about but had never been to before. Paula parked her car on the side of the road and hiked a short distance to the dump.

The dump was typical of several she had been to: Piles of discarded household items and furniture, scattered mounds of rusting old appliances and metal. This recess was quiet and secluded. It was surrounded by trees and had patches of tall skimpy grass and weeds amid the trash. A small stream rested at very bottom of the recess with slow moving water one to two inches deep.__Then Paula noticed something peculiar - something she had never seen at any other dump site.
"As I was staking out the area," she said. "I happened across some tunnel-like holes in the ground. The holes were of a peculiar size, which made me wonder what kind of animal possibly could have dug them."

Paula noticed six or seven of the holes, each about two inches in diameter and partially camouflaged by the sparse growth of the recess. The holes could have been made by any number of burrowing creatures, Paula reasoned. She didn't worry about it.__Experienced in this hunt for junkyard treasures, Paula sifted around here and there for about 30 minutes until she found a spot that looked inviting on the slant of a hill, about three-fourths of the way down to the stream. Dropping to her knees, she took her hand trowel and began to dig. Paula especially valued the old bottles with embossed lettering, but such finds rarely made their appearance quickly or easily. She dug in the dirt for nearly an hour - so long that in this kneeling position her legs were beginning to go to "fall sleep."

Paula decided to take a break from her excavation and stretch her legs. She stood and walked around a bit. "While I was moving about at the bottom of the recess, I thought I saw, from the corner of my eye, a clump of dirt move. It was about the size of my fist."__She turned to look squarely in the direction of the movement, trying to detect it again. But nothing moved. "Nah," she thought, "it was nothing."_ _Paula was about to return to her dig when she saw it again. About 10 feet away from her, the clump of dirt moved, like it was pushed out of the ground from beneath, and rolled down the hill. Paula began to get a little nervous. Whatever had made those tunnel-like holes was apparently making another one. And she wasn't particularly keen on watching a rat, a snake or some other potentially dangerous animal come slithering out.

Then she saw it. Something living began to poke itself out of the ground!

Paula's first reaction to seeing this "thing" was saying, "Oh, my God! What are you?"

Paula was familiar with the outdoors and was reasonably sure of what animals she might encounter in a junkyard. But this thing she could not identify. She stepped cautiously closer to it, thinking that the vibration of her digging may have driven it from its burrow.__She stopped about four to five feet away from the creature. What she could see of it was poking out of the ground about five inches. "At this point, I wasn't sure what end of the animal I was looking at," Paula said. "It was about two inches in diameter, and the end of it was perfectly smooth and round - like a cue ball. It was light-brown in color, very much like the surrounding earth. It had a worm-like shape, but didn't taper down at the end as worms do, and was firmer around looking. It had no distinguishing or familiar features to indicate to me what it was."

Its size made it obvious that this was not a worm - at least not any kind of worm Paula had ever heard of. And she could not see its entire body, only what was poking out of the ground, so who knows what this thing really looked like.

Paula looked at the creature closely, trying in vain to find anything familiar about it. She could not detect any eyes, mouth, nose or ears. It had no fur, scales or worm-like ripples on its skin. What it did have was patches of peach-like fuzz - very fine and spaced apart like the hair on a young human's arm - covering what looked like soft, dusty skin about the texture of a person's. It was not wet, slimy or tough looking.

By now, Paula was completely perplexed. This was like nothing she had ever seen in person, at a zoo or on any nature program on television. And if this creature wasn't strange enough, it then gave Paula a remarkable surprise.

part 2 tomorrow...

later~~
todd