Thursday, September 27, 2007

Dave Sim's blogandmail #381 (September 27th, 2007)


Fifteen Impossible Things to Believe Before Breakfast That Make You a Good Feminist

1. A mother who works a full-time job and delegates to strangers the raising of her children eight hours a day, five days a week does just as good a job as a mother who hand-rears her children full time.

2. It makes great sense for the government to pay 10 to 15,000 dollars a year to fund a daycare space for a child so its mother - who pays perhaps 2,000 dollars in taxes - can be a contributing member of society.

3. A woman's doctor has more of a valid claim to participate in the decision to abort a fetus than does the father of that fetus.

4. So long as a woman makes a decision after consulting with her doctor, she is incapable of making an unethical choice.

5. A car with two steering wheels, two gas pedals and two brakes drives more efficiently than a car with one steering wheel, one gas pedal and one brake which is why marriage should always be an equal partnership.

6. It is absolutely necessary for women to be allowed to join or participate fully in any gathering place for men, just as it is absolutely necessary that there be women only environments from which men are excluded.

7. Because it involves taking jobs away from men and giving them to women, affirmative action makes for a fairer and more just society.

8. It is important to have lower physical standards for women firepersons and women policepersons so that, one day, half of all firepersons and policepersons will be women, thus more effectively protecting the safety of the public.

9. Affirmative action at colleges and universities needs to be maintained now that more women than men are being enrolled, in order to keep from giving men an unfair advantage academically.

10. Having ensured that there is no environment for men where women don't belong (see no.6) it is important to have zero tolerance of any expression or action which any woman might regard as sexist to ensure greater freedom for everyone.

11. Only in a society which maintains a level of 95% of alimony and child support being paid by men to women can men and women be considered as equals.

12. An airline stewardess who earned $20,000 a year at the time that she married a baseball player earning $6 million a year is entitled, in the event of a divorce, to $3 million for each year of the marriage and probably more.

13. A man's opinions on how to rear and/or raise a child are invalid because he is not the child's mother. However, his financial obligation is greater because no woman gets pregnant by herself.

14. Disagreeing with any of these statements makes you anti-woman and/or a misogynist.

15. Legislature Seats must be allocated to women and women must be allowed to bypass the democratic winnowing process in order to guarantee female representation and, thereby, make democracy fairer.


Margaret L, cerebusfangirl wrote me a letter June 10, regarding the 1980s CEREBUS Fan Club:

Hello Dave,

Thank you for the envelope of FRIENDS OF CEREBUS goodies! The sketch on the back gave me a chuckle. You asked for a copy of my FOC newsletter #9? Well, as it turns out – a day or so after I got the envelope from you, an auction of FOC goodies came up on eBay. They were auctioning off newsletters #7-13 and some other FOC items. I managed to win the auction and enclose the "extra" copy of #9, which is in much better condition than the one I would've made copies of for you. So now you have a real newsletter #9 for the Archives.

Thanks, Margaret!

Along with the FOC goodies from the auction, were some papers that were sent to FOC members. One of them made me wish I was a reader back then: coupons for 50% off Cerebus artwork, subscriptions, etc…though now that I look I don't see an expiration date on them…hahaha. Sure thing.

Haha, indeed, and as I recall we didn't get too many of those back at a time when I was getting – let me just check. Issue 80 just at random -- $50 a page for pages from issues 2 through 30 and $100 a page for pages from issues 30 up. So with the coupon, you'd have been paying $25 each for the early pages and $50 each for the later pages. Not a bad little return on your investment if you look at what they're going for now. I bet everyone got the 50% off coupon and went, "Wow, the art sales must be tanking. 50% off! Well, he's not going to fool me! 50% off on dead artwork. What was I, born yesterday?" I know, I know, rub it in, why don't I?

I've enclosed a copy of the coupons and also half of the Friends of Cerebus renewal notice as I have a question about it. With the August, 1984 newsletter, #12, the goodies that came with it are listed as "lapel pin" and "matches". Matches? Lapel pin? Do you have any recollection of these items? I'm enclosing a print of my site's FOC page to show you the information on the FOC I currently have which shows that with issue #12 came the "mag minder" Cerebus magnet.

Okay, let's see what we have here. On the first page and throughout the contents descriptions of the newsletter, you have the original fan club founder, Fred Patten's name spelled wrong.

The lapel pin, evidently I have three of. So you can't have one of those. I try to keep three of everything in the Archive if I can. SUPPORT YOUR PRIME MINISTER. I had forgotten all about it. Deni found a button maker somewhere. Basically you took the circular illustration, the circular lamination, put them on the button and then crushed them together in the button maker. Yep, Badge-a-minit Says so right on the back. She tried to get Karen to do them all and ended up having to do most of them herself because it was such a pain to do (and, of course, Karen being a strong, independent woman first and an employee a distant second if she didn't want to do it, she didn't do it). That was it for the buttons, as I recall.

The fridge magnet, I have 23 of, so you can have one of those.

Also I have a few of the notepads. The signed photos of Dave Sim I have a gazillion of.

In terms of things like the three-page letter from me and Karen, I had all of the fan club stuff separate for a long while and then had to make the decision as to whether to keep it separate or incorporate it into the formal Archive (8.5 x 11 and smaller) in chronological order and opted for the latter. Once you've got the notebooks done…

[for those of you just tuning in to As The Cerebusfangirl Turns, Margaret volunteered to scan all of my notebooks a while back. It was an interesting test that I couldn't win: i.e. Does Dave Sim the Evil Misogynist trust a woman with his irreplaceable notebooks?

Well, sure.

As I say, Margaret was virtually the only person who was overtly interested in Cerebus for an extended period there, certainly the only person who thought that the book's history deserved to be documented when everyone else was really just trying to decide how long it would be until Dave Sim killed himself and just how unfavourably he would be treated as a part of comics history. Not WHETHER he would be treated favourably or unfavourably, but HOW UNFAVOURABLY he would be treated.

Her closest immediate predecessor was Steve Hendricks who had been planning a Cerebus Museum from the early 80's onward. I sent him a fair amount of one-of-a-kind stuff and basically at one point he just sold it all. Didn't tell me or anything or ask me if I wanted any of it back. Just sold it all. Obviously in the Gerhard Mould of "Complete Loss of Confidence". I found out when Brian Coppola mentioned a few of the items he had bought from Steve. Oh, yeah? Sold you those, did he? Unless Brian's changed his mind, he's willing his Cerebus collection back to the Archive, so, in a sense, "no harm no foul" but…

I'm not the sort of person who forgets those kinds of things, going both ways. Steve Hendricks turning on me and Margaret sticking with me through thick and thin.

It could have been a scam. Margaret calls up all apologetic with a "dog ate my homework" story where the notebooks got destroyed – I very seldom think that the phone ringing is bringing good news and I'm usually correct in thinking that way -- but I didn't think so. Bucking a trend -- particularly when the Marxist-feminists are involved and absolute shunning is the rule rather than the exception – is not something someone tends to do for a lark, it's something they do when they're seriously dedicated, which Margaret has proven herself to be. I sent her the notebooks two and three at a time and she sent them back pretty quickly after they were scanned. In fact, she said on the podcast that Dan Parker is working on the scans to make them fully word searchable. You type in a word or a name and it will tell you where that word or name occurs anywhere in the thirty or forty notebooks. When all of that is done – and it'll be a while yet -- I'll be releasing The Complete Cerebus Notebooks on DVD.

But as I say, I can't win on that one. Had I NOT trusted her with the notebooks, that would have proved that I was an Evil Misogynist. Having trusted her with the notebooks, that meant that I had capitulated to a feminist. Which meant feminism was right. Which meant I was wrong and so on. But, after the notebooks project is done…]

…then it will be time to start on the formal Archive, 8.5 x 11 and smaller. That brings us to the matches, which were actually Now & Then Books matches that Harry had done up that had the Now & Then Books info on the one side and the illustration of Cerebus from the cover of issue 15 on the other side (which was a good illustration to put on matchbooks). I was still smoking like a chimney then, so no matter how many matchbooks I got, I ended up using them. Someone finally gave me an intact book a while back and I think I put it in the 8.5 x 11 and smaller Archive. I know I have a matchbook cover in there somewhere without the matches.

Like a lot of other things connected with the fan club, I think it will turn up when the 8.5 x 11 stuff is being scanned. Also, because you've done some advance work here, you'll be able to put what is there into more accurate chronological order. Shot in the dark, I went and checked to see if I could just flip through to the matchbooks. No go. But I did find the bookmark and the "Fight Like an Aardvark" bumper sticker right next to each other.

It'll be up to you at that point if you want to scan the Fan Club stuff twice, once for the 8.5 x 11 and smaller and once for a separate Fan Club Archive.

Also, thanks for mentioning to Jeff Tundis that you still had some first printings of the phonebooks hanging around and the trust to have the warehouse send off the bundle of phonebooks to me before I had a chance to send the money to Jeff (I only have Mastercard and AV only takes VISA, but thankfully can take paypal over the Internet.)

Oh, hey, if you can't trust cerebusfangirl, who can you trust? As I told Jeff, I know where you people live. Yes, good opportunity to make a general boarding announcement on that one. According to the inventory list from the warehouse, as of the end of June, I still have SIGNED AND NUMBERED FIRST PRINTINGS of (quantities in parentheses) JAKA'S STORY (13), READS (178), MINDS (225), GUYS (33), FORM & VOID (58), LATTER DAYS (14), THE LAST DAY (13). Just to show what a nice guy I am, I'll let them go at cover price: same as the regular editions.

Now, watch. Everyone's going to go, "Wow, sales on the signed and numbered first printings must be tanking if he's offering them at cover price. Well he's not going to fool me. First printings at cover price. What was I, born yesterday?"

Ain't human nature the cat's pyjamas?





If you wish to contact Dave Sim, you can mail a letter (he does NOT receive emails) to:

Aardvark Vanaheim, Inc
P.O. Box 1674
Station C
Kitchener, Ontario, Canada N2G 4R2

Looking for a place to purchase Cerebus phonebooks? You can do so online through Win-Mill Productions -- producers of Following Cerebus. Convenient payment with PayPal:

Win-Mill Productions

Or, you can check out Mars Import:

Mars Import

Or ask your local retailer to order them for you through Diamond Comics distributors.