Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Dave Sim's blogandmail #392 (October 8th, 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.


Have a couple of letters here from Steve Peters. I already used up part of one in the Sunday Edition yesterday, so here are the rest of them:

"I've been thinking it's probably best to head in another direction anyway, with comics that tell a full-length story. The Sparky books, with their jam comic format, seem too fragmentary for me. I don't know how satisfying it is to the reader to have a bunch of 1-, 2-, or 5-page stories. Up next for me is a one-shot full-issue story about EVERWINDS' Runner the fox. In commemoration of Awakening Comics' 10th anniversary, it's going to be my first full-color book."

I always liked the jam comic format in your book, especially since you annotated it so the reader could see who drew what, but then, I know most of the cartoonists at least by their work in association with my Day Prize judging so I'm probably a bad person to go by. In talking about satisfying readers in general in the Direct Market, we'd probably both be better off doing a panel-for-panel, word for word parody of WATCHMEN or Wolverine ORIGIN or something. Anything outside of the super-hero paradigm is like buying a lottery ticket. You shouldn't plan your life around it.

"Thanks for plugging SPARKY IN LOVE in the Blog and Mail a little while back, and for your more recent comments on it, which were very funny. Yes, I do indeed feel MUCH better after the shock therapy. That, and prayer and submission to the Will of God have really made my life a whole lot less complicated these days."

It's Day Nineteen of Ramadan today, so I know what you mean. I had also wondered aloud in my review if Steve had showed any of the strips he had done about his crushes to the crushes themselves.

"The only one of these women I showed her comic to was the last one (and this was indeed the one you drew by accident in our "Origin of Sparky" jam). I don't really remember what her response was; it was pretty much beside the point since she'd already rejected me (as detailed in the comic – I also mentioned in the comic that I was trying to learn the qualities of the man she was looking for. My `logic' was that if I could adopt as many of those qualities as possible I could attract someone like her, if not her. Later, I realized I don't want to be that person or attract anyone like her).

"A while back, I emailed "Violet" about wanting to send her a copy of the CHEMISTRY CD, because when we were going out I had serenaded her with one of the songs I'd written about her, and I wanted her to hear the finished studio version (I didn't mention that ALL the songs were about the relationship, nor did I mention the comic). She expressed some interest, but didn't give me her current address, and I haven't heard from her since, so I figured it would probably be best to keep it to myself.

"I showed CHEMISTRY to my first ex-girlfriend, whom I have remained in contact with over the years. Interestingly, she took Violet's side. By that point, a number of people had read it, and I was getting used to receiving an overwhelmingly positive response – `Wow! That was a great comic! I've been through a lot of the same things!!!' I can't remember what my ex-girlfriend said, but her response was to criticize me and my decisions. Too funny!"

Okay, that gives me an excuse to talk about The Toronto Comic Art Festival (TCAF) a bit. Jeffrey Brown came over and sat with me at my signing session at TCAF for a while – which I really appreciated since 1) he has impeccable avant garde credentials and had nothing to gain by visibly associating with Dave Sim at an avant garde event and 2) there were only four or five people in my "line". I have to tell folks these days, look, just come up to the table so we can all talk, there's only five of you (the only alternative is signing five autographs and then staring at the table for the rest of the hour). I had already bought CONVERSATION #2, James Kochalka's cartoon "dialogue" with him (the first one had been with Craig Thompson) at the Top Shelf table. I put "dialogue" in quotation marks because it works just about as well as any jam strip when it comes to narrative, going off in as many directions as there are pages. We spent a while discussing if there's anything that can be done about that or if incoherence is just sort of "built in". Chester and I started our jam that way – alternating panels – and then someone just feels compelled to do multiple panels to try and get the "story" going in some direction however vague. I'd try to follow what he was doing and he would try to follow what I was doing, but we're two very different people. So I tend to think that incoherence is built in. Anyway, what was interesting was that Jeffrey brought me a copy of his WOLVERINE mini-comic. Seriously, 18 pages of Wolverine. He doesn't sell them, he just gives them away which, if it doesn't make them completely legit, it keeps him on the right side of the law. Interesting story and I can see how he felt compelled to do it once he got it in mind.

So, yeah, eat your hearts out: I've got an autographed Jeffrey Brown WOLVERINE mini-comic.

Anyway, the reason I thought of Jeffrey was Steve's talking about the girlfriends and the relationships that he's depicted in his comic books which Jeffrey has done pretty extensively, (especially in CLUMSY) which led to one of the best gags in Jeffrey's

I AM GOING TO BE SMALL ("tiny comics by Jeffrey Brown"). It's a one-panel gag called "Jeffrey Brown by Jeffrey Brown" and shows him introducing someone to his new girlfriend, saying, "Have you met my next book?"

I thought that was very funny.

Tomorrow: still finishing up with Steve Peters (hang on, Randy, I'm getting' to ya!)


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.