Thursday, July 31, 2003

"Dookaak Eat Monkey!"

Hey all. Had a wonderful time in Arkansas this weekend, getting to see many of my close friends for what may be the last in a very long, long time. Like many many moons. Or months. Whatever.

Anyway, yeah, that was a bittersweet gathering, but such is life. Partings may not be easy, but we have to deal with them. And when all else fails, maybe large amounts of alcohol will dull the pain...okay, probably not, and it's not like I've got the money for large amounts of alcohol, so I'll probably just watch anime instead and remember the old times or something.

Delusions Redux

As I've said many times, Clif and I have completed recording of Cross-Eyed Yeti's debut album, Delusions of Grandeur. Anyway, as soon as I get cover art and stuff together (the Monkey's working on that), we'll be making that available through this website. Yes, you, too, can own the album guaranteed to make you wonder what the hell you did with the earplugs. While you won't be the envy of your neighbors, you will be their aural bane, and they'll probably give you money to turn it off if you're playing the record loud enough. Anyway, we'll probably charge something like $5 per CD plus a small shipping & handling fee, but we think it'll be well-worth it...perhaps.

Wednesday, July 23, 2003

Post for July 23, 2003

Big Ten Inch...Record

The Delusion is now reality. That's right--Clif and I have finished recording Cross-Eyed Yeti's debute album, Delusions of Grandeur. Fourteen tracks, just over 40 minutes of music guaranteed to sound absolutely nothing like a boy band record. It's equal parts wry humor, roots rock, and what Clif calls his "flamengo lead guitar" (I asked him if he meant "flamenco guitar," but he was positive that he meant "flamengo." The boy has issues, that's all I can say). That being said, we are very proud of what we accomplished with these songs, and we think they're actually quite good. At some point, we may try to sell the CD through the Dim Bulb (note spacing) site. Should be easy, since I've got all the songs on MP3 on my computer. Granted, what you'll get is a burned copy of it, and the sound quality isn't as high on all of the songs as we wanted, but we were working under rather primative conditions, and think it all turned out good nonetheless. I'll probably see about getting a nice CD label making kit to fancy up the CDs. They'll feature art from our very own Noise Monkey, who was kind enough to some art of a Yeti nature for us. Very spiffy stuff.

Last Train to Clarksville

So I'm going to Arkansas this weekend...not technically to Clarksville, and technically in a car rather than by train, but try to work with me here. But yeah, we're having a going away party for Chris and Jennifer Vander Leest, my roommates of three years and all-around entertaining people (I hesitate to call them "good people" because Chris is mentioned in there). Anyway, they're moving up to Seattle (as in Washington state) so Chris can attend a fancy art school up there. They will be sorely missed, and trips to Clarksville just won't be the same anymore.

Really, it does sort of feel like a chapter of life is coming to an end. I mean, one sorta ended last May when I graduated and started Graduate school, but my situation at OU has always felt...temporary. Like I was just off on a sort of intellectual vacation and would return to the "real World" (yes, I'm actually referring to life in Clarksville with all of my friends as "the real world." Deal with it) soon. The change never really sunk in, I guess. I'd go back for a weekend, and it was like I never left. Folks were like, "oh, it's Chuck," and it didn't seem like anything unusual. On the contrary, it seemed perfectly ordinary, almost right, one could say. But, according to what I've been told, we all have to move on, and we can't remain fixed in one place and one time forever (currently, evidence seems to weigh quiet heavily in favor of those who say this. What with all the people I know who're getting married or moving off or at least on, it seems like I'm the only one sometimes who wants to cling to the past...and now you know the real reason I'm a history major. This is a character trait, let me tell you). But yeah, long story short, I'm going to Arkansas this weekend for one of the last chances for the gang to all be together in place and all of us act like children before "reality" and "adulthood" and "responsibility" all catch up with us.

The Monkey

So there's a theory going around that perhaps the Monkey is a bit too caustic and cruel to people. I dunno, I've met worse. Admittedly, his sense of humor is generally more evil than mine (well, according to who you're talking to), but I don't think he's as bad as, say, Clif, who gets pleasure out of torturing blind people and yelling out of car windows at idiots who are about to stick their hands in hot springs in national parks (admittedly, I found that particular incident funny as hell, but I can't really relate it in full here without offending some people's sensibilities). Eh. I don't see the big deal. Sure, he's made fun of me for not being able to space things correctly or to count, but my math skills are widely recognized as being non-existant, and I figure I can probably dish it out as well as I can take it if it comes to that (I mean, after all, he admitted he's got girly arms. I could take him). Oh well. Go read the comics. I'll be back Monday with something witty and verbose, with any luck.

Oh, and Monkey, as for a way of telling her that you're mean? I think the post might've taken care of your problem...which isn't to say it won't generate a whole host of new problems, but hey--we take issues as they come up, right?

Monday, July 21, 2003

Post for July 21, 2003

Jammin' Me

Celebrated my paternal uncle's birthday this weekend, which was more fun than it sounds. The evening included plenty of food (always a plus), a swimming pool, and a jam session. Now, I don't play any instruments. Some would even say I don't really sing. That sort of debate I leave to the gods, though. At any rate, about a half dozen men sitting around with guitars, a couple of people who are sitting around listening and remember all the words, and you've got several hours of entertainment on your hands. And no one cringed when I sang, so I must've been doing something right.

Delusions of Grandeur

Clif and I almost have Cross-Eyed Yeti's debute album recorded. We only lack recording three songs and a couple of additional tracks on already-recorded songs. The short story is that we'll have it done by the end of the week. And then...well, who knows what'll happen then. I'll probably find some way to torture my friends with the album. Which reminds me--Monkey, have you had a chance to draw that stuff for us yet?

Friday, July 18, 2003

Post for July 18, 2003

Declining Standards

Well, the Latin language owns my soul. I took the third of five tests for my Latin correspondence course yesterday. I have a difficult time with foreign languages (there are some who might say I have difficulty with English, too, but I digress). I do think I've narrowed down my problem, though. See, Latin is one of those languages that relies on conjugation of verbs and declension of nouns/pronouns/adjectives to convey certain meaning. It also features gender. Woo. But instead of just having one set of endings for conjugating all verbs and one set of endings for declining all nouns/pronouns/adjectives, you end up with five different conjugations and four different declensions. And then you have different endings depending on the gender of the word. And then you have the different tenses for verbs. So far, I have present, imperfect (past), and future, but they're going to add two or three new tenses in the next few chapters. What all this means is that you have to memorize a lot of different endings for different words. I really think that this is just shoddy work. I mean, when they were designing Latin, why couldn't they have made it real simple. You only need three, maybe four tenses: present, past, future, and maybe future imperfect (like "he will have done this" or something like that. I'm not real clear on this sort of thing). Each verb should thus have three, possibly four potential conjugations. It wouldn't matter if the word was masculine, feminine, or neuter--same ending for all of them. One set of declension endings for allnouns, pronouns, and adjectives. It'd be simple. I tell ya, the ancients really just didn't have their act together when they set up their language.

Granted, English is ten times worse, but thankfully I speak that already and don't have to worry about trying to learn it as a second (or, as the case is for me with Latin, fifth) language.

G.L.O.C.H. (Gorgeous Ladies of Crooked Halo)

Today's comic again features the ladies Andrea and Tammy. Someday I hope to elaborate more on their characters. We'll just have to see what I can manage. They will play fairly prominent roles in the lives of Simon and Jerome, if only because we need ye ol' woman's touch to keep the comic and me honest.

They Say it's Your Birthday

Today marks the one month anniversary of the new Dim Bulb Comics site. Come celebrate with us by taking a trip through the archives or joining us in the forum. There's a nice forum thread about how underground and "indie" we are (which has diverged into a discussion of my inability to correctly-space the words "Dim" and "Bulb" when writing Dimbulb...or, as Adam insists it's supposed to be, Dim Bulb). Thanks for reading, and make sure to check out page three of Troubled Times tomorrow. I know I'm looking forward to it (because I haven't seen it yet, either).


On a related note, I may not put a space between "Dim" and "Bulb" regularly, but at least I know how to spell "cabesa." I can also spell "ambidexterous," which has no actually bearing on the current debate, but I felt obligated to point out my versatility in matters concerning writing stuff. Yeah. And I figured out that you have to have a space between "Bulb" and "Comics" because if you put it anywhere else, it chafes.

Thursday, July 17, 2003

GLOCH (Gorgeous Ladies of Crooked Halo)

Foxy Lady

Today's comic is the first of a pair about the lovely ladies of Crooked Halo, Andrea (not to be confused with Andria, the real-life fiance of the Monkey) and Tammy, the Succubus. How the two ended up becoming roommates is something of an unusual story, and I may someday see about adding the series I did about it from back when I just emailed out the comics to the archives at some point. I dunno.

Anyway, the girls will be regular characters, but probably won't be featured as often or as prominently as the guys. There are two reasons for this: first, I have a tough time writing for the women without it coming out sounding cliched or sexist or just plain dumb...which is funny, when you consider that most of my friends are female. Weird. The second reason is that I can't draw them, either. I have a tough time drawing women, and I don't know why. I think part of it is the idea that I'm drawing the female form. I feel almost...naughty. Sorta like, "heh, I'm drawing boobies," or something like that. I dunno. It's just something I've been trying to work at. Trust me, I'm much better than I was even a month or two ago, and miles beyond how I drew women a year ago. If I'm feeling really evil, I may post some of the older character designs for female characters sometime. We'll see.

Pissed Off

Coincidentally, Clif fixed the toilet in my apartment the other day, just as Adam's favorite urinal at Ozarks was repaired. Now you don't have to try some fancy trick to get the toilet to flush right (before, if you didn't flush it just right, the toilet kept running until you took the top off the tank and fiddled with stuff. I, for one, don't enjoy sticking my hand in the toilet). Anyway, everyone can now pee freely...just please, not in the pool. Or the floor. That's just gross.


Adam has issues when it comes to his layouts, let's just say that. I mean, he goes to great lengths to distance himself from Mac Hall, then starts doing all sorts of things to create new and exciting similarities. I fully expect him to start drawing a kitten on Cal's head anytime. I also suspect this is secretly a way to make me feel like a slacker. I mean, he's doing large color comics now, and I'm sticking to the ol' three-panel black and white. He's also doing three (edit: not four, as previously stated. I think it's a well-known fact that I cannot count. ~Cricket) strips a week, compared to my three. It's a conspiracy, I tell ya, a conspiracy Yeah.

Tuesday, July 15, 2003

Drive My Car

A car sat in the parking lot of my apartment complex since November with a flat tire. It might have even been there since I moved in back in October, but I know it had the flat by November for sure. Anyway, that car sat in the same spot, with the flat tire, and a bunch of crap in the back seat until this past Saturday. That's eight months.Now, what I'm wondering is, did the person who owned it just not have to go anywhere? Have they been sitting in their apartment, unable to move and afraid to leave bed, Brian Wilson style, for the past eight months? Who knows. Interestingly enough, the car hasn't been back since it abruptly disappeared sometime early Saturday.On a thematically-related point, apparently my grandfather bought a new car the other day on something of a whim. And supposedly my parents came to Norman Friday to look at a car. From what Clif tells me, they liked the car and were ready to buy it, but the salesman kept screwing around on the price, and my folks got fed up with the man's crap and left. So, just a warning to all you car salesmen out there: when my parents come around to buy a car, they've done their research, they know what they want, they know how much it should cost, and they won't be jerked around by small-minded simpletons out to try and increase their commission profit. Just a head's up.

Goin' to the Chapel

It would seem that I am quickly becoming part of a minority (bet that sounds funny coming from a white middle class Protestant male, eh?). The number of people I know who are single is dwindling rapidly. The score goes something like this: my roommate and his girlfriend got married back at the end of May. Then another friend of mine got married two weeks later. Prior to this, several people I already knew were married, and many more engaged or in some sort of long-term relationship. Now, of course, we also have the Monkey and Andria engaged. Also, a couple of friends of mine here at OU, Jess and Dom, are going to be getting married next summer. And yesterday I discovered that my friend Amanda E. (to differentiate between the two or three people I know with that name) got engaged and will be getting married early next year. I can also think of another couple of people who've gotten engaged or married recently.Truth be told, it doesn't bother me being single much anymore. I just find it increasingly odd to be single amongst so many people who are in long-term relationships. Not to mention the fact that I'm really entering a discipline that's all about isolation. Reading, research, and writing papers are all rather solitary activities. I mean, I have a tough enough time just typing this newspost with Clif sitting next to me right now...granted, he's playing his ukelele, which is enough to distract most anyone.I'm sure there was a point to all of this. I think it's that, while I don't mind being single, I sometimes get this feeling that I'm being left behind, like I need to catch up with everyone else or something. Feh. This is why I don't let myself think too much.

Something Completely Different

Despite his desires to the contrary, I don't think I'm going to let Clif throw a "Free-Form Ukelele" onto the Cross-Eyed Yeti album (entitled, appropriately, "Delusions of Grandeur"). He's developed something he calls "Kooky Uke," but I don't think it's gonna make the cut...for which you should probably praise whatever superior power you might believe in. Beyond that, we're going to try and lay down a couple of tracks this week, see if we can't get the album recorded by the end of next week. More on that as it develops.

Monday, July 07, 2003

The Yeti are Recording

You might've seen the reference to the band Cross-Eyed Yeti in Vapor Lock on the 26th of June. Who are Cross-Eyed Yeti, you ask? Go on, ask, or I'll feel silly for the rest of this newspost. Thanks. Anyway, since you're so curious, I will tell you about Cross-Eyed Yeti, that you may know and fear. They are, in fact, a real band. Currently, the band consists of my brother Clif on guitar, Noise Monkey on bass (okay, he owns a bass), and myself doing vocals (I use that term loosely).

Recently, Clif purchased a sound effects pedal for his guitar. The thing is like a tiny god. You can hook it up to a computer, and then you can record things through it onto the computer...things like guitar and vocal tracks. Then you can do all sorts of fun stuff to the separate audio tracks, like adding effects and adjusting individual tracks' volume, or doing fade outs, or whatever. Supposedly you can add some pre-programmed drums along with it all, but we've yet to figure that part out.

The long and the short of it is, Clif and I have started recording our songs with this stuff and a borrowed microphone from our church. We're currently in the studio (read: the back bedroom of my apartment) laying down the guitar and vocals for a dozen of our favorite original tunes. We hope to have final versions ready by the end of the month, when he leaves. Then we'll convert it all to MP3s and .wav files (to put on CDs) and then I'll assault your auditory senses with our music. We take a rather ballistic approach to music--Clif likes to play loud and fast, and I have to try and be heard above him. Lots o' fun.

So I leave you with this thought: fear the Yeti.