Tuesday, April 26, 2011

On Easter...

I imagine I'm a little late on this post… But I mean, Easter is on a different date every year, so maybe if you read this a year from now it'll be right on time! … Right? Yeah, I guess not… But I have an excuse, I've been on a Honeymoon (rather MY honeymoon) for the past couple weeks and I only got back a few days ago… Then the cold weather of New England depressed me too much to really pull together anything creative. Sad times indeed.

In any case, the day after we arrived back in New England was Good Friday… And the Easter festivities commenced! i.e. Come Sunday we were engorged in food and family. Easter's a funny holiday for me… Not that there's anything truly comedic about what it stands for, but I get overwhelmed in how people respond to it. I've said it a hundred times, but I'll say it again… I was raised in church and I am very much a Christian. So for me, every Easter is dedicated to the death and resurrection of Christ. The Jews dedicate this time of year to Passover, recalling the exodus of the Jews from Egypt and anticipating the coming of their Messiah. Everybody else on the planet eats candy and hunts for eggs!

Three very distinct traditions, yet I find myself pulled in all three directions. Like I said, we returned on Good Friday, which is generally when my father (A devout Christian who studies Hebrew customs in his free time) performs a Seder for his church, detailing the specifics of Passover and showing how each tradition points to the coming of Christ, etc… So I get my fill of Passover. Then on Sunday, every church on the planet spends the morning telling people how we should be calling it Resurrection Sunday… If you call it "Easter", you're in for a world of hurt. There's no mention of a magical bunny who poops candy eggs, just talk of Christ dying on a cross, conquering Death, and rising from the grave on the third day.

And don't take this as sacrilegious, but EVERY time a Pastor talks about how Christ Conquered Death, this image pops into my head…

The reason most churches shy away from the name "Easter" is because it comes from a Babylonian god named "Ishtar" … Not 100% on the spelling, but you get the gist. Ishtar was the god (goddess?) of fertility… Which when you think about it, explains a lot about how Easter is generally celebrated. Bunnies are about as fertile as you get and eggs should be pretty obvious as well. Which brings me to Easter Egg Hunts… Apparently that too is a Babylonian custom where people "Hunt" for fertility… So next time you're curious why your children are getting pregnant at such young ages, think about how many eggs they found the previous year…

Though I'd be careful about how you go about opening those plastic eggs… It's not always candy…

Easter is an oddball in the Holiday lineup… Especially when you think about how many movies have been made about it. Name the first Easter movie that pops into your head… HOP, right? When did that come out? This year? Think about another Easter movie… There's practically NONE. And it's one of the few holidays that doesn't have some sort of Horror film attached to it… Even Independence Day managed to get Aliens!

I have a suggestion… Alien Doom Bunny Pods.

I guess that's really all I have to say on the subject… Easter's just a funny time of year. So many cultures, so many oddities, so many images in my head… I call it Easter solely because it's easier than saying "Happy Resurrection Day, my brother!", my parents won't say it, but we're both on the same page I think. We know what we're celebrating... It ain't fertility. Come to think of it, with the amount of abortions in the country, I don't think ANYBODY is celebrating their fertile nature... Just sayin'.

Savior Suplex!
~ Mark

Tuesday, April 5, 2011


So yeah... I drew this squirrel. He has an acorn. He looks surprised.
I'm surprised this is the best I got right now,
~ Mark

Monday, April 4, 2011


You know, I'm not sure this illustration requires any sort of description... I've been attempting to draw the Dark Knight himself since the 4th grade... It's kind of sad that this is my strongest effort to date.

To the Fatmobile, Robin!
~ Mark

Sunday, April 3, 2011


So I'm getting married. Those are words which I've practiced saying to myself in fantasy and make-believe for nearly 22 years. You ever notice how if you say a word long enough, it almost doesn't sound like tangible dialect anymore? That's kind of the effect I get from those words. I've been thinking about the concept for so long that now that it's finally happening, I can't wrap my mind around it. I keep thinking the world could end at any moment because now that I'm about to achieve my life's goal, I don't know what I'm gonna do. It was always sort of my end game. Game over… But not in a "oh crap I'm out of quarters" sense.  It's more like beating a game you've spent the greater part of the year trying to accomplish, only to find yourself wandering around the house aimlessly trying to figure out what do next. I suppose kids and a family is the next possible answer… And no doubt, that's my future as well, but how do I take all this in? 22 years of wishing, praying and even begging.

I remember my first crush. First grade. I walked in the room, looked around at all the other students and there she was. Megan L. Holy crap, it was like I had never met a member of the female race before. It was in that moment that I started thinking about the future. I was raised in a Christian home, the ideology was, you meet the girl of your dreams, you get married, you die and go to heaven. Life is simple when you're young and Christian boy. I still remember thinking her buck teeth were like Chicklets from heaven. See, while most boys were giving themselves Ye Olde "Circle, Circle, Dot, Dot" treatment, I was thinking up schemes to "rescue the princess"… Good Lord, there were so many Castles and she was constantly in another. I was the only boy in school playing house instead of football or tag. Megan was always mom, I was always dad… Screw sports, I wanted me a wife! What made that year even more interesting was there was this girl, Rachel M., who used to chase me around the playground at recess and try kissing my hand. I was disgusted by her because I felt like a committed man (sad story is, she ended up being one of the hottest girls in High School. You win some, you lose some). It's how the majority of my crushes went from there on… One crush, one year, no other possibilities. I say one year because every school year you had a different class. I didn't see Megan again frequently until High School when she was in my French Class. Kids get distracted easily, you go through phases of interest. One year I was into Batman Action Figures, the next it was Terminator, the next it was X-Men, and so on and so forth. It was the same with crushes… Sadly, this is a concept most men don't grow out of until they're in their 30s. So sad.

In any case, second grade rolled around and it was Rebecca M. Playing "house" was so last year. I was on to bigger and badder schemes. I remember having some of my friends chase her around the playground so that I could save her and be the hero. It kinda' worked… That is until one of those friends forgot the plan and pushed me over. Brian C… I was forced to improvise and modify my plan. Rather than continue the tough guy hero approach. I fell right over and lied there like I got hurt trying to save her. Her sympathy was mine! … Pathetic. I'm not going to go through every crush I had. The point of all this is, my whole life has revolved around finding that special someone. Every year a new girl, every year a new disappointment. By my third crush, I encountered my first rejection. I finally built up enough nerve to ask out the girl of my dreams. It was 5th grade and her name was Sarah. My Lord, if she wasn't the most beautiful thing a kid could have laid eyes on. I obsessed over asking her out to the point where I was starting to ask my friends for advice. The old "Bro's before Ho's" concept doesn't develop until High School/College and I fell victim to that unfortunate truth. By the time I had built up enough nerve to ask her out in all my grade school innocence (i.e. tell your friend to tell her you like her), it turns out that friend had already asked her out and she accepted. And I got a taste of my very first "Just Friends" speech.

Women. Girls. Females. Please heed my word… Just be rude to boys. Don't say you want to be friends… Say your'e gay and that we're too manly to appease to that preference. It's easier on us AND it's an ego boost like no other.

From here on out it was rejection after rejection after a little more rejection. And as this continued, the concept of marriage began to slip faintly into the realm of science fiction. Sure, a girlfriend here, a girlfriend there… Nothing solid, nothing permanent… Nothing even all that interesting. I'v been turned down, cheated on, toyed with… I've gotten the "friend speech" on a date before the appetizers even came out at dinner… And had to sit through the entire meal with her. Seriously, I'd like to see you TRY to get through a meal like that without ripping your nails out and gritting your teeth to a fine powder. Worst 45 minutes of my life. I loath you, Pollyanna. I even flew down to Florida for a girl only to have her change her mind about her interest in my moments after getting off the plane. I want my money back, !@#$…

If you're not getting the point yet, I'm trying to say finding love is gauntlet of hurt… If you can make it through without finding yourself bi-curious, misogynistic, dead or socially awkward, then you find something more rare and precious than anything today's culture can offer you. You see, I think people all too often give up, settle or try to out-devastate the opposite sex in some horribly twisted game of cat and mouse. The world tells you to conquer as many women as you can until your libido is ready to settle down and admit defeat. At the end of that road is little more than two tired, worn out people with too much baggage to settle down with each other. It's why so many don't even bother to unpack. It's easier to visit and hit the road again.

I'm happy that my relationships were few and far between… I feel like I have more to give. Despite how hard it was to see that light at the end of the tunnel, I kept running towards it. That light is mere days away from me and I can't even sleep I'm so excited. That's why it's 6:13 in the morning and I've been up for over an hour. Do I wish this could have come sooner? Absolutely… But I'm grateful it didn't. Through all the rejection and hurt, I came to appreciate what it is to be with someone who truly loves you as much as you've been yearning to love them. Had we found each other sooner, I may have taken it for granite and ultimately ruined the whole thing. Truth be told I'm happier than I've ever been in my life… And after two years with this woman I can safely conclude it's not the hype of a new relationship, or the captivation of laying my eyes on a beautiful woman for the first time.

Rachael, it's like you've replenished my faith in a heart's single desire to catch the ear of God and grant a miracle. You excite me now just as you did when we first laughed together in Portland, Maine. I haven't stopped laughing with you since and I plan to laugh with you through all of life's comedy. I love you to the point of insomnia and I hope I don't sleep through a single moment with you.

So much closer,
~ Mark