(from Robot Portraits)

In about 72 hours I'll be in a hotel in Atlanta, anxiously awaiting the start of Dragon*Con.  It's my first visit to this particular event and it will mark the first out of state convention I've been to in 7 years; the last being Chicago's Wizard World in 2005 where I unsuccessfully tried to sell my comic.

This time around I won't have any artwork to sell and sadly I won't be dressing up.  However, my lovely lady WILL be dressing up as Rei Ayanami from Neon Genesis Evangeleon.  She's very excited as this is her first all handmade costume.  We'll also be traveling with a friend who was wonderful enough to book our hotel WAY ahead of time.

To that end, I wanted to say that if you ARE planning on going to Dragon*Con, and you spot me there, I"ll have a QR code pasted on my person or pack somewhere.  If you scan it and email me or text me and place an order, I'll do an additional character sketch card for free.  "Ah, but how will you know I was there.  Can't I just place an order?"  Nay!!  You'll have to include a very special piece of information to get it, something you'll only know if we meet in person:  The shirt I'm wearing.

I'm very proud of my shirts.  They are of a style that is hard to find.  So if you see me, and you like the idea of getting a robot portrait AND a sketch card for virtually nothing, all you have to do is tell me what I wore when we met.

Even if you come by this page after scanning the QR and you don't remember or didn't see the shirt, let's face it, for what I'm charging, it wouldn't make any sense for you NOT to order something.  Right?

So I hope to see some of you fans out there.  Feel free to email if you're going and mayhaps we can share a beverage.

Carry on!



A friend recently linked this article and it's been floating around a while.  10 Pranks That Will Spice Up Your Relationship.  Read that first, then come back here.

The first time I read this, my initial revulsion gave way to complete disbelief.  On the heels of this wonderful blog post written by the most caring and sensitive human alive, I began to think that maybe romance is dying.  Do we have to pull cute pranks on each other?  Are we so cynical that creative, endearing proposals are sickening and exploitative?

Here are my responses to Fox News' 10 sweet pranks.

1. Don't do any of this shit.

Seriously, are you 5?  Gluing a coin to the floor?  Making up items on a list for a grocery trip?  Are you bloody kidding me?  I swear, there's a sentence in there that says, "...start laughing and pointing."  And we wonder why there's a bullying problem.

Here's what the article says to me.  In order to "spice up" your relationship, you should be sneaky and slightly hurtful.  Nothing turns a man on like making him feel small and stupid.

If you're going to stuff crap in his shoe or tape something to his mouse, just leave the note instead.  A note by the front door saying, "Take your clothes off and come find me" is a lot more "spicey" that "Hey, doofus, there's tissue paper in your shoe.  Aren't you a piece of work?!"  If you're going to pull a prank, do one together.  Make prank phone calls together and laugh about it.  Walk around town together and stare forlornly into cafe windows and wait for people to get uncomfortable.  Make up silly accents and ask for directions.

The point is, the more you do together, the less work your relationship will need.


A New Chapter

Corn Field
Originally uploaded by xadrian.
This last week I helped Tiger Lily move to Illinois. As you may know, she's going for her masters degree and U of I gave her the best offer. It may be that she will also go for her doctorate at the same school.

This started out as a simple matter of driving up in a moving van and spending a few days together before I flew back to Austin. We later found out that her parents were taking a trip to the Ozarks. It was decided that we'd meet for an overnight stay in Little Rock, then a few days in the Ozarks, before making the last drive up to Champaign.

The trip was stressful and there were more than a few things that went awry, but none were catastrophic and in the end it was a very kind gesture on the part of her parents to put us up and get us a few meals along the way. They also helped unpack and got TL some needed supplies.

The trip was fraught with small details that made it both trying and interesting. They won't enrich this story any more than me recapping the dream I had last night. In the end it became a small vacation; one in which I left my best friend before returning.

I probably shouldn't write anything this close to the event, but I know my family will have questions and want to know if I'm doing okay. Despite writing this I'm sure they will ask anyway. I will say that yes, eventually, I will be okay. We've known this was going to happen so at least it's not a shock in addition to the separation. However, that doesn't make it any easier.

I am very sad. I will be sad for quite some time. I hope I don't feel this way for two years. While I haven't lost my best friend, she isn't around any more. The sadness comes from the knowledge that after almost 4 years, I'll be sleeping alone, eating alone and experiencing events alone. I will have my kids and The Ladies around all the time and that's some solace. And I'm doing my best to stay busy and positive, but the sheer "apart-ness" of it is going to be crushing.

A couple we were friends with recently posted that they were ending their engagement. They were very cute and happy and seemed destined to be together. About 15 months ago She went to school in China and he moved to Oklahoma. After considerable examination, they decided their worlds were just too far apart and despite being great friends, they just couldn't be in a romantic, intimate relationship.

Yes I'm worried that will happen with us.

We aren't engaged but there is little doubt that one day we will be. Ms. A asked how long until I move to Illinois and my gut reaction was to say I'm not going to, but then I remembered saying goodbye at the airport and now I'm not so sure.

So now I'm a sci-fi character that moves between worlds, never truly belonging to either. With TL out of Austin, I'm going to spend more time with the kids, and that's a positive. But at the possibility of not seeing TL for 7 years, my heart is going to be constantly pulled toward those corn fields.