Let me get into the interesting details behind this week’s Dustinland comic.
See, I drew the first half based on my daily annoyances that are pretty well spelled out in the strip. But then, after it was all done and even uploaded, this morning I listened to an episode of This American Life, which I never do on my commute, because I never do the podcast thing, always opting for music instead. And this episode, it was about a French comedian trying to make it in America. At one point Jeff Garland is critiquing his set, and just goes off. “He’s a craftsman, but he’s not an artist because I don’t care about what he’s talking about. He doesn’t care! Talk about what you care about! That’s interesting!”
And I was inspired to go deeper with this strip. Because as you can see, I do care. It’s about the principle. Not just the bag, not just the minor inconvenience. Every time this happens, I think about all this stuff, all this human nature misery. It riles me up. That’s why I care. And now you know. Thanks, Ira Glass!
Posted in New York
Tagged commute, commuter train, commuting, hudson valley, irvington, metro north, MTA, new york, new york city, NYC, river towns, subway, tarrytown, train, trains, westchester
There’s a lot of the subway sweaty butt seat thing I talk about in this week’s comic going on right now in New York, but I must say, it is not a phenomenon exclusive to summer. You see it all year long. And sweat is not really the right word. When you hear “sweat” you think actually liquid that can drip and form puddles. Really though, it’s more like what happens when you breathe on a window and it fogs up. I guess it’s just asses breathing. Asses, thighs and backs, that is. Ass breath is something completely different.
Yup, I’m really going highbrow this week.
This week’s Dustinland is usually not a big problem for me since I rarely indulge in a guilty reading pleasure. I really do mostly enjoy non-fiction (but only about cool stuff like people falling off Everest or dudes dying while drilling tunnels or how rough life was back in 1902 on the Bowery) or classics or other “good” books that you read about on Best of the Year lists. But sometimes I get bored and just want to relax into a fantasy world that does not in anyway remind me of my own life, and that’s when I go for some sci-fi. Good sci-fi is really hard to find though. I haven’t read much at all, and just stepping foot in the sci-fi section at Barnes & Noble makes me want to puke. Everything looks like crap a 14-year-old in 1972 would love. So unless you have a really dorky friend who can give you good recommendations, you’re stuck browsing Amazon for lists. And then, once you finally do find a good sci-fi fantasy nerd book, you get what this week’s comic is about: a horrible cover that poorly represents the masterpiece you hold in front of you. Sure, you can tell everyone else about how the book is a classic, a metaphor for the Vietnam war, the book that inspired Stephen King to become a writer… but it doesn’t matter, because you’re holding a paperback with an exploding spaceship on it. The same goes for every genre out there — just replace the exploding spaceship with submarines, slamming gavels, or quivering bosoms.
Check it out. So far people seem most excited about the “Mad Preggers” shirt in frame two.
When you live in New York, you know commuting by subway is enough to drive you insane. This morning my train was so crowded and full of crazy people, angry lunatics and smelly, dirty homeless people, it gave me the impression that the entire world is going insane and that I better get out of NYC while I’m still relatively normal. Too late perhaps but at least I can draw almost funny comics. So that’s what this weeks Dustinland is about. I’ve been wanting to do this one for a while, although now that I think about it, if I could rearrange it, I think I would make “Shut your screaming baby up” an official commandment and make it 11. Crying baby on a morning commute? Pure hell.
In other news, there are some ads on the site now. All part of a little experiment I call “Making money so I can pay for things.” Hopeful it works out well for everyone involved.