Hard Underbelly  

The official news spot for Hard Underbelly.


Mood: Decent
Music: Alarm Call; by Bjork

I just the finished the artwork for Monday and Wednesday's comics.

I recently realized that I have failed to mention the amateur slayer's name in the comic. Well, it is Casey, and it will be used in the comic on Monday. Just assume that the characters exchanged names on the way to the bar for drinks.

This post is coming to you from my mother's house. Today I installed a new mailbox. It was fun. I also helped my brother's friend move into our house, because, basically, his stepmom is kinda nuts.

However, this is not a post about any of those things. This is actually a post about something else entirely.

The island I am from, Vashon, has a history of high school students getting themselves killed at an alarming rate. That rate is actually twice the average of fatalities for a high school. The average marijuana use at our school is also twice the norm. Coincidence? I think not. But still, we have not quite reached what I wanted to talk about, and that is adults.

The adults on the island have a tendency to pretend this stuff away. People are always surprised at the number of fatalities, but I think it's no wonder, when all the cops do to break up a party is send everyone home, drunk or not. So there has recently been a 'zero-tolerance' policy announced on underage drinking on the island. This is not a perfect solution, but it's better than what we had before. Personally, I think the best idea would be for the cops to carry a whole bunch of those steel boot things in the back of their squadcars. Then, when they come across a party, they don't break it up or anything, they just quietly go around and attach them to the wheels of all the cars. That way, no one can drive home drunk. They could call for a ride from someone sober, or just stay the night, but there'd be a lot less students drunk or stoned off their asses hitting the road.

Anyway, I was saying that adults are always stunned when some kid kills himself behind the wheel 'cause he was too baked to tell right from left. The fundamental problem here is a lack of education. A lot of parents seem to feel that the best way to keep their kids from drinking is to not tell them about drinking at all. This is stupid. A much better policy is regularly show those disturbing videos of dead people in car wrecks that you usually only see in driver's ed.

Why do adults think hiding from awful things will keep them from happening? I've noticed a trend among young, unwed mothers. A lot of them are very religious. Religious parents tend to be against sex education. So why do all these theoretically good, christian girls end up with kids before they're twenty? Because their parents were too scared to tell them what a condom is. The worst part is, these parents will then deny their daughter the option of abortion. By rights, it's the parents fault that this hypothetical girl is pregnant, due to their prurient inability to tell their daughter how to make responsible choices in life, and then they saddle their kid with a kid of her own. Way to fuck up there, Mr. and Mrs. Catholic.

I suppose this has also kind of morphed into a rant about why I am against organized religion. Don't get me wrong, I think religion is great, but organized religion is where the problem is. Organized religion has been the source of some the worst things in history. When religion gets too organized, stuffy, and egotistical, things like the Holocaust, witch burning, and the general retardation of science happen. Just think where science would be today if we hadn't spent centuries afraid to study the natural world for fear of retribution from the church. Galileo would have found out so much more. Evolutionary theory could have gone so much farther. If we'd gotten an earlier start, the technology of today would be much more advanced.

Okay, I'm just going all over the place with this one. I think I'll call it quits on this rant right here.

Ending Music: Like Spinning Plates (live off of I Might Be Wrong); by Radiohead

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  posted by Tristan @ 7:19 PM

Saturday, May 10, 2003  


Mood: Decent
Music: I Don't Like Mondays; by the Boomtown Rats

Okay, the new comic is up now. It's done with colored pencil in the psuedo-flashback. Drawings like this illustrate why I don't usually color things by hand. I could color the comics by computer, and there are times when I probably will, but I've found that when I do that, the comics end up looking very flat. So we're gonna stick with black and white. Anyway, I like this comic mostly because of the amusing expression and gestures that lil' Casey is making at the end.

I'm going to try a few different image formats in the future, in an attempt to reduce the comic size. I know the files are a tad on the large size, but if I turn down the quality any more, it's really detrimental to their appearance.

Ending Music: Only A Lad; by Oingo Boingo

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  posted by Tristan @ 10:16 AM

Friday, May 09, 2003  


Mood: Irritated
Music: The Girl From Ipanema; by thr Pizzicato Five

Well, as of right now, the new comic is not up. I've tried to update it manually, but KeenSpace seems to be kind of bogged down right now. I think it'll be up within the hour, but quite frankly, I'm guessing here. I have no idea when it'll be up. Hopefully soon.

Anyway, there's a sketch from my trip to the zoo up in the art pages. It's an orangutan.

I really hope that the comic updates soon.

Ending Music: Hem Of Your Garment; by Cake

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  posted by Tristan @ 9:36 AM


Mood: Subcutaneous
Music: Da Da Da; by Trio

So I am yet again wondering about how to advertise my comic. My new thought is that I should try out the whole webcam thing. That way I can have my URL posted in the bottom of the picture, thus directing people to my site. However, webcams are often kind of sad. Also, I am completely unaware as to how to set one up. I have a digital camera, but I'm having trouble figuring out how to use it as a webcam. All the webcam apps I've found are horribly bizarre and refuse to recognize my camera.

I've been playing Unreal II on my buddy Caleb's computer. I'm on the fence about that game. On the one hand, the graphics are spectacular. They're stunning. It's a level of realism that is only rivaled by Devestation. Unfortunately, the gameplay is terrible. Some of the action is fine, but the game itself is way to dependant on scripted events. It's also way to linear. It lacks the nice, open-air feeling that made the original Unreal game so great. I'm also really not to thrilled with the cut scenes. Everytime you start a mission it shows your dropship leaving the Atlantis, and then it goes and loads the mission. It's just a bunch of wasted time. The other folks on your ship are also really irritating and unlikable. And the lack of what you can say when talking with people is really irritating. Sure, you've got options, but they're not the kind of options that let you state your own opinions. For instance, in the game you get reinstated to the marines, which is kind of a double-edged sword in that it's pretty clear that the marines are not working towards the common good. However, you can only say excited things about being back in the marines, so you get the rest of your crew a little pissed off at you. It's irritating.

In other gaming news, World of Warcraft looks to be about the greatest thing since sliced bread. And the forthcoming Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy looks excellent as well. Anyone with half a brain can tell you that the only Star Wars game series worth it's salt is Dark Forces/Jedi Knight. And Jedi Academy looks cool, especcially since you can customize your character's race, gender, appearance, and lightsaber color and style (between single, staff -a la Darth Maul- or double handed, like in Attack of the Clones). I'm gonna go double lightsaber, all the way.

I just realized, the Clones didn't really attack. They actually came to the rescue. Huh. Not only was the title shitty, but it was wrong in respect to the movie as well.

Ending Music: Regrets; by Ben Folds Five

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  posted by Tristan @ 11:22 AM

Wednesday, May 07, 2003  


Mood: Satisfied
Music: Porecelina Of The Vast Oceans; by Smashing Pumpkins

It took a little bit, but I have now edited the template match my style. This is what the template originally looked like. Considering that my knowledge of HTML is fairly basic, and I have no guide telling me how to do these things, I get a big kick out of editing a template to suite my needs.

Anyway, as for Hard Underbelly news, there will be a new comic up tomorrow, and on Friday, we'll have a special color comic. Yay for me.

And now for some completely non-comic news. I went to the zoo for class yesterday. I saw lots of animals. There was a small armadillo in the Nocturnal House that was running in figure eight. When I was there on Easter, he was doing the same thing. He must be demented. There was also a really cute slow loris. I tell ya', Monday morning is the time to go to the zoo. No one else is there. We had the nocturnal house all to ourselves, and the lack of screaming children kept the animals from being too shy to come out, so we got a really good look at all the nocturnal beasties. I drew some quick sketches of some of the animals, and one or two of those might find their way onto the art pages.

That is all.

Ending Music: Is This Real; by Phantom Planet

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  posted by Tristan @ 10:52 AM

Tuesday, May 06, 2003  


Mood: Busy
Music: Stop Whispering; By Radiohead

Well, I am now getting to work on this blog. This is now the official news spot for Hard Underbelly, my on-line comic, and I am working to set the termplate of this blog to match the main site's style a little better.

A few things to get out of the way: Go see X2. Hi mom. Hooray for having no school today.

Ending Music: Rest Awhile; by They Might Be Giants

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  posted by Tristan @ 10:00 AM

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