In the world of
RUBBER, YOU'RE GLUE....
-by Andrew Goletz
Various Reflections and Observations
So this is my first
column as a parent. As I mentioned on the Publisher’s
Page, I’ll be taking a brief leave of absence to concentrate on being
a father. Everyone, including myself, has opinions about how this will
change my life. Of course, I know it’s going to be a change. Most
likely it’s going to change me in ways I can’t image. I am now responsible (along with my wife) for the life of
another human begin. Small measure of anxiety mixed with an overwhelming
sense of joy and anticipation. I pray that God gives us the strength to
be good parents and above all, that we have a happy, healthy bundle of
joy. Right now, nothing else really matters to me.
But the show must
go on. Gotta finish this damn column before I can concentrate on the
aforementioned family responsibilities, so let’s do this Larry King
December promotion. An ‘event’ that is going to push the creative
talents of all involved. Marvel’s been pushing the envelope in terms
of what they’ve been willing to try with their titles. Having a month
where their comics will have no dialogue or words whatsoever is going to
truly show the cohesiveness between a good writer/artist team. This will
be a fun way to end the year.
The Waiting Place.
Written and created by Sean McKeever, this is the best comic book
you’re not reading. It’s real life the way it ought to be depicted
in comic books: honest, emotionally and lite on melodrama. Published by
Slave Labor Graphics. www.slavelabor.com
Dave Sim. Needs
more coverage from mainstream, indie and fan press. The creator, writer
and artist of Cerebus recently published the 263rd
consecutive issue of his self-published title. 263. It’s the comic
equivalent of Cal Ripken Jr breaking the ‘Iron Horse’s record.
Oscar Snubs. Every
year there seems to be a couple films that aren’t recognized, but this
year seems to have more glaring omissions than usual. No Wonderboys,
High Fidelity or Unbreakable?
From Hell. Forget
‘Planet of the Apes’ or ‘Harry Potter’, or even ‘Lord of the
Rings’. The film I’m anticipating the most in 2001 is ‘From
Hell’, the Hughes Brothers adaptation of the greatest comic book ever
produced. If it’s ½ as good as the comic book, this film will win
football in the Spring! No fair catches! Owned by Vince McMahon! This is
going to be a huge success for NBC and everyone else involved. Maybe The
Hitmen will win a game by the time this column goes up.
CSI on CBS. So what
if it slaps realism and procedure in the face? This is one of the most
fascinating shows on television and while it used to be a reason to stay
home Fridays, the move to post Survivor Thursdays has given the showed a
well deserved, larger audience.
Voices of Insight.
‘Teachers of Buddhism in the West share their wisdom, stories and
experience of insight meditation’. This book came out more than a year
ago, but I was only recently able to read it. It’s a fantastic
collection, edited by Sharon Salzberg and published by Shambhala
Publications/Distributed by Random House.
is the greatest living Rock and Roll performer in the world. Kudos to
HBO for their plans to present a Springsteen concert in April. When are
we going to be fortunate enough to get a new CD from this guy,
preferably with the E Street Band?
Gangster Rap. Is
there anything more ‘over’ in music than this? You’re bad. We get
Drunk Drivers. Need
to have their licenses revoked on the first offense. If you endanger the
lives of others, a slap on the wrist, a fine or short-term suspension
isn’t punishment enough. When you drink and drive, you’re committing
an act of attempted murder, plain and simple.
Ignored Emails. Pet
peeve of mine, considering the amount of time it takes to track down a
comic professional or singer or actor’s contact information. The least
one can do, after being asked about their interest in being interviewed,
is a simple reply, even if it’s ‘no’. My intolerance for this may
lead to a new feature here at GHM, which could be announced shortly.
Some of you were
less than thrilled about my previous column, which called on web sites
and web site administrators to take a more active roll in cleaning up
their message boards through the banning of posters who insist on
insulting other posters, slandering creators and spreading unfounded
rumors all while saying safely anonymous.
“…I think it
was unprofessional to single out your competitors like Wizard and
Ain’t It Cool, just to make yourself look better. I’m sure if they
focused on Gray Haven as much as you focused on their sites, they’d
find plenty to talk about. Hypocrite...”
Me: The day we’re
doing numbers like Wizard and Ain’t it Cool and can be called
competitors will be a very good day. As for the challenge: let them (or
you, if you’d like) find where I contradict myself and then we’ll
receives 10 times as many visitors and gets 10 times as many messages as
your site. It’s understandable that they’ll have more problems with
moronic posters that will be difficult to monitor. Your column was
Me: Good point, but
I would argue that a larger site should have preparations in place
before things get out of control. Whether the site is getting 5 visitors
a day or 500,000, the people in charge should be ready to deal with it.
It’s part of the responsibility of having a site.
“…I went to WW
and read what you posted regarding the Quesada/McFarlane debate.
You’re just as guilty as blatantly and blindly kissing up to Quesada
as the people who attack him unjustly...”
Me: You’d think
these were all from the same person, right? Wrong. Seems that comic fans
reacted stronger than most to the column in question. As for this
man’s statement, I think defending someone against slanderous
allegations is a little different than posting lies and innuendos about
“…I find it in
bad taste for someone who runs a website of their own to criticize other
sites. You should be able to rise above these discussions and lead by
example, which means not participating in mud slinging...”
Me: I visit Wizard
World and Ain’t it Cool and many other sites on the Internet. I
wouldn’t do that if I didn’t like the sites themselves. The column
was about the responsibility of those sites to monitor and react to the
types of posts that are put on their own message boards. We’ve tried
to immediately remove and or ban any message board postings on GHM that
spread unfounded rumor, that slander people, or that are hateful in
nature or criticize unjustly without offering an email address for
response. That’s leading by example.
interesting to see that a person who is a fan of comic books and films
and creative expression is so quick to advocate censorship…”
Me: I wanted to
debate this woman on our site, but she politely declined. Her letter was
well written and insightful, although I didn’t agree with any of her
points. Maybe she’ll change her mind after she reads this. As I
mentioned to her in a follow up email, I don’t believe that deleting
posts of this nature is censorship. When you post a message slandering
someone or spreading a rumor you know is untrue, but don’t reveal your
identity for the purpose of having a mature debate, you lose your right
to self-expression. Besides,
there are certain rules that must be followed, even in cyber world. You
can’t sell an adult magazine to a minor. We can’t post graphic
pictures on this site as per the regulations with the host. That’s not
censorship. One knows heading into it, that the site is maintained under
certain guidelines. You follow them or you move on. I recommend that
fans that are unhappy with the way we run this site do the same.
Me Again: Those
weren’t the only letters I received about the column, and believe it
or not, they weren’t even all negative. For the sake of entertainment,
though, I decided to run the most interesting ones, which happened to be
the negative ones.
The End (for
Thanks to everyone
who offered their words of encouragement and best wishes. I appreciate
it. We appreciate it. For the next couple of months, Gray Haven will be
in the more than capable hands of Carrie Michael and Barry Wolborsky. Go
easy on them, okay? And I’ll see you in a month or two.
Copyright©2001 Andrew P. Goletz