Soz I haven’t posted in a bit. Life has been intense the last couple of weeks and on top of it I have sensed going into year 2 that OBOP has a little bit lost direction and as I’ve mentioned before, I do not have the time nor energy to keep producing 3.5 posts a week and a drawing on top of my new job and everything else.
I will write more about the changes in a later post but what I can say is that the schedule will revert back to twice a week (usually) keeping Mystery Monday and Funny Friday. The focus of Monday’s Mystery will be more closely related to something literary or linguistic (but this still allows for the flexibility of writing about music and non-book literature because it’s still gotta be mysterious, yo!) and Funny Fridays will continue on mostly as usual but with a stronger canonical/continuing story line. I plan to make a new section, since the comics fall into two catagories: “typical Funny Friday comic” non-canonical/for the pun and “The Adventures of Fin and Louie” canonical/forwarding the story.
Anyway today’s comic was inspired by my galpal who has this phrase she uses for when you like finish someone’s thought or know what they’re thinking before they do, “…like thoughts falling from the sky” which because my brain is strange and scary place I immediately thought about how terrifying that could be if the thoughts were rain drops and the brains were heavy clouds it’d make a…Brainstorm
Happy Halloween from us at Offbeat Onpoint! Have a safe and wonderful holiday.
I’m making a Halloween present for my favourite little dude. What do you think? I’m pretty happy with how the wooden handle texture looks on the axe personally but what do you think? Feel free to leave a comment below or share if you liked.
FYI I will be taking Monday off but I will be posting my first St Louis Shines interview with an incredibly interesting and entertaining man, Lucian Storm. Check back in on Halloween for the full interview.
I plan to rework the site a bit soon to reflect the changes in posting schedules and frequencies which will include a central location for The Adventures of Fin and Louie. I’ll probably title it some thing kinda stupidly self-referential like “The story so far…”
I’ve had this comic idea for a while, since before I even moved to the city, when I first heard a co worker ask for a “square”. This has always been an odd phrase to me, mostly because growing up I thought of a “square” with reference to a carpenter’s square. Then talking to my friend the other day she mentioned that it never made sense that they called a carpenter’s square a “square” rather it should be a triangle or an “L”(1). Which reminded me of the original question: why is it called a square?
These are carpenter’s squares, though the first one should be called a triangle. It is basic geometry.
When I decided to look into the origin of “square” with reference to “cigarette” I got more than I anticipated.
The original, the square, I read from Urban Dictionary “The box that cigarettes come in ressembles a square. Hence the name, “square” for a cigarette.” (Source: Urban Dictionary – smoke a square) however I was cirious as to how many commonly recognised names are there for smokes?
This list does a decent job covering street etymologies but it reminded me of one slang that’s still rather common, at least in Northern England, “fag” with regard to a cigarette. For my American readers, you can probably imagine my shock hearing “fag” being used so causally in conversation when I went over to the UK, particularly in front of my fellow American housemate who was a gay man. I got curious as to how “fag” came to mean both “cigarette” or a gay man, depending on who you asked, and the answer is disturbing.
late 13c., “bundle of twigs bound up,” also fagald, faggald, from Old French fagot “bundle of sticks” (13c.), of uncertain origin, probably from Italian fagotto “bundle of sticks,” diminutive of Vulgar Latin *facus, from Latin fascis “bundle of wood” (see fasces).
Especially used for burning heretics (emblematic of this from 1550s), so that phrase fire and faggot was used to indicate “punishment of a heretic.” Heretics who recanted were required to wear an embroidered figure of a faggot on the sleeve as an emblem and reminder of what they deserved.
I’m sure you can see the general direction this is headed, or at least I thought I knew where this was going. I was told whilst over there that faggot began to be used to describe someone who was publicly executed at the stake however a bit of reading shines an interesting new light on the sad history of the slang word.
The explanation that male homosexuals were called faggots because they were burned at the stake as punishment is an etymological urban legend. Burning sometimes was a punishment meted out to homosexuals in Christian Europe (on the suggestion of the Biblical fate of Sodom and Gomorrah), but in England, where parliament had made homosexuality a capital offense in 1533, hanging was the method prescribed. Use of faggot in connection with public executions had long been obscure English historical trivia by the time the word began to be used for “male homosexual” in 20th century American slang, whereas the contemptuous slang word for “woman” (in common with the other possible sources or influences listed here) was in active use early 20c., by D.H. Lawrence and James Joyce, among others.
The actual origin of the term faggot/fag with reference to a gay man came into use in the early 20 century when it was used to contemptuously refer to women (a faggot being something awkward which has to be carried).
However to say that the usage of the word “faggot” hasn’t changed since I was a kid, getting bullied being called shit like “faggot” and “gay”, would be a sad disservice to the nature of linguistics. In our “pop-pc culture” there’s an insistent need to get very triggered over anything slightly offensive which I get, we live in a culture that for a very long time did not think about intention or cultivate value in being thoughtful with how we express ourselves not just for efficiency purposes but also to raise collective emotional intelligence.
What I get hung up on is how reluctant people are to accept that the process of reclamation is uncomfortable at first and that requires us to FUCKING TALK ABOUT IT instead of this popular notion to talk louder or to “agree to disagree” and avoid any real discussion for fear of hurting someone’s feelings. For example, I take issue with people who are trying to make claims about curvy being a derogatory term for “fat”.
(Source: Dictionary.com – curvy)
Literally from the dictionary, defines an object as having curves. It doesn’t make a statement about size until it’s assigned that definition and then why is “big” considered bad? It’s like we live in a fucking Grimm Faerie tale where big = bad = wolf therefore anything big or wolf like (or uncanny(2)) and everyone is both the wolf and little red riding hood depending on who you ask and more importantly this pop-pc culture seems to be label obsessed, which I believe partly if not wholly reinforces this “border war” on what words are acceptable and who can use these certain words which misses the entire point of raising collective emotional intelligence: learning to listen for intention rather than learning to hear keywords.
Next time someone calls you a faggot or says you have a fat ass, try and stop your self before getting triggered and think: what was their intention? Now if their intention was to hurt your feelings, HELL YEA GO FUCKING APE SHIT ON THEM…or like not, but maybe if they’re a decent human being and you’re feeling brave have a conversation with them about that phrase and maybe after a little talking you two may teach each other something. Cheesis knows there’s already enough free floating confusion and anger out there.
Take care of yourselves and talk to one another, folks. We’re all in this together.
Tune in Monday for a very high spirited book review of Jim Crace’s “The Pesthouse”.
I’m glad they don’t call the carpenter’s square an “L” otherwise this joke would fall apart because I’m not cool enough to be rolling around with pre-rolled Ls, that’s like next level.
I’m referring to the uncanny as a trope in Gothic Literature where the object of anxiety and fear is manifested in a monster which is frequently somewhere between human and beast (think Dracula being very animistic, think all were-wolf stories, think Dr. Frankenstein’s monster, think.) as a representation that there are things that “appear human” but are not quite actually human.
I ran into a friend, Conor, and he told me he turned some of his mates onto my comics. So this comic is dedicated to Conor and his mates, also Lauren for introducing me to Conor. This one’s for you Lauren, Conor, and mates, Cheers!
We are accepting poetry and fiction submissions for a once a month reader submitted writing contest. We will announce the winner and post their content on the last Saturday of each month. All participants will get a reply and feedback on piece, regardless of whether your piece is ultimately chosen. No one looses in this contest. 🙂 To submit and for more information, click here.
I am also accepting fan art submissions. I’ll post pretty much whatever I’m sent on Fridays. Please keep it SFW/appropriate, legible, etc and include who would would like be to be credited as (Ex “Fan Art thanks to [your name]). Content and quality are important but heart is the most important part. Feel free to click here to submit or tag me on Instagram (@fin.louie), Facebook (offbeat on point), or twitter (@offbeatonpoint).
Happy Friday and happy one year to Offbeat On-point!
May 2017 – May 2018: year 2
As I mentioned one year ago today in my very first post, I’m going to do one of these each year. Probably more “rewrite” rather than “update” the first few years at least because the idea with the first one was to introduce myself and the blog. Also I had no idea what to do for my first post and figured something relatively static would be a good start. This year I’ve decided to use this post as an opportunity to shape this into a yearly “state of the blog” sort of post. A look back at the year past, where we are, where we want to be, how we plan to get there, and maybe most imporant and interesting, why we’re working so hard to get there.
So gather around my fellow Cyberpunks, Rebels who Read, Digital Nomads, and the lot of us, while we take a look about what this upcoming season holds for you and I and everyone.
2017-2018 Offbeat On-point Manifesto
A Look Back:
This first year has been pretty incredible and I have quite a list of people to thank. This list is by no mean’s exhaustive but it was the best I could do.
Thank you Andreas Beats for my first interview and an exclusive track
Thank you MC Chris for all the excellent music you’ve put out over the years and listening to me ramble on at your show for like 10 minutes and thank you for the signature and if you’re reading this, I still want that interview…please
We’ve gotten this far but I can do better and here is what I am actively doing right now towards a better blog. I hired on a co-editor/writer, Brad Evans, who I will be working with. He will also be starting a new column on Tuesdays. He’s going to post next Tuesday for the first time further explaining his plan of action.
I will continue with my four columns Mystery Monday, Rewind Wednesday, Thursday Night at the Cinema, and Funny Friday mostly as usual but some will see some minor changes. MM: I am focusing on doing more book reviews but it will remain a wild card because I personally need the flexibility to have a wild card column.
RW: I plan to keep posting but to use it as a launching platform for OBOP Radio. Then the Wednesday post will have the tracklist what I played that day and maybe a short script. I would also like to do band interview’s via podcast or video in the future if I can make it work.
TN@C: I plan to continue as usual with this column. Someday I would like to get caught up on telly series and movies I’ve missed in the last few months/years and write about them here.
FF: I plan to keep on course with the comics, I will use this also as “fan art day”. When I get more fan art I’ll post it with the next Friday comic then add it to the fan art page. When I figure out animation, I’ll post Fin & Louie animation shorts here but I will likely primarly stick to drawing comics.
I’m coming back to St Louis to build a local audience as I believe that the strong communal and entrepreneurial culture is the best place for me to build my audience. Also St Louis has a rich literary and music history with greats like Mark Twain and the late Chuck Berry coming from St louis. On a more personal note, I have a much more well developed support network professionally in St Louis and generally as reluctant as I am to say so, I do miss her. She’s a good city and I’m looking forward to coming home to her.
I’ve made some wonderful strides with The Big River Chronicles. A few weeks ago, I had this…“moment of clarity” (I really have no better way to express it). I conceived the idea in 2010 and have been slowly turning it over for years. It started as one book, then became a couple, now it’s a trilogy. It’s all come, come to think of it, out feet first or that is to say backwards. I have had the outline and cast for the third book for sometime now and have had a decent sketch for the second volume but book one was always a mystery to me beyond the beginning and the ending until I had this “moment of clarity” where everything just kind of fell into place while I was out walking around and played out in my mind’s eye like remembering a movie that’s never been made. Now having the outline for all three and therefore the meta narrative outline, I’ve found writing to be both more straight-forward and easier to systematically produce.
Speaking of books, I’m announcing here for the first time The Fin & Louie Comic book. I think I can put out a small comic book each year (I was thinking 42 pages) depending on interest.
A Look Forward:
Looking forward, there are a few things I would like to get going this year:
OBOP Radio – hopeful launch late September 2017
Merch (bookmarks, stickers, business cards, etc) – Summer 2017
Fin & Louie animation shorts – 2017/2018 ¯_(ツ)_/¯
A Plan of Action:
A Band of Misprints (Big River Chronicles book 1) – 3000+ words a week until it’s done
OBOP (Offbeat On-point) Radio: I am looking into buying a laptop and a microphone.
Merch in design pricing out companies for stickers and business cards.
Fin & Louie animation shorts – needs equipment and software.
Book sell/swap – I’d like to start buying/selling/trading books not only online with readers but also in St Louis. I will be looking into vendor stalls eventually but first I’ll try my luck setting up a small stand on Cherokee st or in the Delmar Loop or somewhere with a lot of foot traffic and I won’t get harassed (hopefully).
#ThePostItProject – I was made aware of this brilliant little project from a one of my instagram followers called #ThePostItProject. The idea is to write a positive/uplifting message on a post-it note and place it in a book with your instagram/twitter/whatever information and set the book back free in the wild. The twist I would like to see is when you take a picture and tag me, I’ll send you some free merch. It’s a win-win for everyone: you find a random compliment in a book, if you pic and tag, I get more views and you get free schwag. Let’s see how big this game can get, shall we?
A Reason for this Season:
I have believers level faith that with persistence that I can make this a full time writing job or get a job I want doing this blog, more so than what university can fully offer me
and especially more than any non-media job can teach me.
More powerful a motivator to me is that I have a blue-white hot passion for books, culture, art, writing, and storytelling. My ultimate goal is to build an intentional community of readers and creators who are equally passionate together and mix our ideas, celebrate our victories, and be supportive of each while we all grow. I’m still looking for volunteer writers/editors and I’m always open to suggestions for books you want to see me review, music you want to see featured, if you’re in a band and looking for some free publicity reach out with some samples, or if you have anything you want to say, sans shit posting (just don’t do it), leave a comment below.
I have brought on board a co-editor/writer and he will be writing here a few times a week. We’re still discussing column ideas but we are going to have a dedicated book column on Tuesdays, I will still be doing book reviews on Mondays whenever I don’t have another mystery lined up. We are talking about doing a Saturday column for poetry and short stories and such.
I am still looking for writers, content editors, etc. If you’re interested feel free to contact us and let us know why you feel like you’d be a good addition to the obop team.
Speaking of contacting us, if you follow my instagram (@fin.louie) you’ll have seen I got my first pieces of fan art!
This has inspired me to start a fan art page. If you would like to send me any fan art, feel free! We love getting stuff like this over here! I got these pieces a solid three weeks ago and I’m STILL buzzin’!
Coming Back to St Louis:
I’ve had my old job offered back to me and a place to stay in St Louis which, being a hobo, I had to follow the work. I was originally planning to fly to San Francisco for the summer, but not this year.
Speaking of work, I have always had plenty of ideas for the blog, not only how to entertain you in a variety of unique ways, but also help expand my audience base. I’m going to be making stickers and business cards this summer and leaving them around town. If you find one, take a picture and tag me on instagram (@fin.louie), twitter (@offbeatonpoint), or facebook (offbeat on-point page) and who knows? I might send you stickers or other swag.
Branching Out into Podcasts/Youtube
I’m planning to make a podcast radio show either in tandem with Rewind Wednesday or in addition to it, either way I won’t entirely drop Wednesday. Also I’d like to get some interviews on skype or something to upload for youtube, like for a band, or a local artist, or what have you. Speaking of youtube, I’ve been thinking about trying to make a Fin & Louie animated short. I have never done animation before but then again I haven’t done a lot of the things I’m doing before.