and now the happy stuff...
i enjoyed my trip with ken this weekend.
8^) it was so nice to finally get out of jonesboro for awhile!

we didn't spend as much time at the con as i woulda hope or as much as last time, but we had a great time regardless.
i got to met terry moore from Strangers in Paradise. i even got a sketchfrom him and got him to look over our art (ken's and mine.)!
he drew a cute sketch of Lizzie for Ken. it's perfect!
if you have no clue about Lizzie, go check out his Paradise, Too! books and start laughing.
Terry thought that there was hope for ken and i in comics, should that be the path we take.
for me i say it is.
Ken wants to go in video games and 3-D art as well as comics. 8^) we'll see which way he goes. he may find a way to do all of them. lol

i even got to met corey from LSR and B.J. and Joey from Jackie's Fridge and Tonja Steele. all in artist's alley. 8^) even got a jackie and fridge sketch from B.J.! it was great to see fellow webtoonists there. so, of course, i bought some of their wares, to help 'em out and all. that and i really wanted the stuff.

ken and i went by an art store and got lots of supplies-sketchbooks brush pens, etc.
and we bought a few more brush pens at the con: copic brush pens!
copic pens are used by manga pros.
i'm going to experiment and see how i like them, and maybe switch from the micron pigmas (maybe.)

i got some critiques on my work. (i need to work on my inking more.) so i'll be focusing some on that.
i also saw that the minneapolis college of art and design had a booth. and their masters in visual arts covers comic art! 8^D
happy me! now to do research. i may not be able to do the grad school thing for a long time yet.

we found a cool japanese/oriental grocery store! i think it might be some national chain in huge metro areas, it had that look to it.
huge store.
i enjoyed it! i felt a little self-conscious at first, since ken and i were the only caucasians in there for a bit, but relaxed when i saw a few more of them.
i got some stuff to doctor up my ramen with and new chopsticks and soup bases for udon noodles. i wish i could read the directions on the soup base, though. lol
i even got some more pocky! (almond crush, coconut and chocolate mousse! yum!)
ken found packets of mao pu tofu sauce. he got 6 packets. o.0 the boy loves his tofu. 8^)
they even had a little food court with oriental cuisine.
it's offical: i love shrimp tempura udon. yummy! i wish i had some for lunch today.
it was so funny to see the looks on the food court worker's faces when ken orders the mao pu tofu. lol
they can't believe that someone who isn't asian would order it!
after it was over, that afternoon, i wished i could've gone back the next day.

sadly, though, we discovers that his favorite chinese place, Ming's, which made the best mao pu tofu, closed. it's now sizzle india. 8^(
but giordano's was still open. best pizza in chi-town. forget pizzeria uno or gino's east!
plus, it wasn't a trip to chicago without greasy but good gyros, portillo's italian beef sandwiches, or some fresh bagels for breakfast in the mornings. yum!
i think i have the most fun on trips finding places to eat.

it was a long drive home last night and i was glad to get home and get a little sleep before work this morning.
i could still use a little sleep, though.
i'm glad took Ken took an extra day off. i get to see him a little this evening. 8^)
sleepy, but i still want a bowl of tempura udon!
about to burst
i never know why i can't cry until the dam just breaks.
things aren't all bad...i had a good time at wizard world chicago (more on that later,) but this mess with my parents and my older brother, carter, is just not helping me at all.
it make me just as upset as a couple of years ago, when mom and dad, after 18 or so years of divorce, finally start acting like a newly divorced couple and fight over that old house in Weiner.
and they are still sore at each other because of that... 9.9

carter got a job where i work on the night crew.
one of his fellow employees chaving creams his truck. several nights later that same employee makes a prank call on carter at work. if there are other incidents, i do not know of them.
carter's never been the thick skinned type. he takes stuff like this personally. i know what that's like. i still have trouble with some people figuring out whether they are serious or kidding. people always seem to think that i'm so serious, and that when i do play around, they don't realize i'm joking.
carter has it worse, part of him still has growing up to do.
oh, he has me beat at being responsible, saving money, paying bills on time and not getting a checking account overdrawn,
but where are friends? i don't think he has any, which is sad.
i don't think he makes friends easily or well. always telling jokes so he will be liked.
it is like he is trying to hard to make friends, which we all know if what drives most of them away.

this morning, carter came in and turn in his i.d. badge.
he officially is out of work once more.
he could do so well in a white collar job, but thinks he can't do the school work. that's bull, i say. he's smart enough, regardless of where he went to school or the gaps that mioght be in his education. i mean, look at me. i went to the same school, graduated and went to college. i have a B.F.A. now. and i'm lousy at math (mind, most art majors don't require much math, but still...) i took remedial courses to catch up. i took intermediate algebra at least 3 times before i passed it.
if i can do it, so can he.
but he never thinks he can...

another thing is that he doesn't really know what he wants to do, at least, that's what i always get from him.
you ask, what do you really want to do in life and you'll get an "i don't know," and a shrug.
i don't want my brother to go through life like this and discover at 70 want he wants to do only to find that he is now too old to persue it.

i don't think dad is helping the situation much, but what can anyone do?
i think he keeps carter form developing in a worldly sense. i don't think it's intentional, though.
i'm afraid for my brother. i know something isn't quite right with him. he's not nuts, far from it, but he doesn't quite fit in...
and his taking things way too serious, i'm afraid one day he will snap.
what sill he do?
maybe just rant and rave.
maybe he'll hit someone.
maybe something worse.
or maybe he'll do nothing at all.

my brother needs to develop a thick skin and go see the world.
just telling someone to "get a life," is one thing, but doing it is quite another.
i'm worried...very worried.
i can tell him what i think, but whether he'll take my advice and do it, is quite another. i can't force him to do anything, and i wouldn't want to.

he saw that fedex was hiring part-time.
all i hope is that things stablize out, that he will get a good job.

at least typing it out here makes me feel marginally better. but only just.