Awkward lunch

There’s this new restaurant in the neighborhood, it’s a casual place. You walk up to the counter and order and they bring it to your table. It’s a sort of Asian bowl place, but you can get many things there, they have a large menu.

Well, it’s always empty. I’m usually the only one there when I stop in for lunch. There are maybe four or five employees behind the counter and some preparing the food in the kitchen and my $12 lunch probably doesn’t cover one of their salaries for the day.

babu

They have a few locations in Miami and I don’t know if they are a large chain around the county or just have the few locations here. The food is great at a great price, but no one is going. I’ve told so many people about it, too.

It used to be a Quizno’s and that place was always full, so it’s not about the location.

It reminds me of that Babu, cafe episode of Seinfeld.

As you enter, before you are even in the door, they are greeting you from the front counter, I guess they are so happy to see a person arrive. Then when your food is being prepared, you don’t know where to look, they all just stand and stare at you and when you look at them, they smile. Very weird.

I do hope they make it. I like the food very much and it’s a great place for lunch.

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Black t-shirt insecurities

tom-falcoI normally dress in a t-shirt and jeans, unless I’m going to a meeting or wedding or something a bit fancier than just every day stuff.

And that is how I want to dress daily – black t-shirt and jeans. Didn’t Steve Jobs dress like that? I think he did it because it was easy to just wear the same thing and not think about what you wear, although when you wear jeans and a t-shirt every day like I do, there really isn’t much to think about – green, red, black?

I like the black.

The only reason I don’t do it is because I don’t want people thinking I’m wearing the same shirt every day, even though I have so many black t-shirts and they are fresh when I put them on. I’m not sure why I care, all they have to do is sniff me to see the shirt is clean.

I literally have my finger on an Amazon order now, ready to hit “send” for a package of black t-shirts, but the thought of being seen as dirty is stopping me. The ironic part is that I wash my hands 20 times a day. I’m not neurotic, it isn’t that. I just do it when I enter the house or when I throw out the trash or before I eat, you know, things like that.

I do love my Batman/Starry Night shirt, so I’ll wear that once in awhile and I have plenty of other t-shirts that I like. When I go out to dinner or meetings, etc., I wear a dress shirt. But I like the black t-shirt and jeans look as my every day uniform. What do you think?

It’s funny, after I wrote this post I came upon this story on the CBS website called, “Should you wear a work uniform?” referring to wearing the same thing every day. It’s a growing trend where people voluntarily wear the same thing every day! The lady in the CBS piece says she was exhausted every day trying to figure out what to wear, I don’t feel like that I just feel like wearing the same thing because I like the look. No other reason.

Rejection

Michael Maslin has an excellent article in his blog about constant cartoon rejections. He shows an image which is a foot high of his rejected cartoons.

I sometimes equate cartoonists with actors. Actors have that cattle call lifestyle where they go from audition to audition and rejection to rejection and it’s hard not to take it personally.

So much of it has to do with personality I believe. You may remind the person making the decisions of someone they don’t like and you are in their gun sites forever for that reason. It may have nothing to do with your work.

But of course most of it is just too much competition. Too many people out there do the same thing and it’s easy to put others down. Art is subjective, so I may not like someone’s drawing style, but that doesn’t make it bad and I may not understand a comic gag line, but others do, so that doesn’t make it bad.

There was a time when I sold a lot of my work simply by submitting it. I would sell cartoons to magazines, books and newspapers. I was part of King Features’ “New Breed” concept, where they published various cartoonists in the newspapers, grooming us for better things to come. I stopped after a bit to start a business and have always regretted that.

I would send them maybe 20 comic panels and they would purchase maybe five of that lot. Not bad. I would sell a lot to magazines, too. They would buy what I sent them.

The good part about the internet and social media is that you can do your own thing and build your own audience. If you have good content, it’s not that hard to build an audience; making a living at it is another story.

Patience; patience in adversity

Guess the pink moon is not working in my favor. I reached out to three people this week for 10 With Tom interviews and was blown off by all three. Well, one never answered me. The other two told me they weren’t ready, one asked me to wait a few weeks and one asked me to wait six months!

The problem is they are hot now and in a few weeks or months the bloom will be off the rose. I’m feeling a bit dejected.

On a happy note, one of my favorite blogs, The Daily Cartoonist is back in action, having been on hiatus for almost two hears. In fact, tomorrow, May 2, will be exactly two years since Alan Gardner put the blog on hold. Now Andrews McMeel/GoComics owns it and has started it up again under the aegis of John Glynn the main man at GoComics and comic junkie D.D. Degg will be running daily operations and providing most of the posts.

On the first day cartoonists were popping up out of the woodwork. It’s amazing how much the blog is loved. It really covers the comics industry excellently. It’s mostly aggregating stories about comics and cartooning, but it’s the one stop shop for that info. I was thinking of hitting them up with some of my comic strip and cartoonist interviews that I do with 10 With Tom, you know, fresh content.

I’m still working on getting my Tomversation comics published at GoComics.com, too. It’s amazing to me that I’ve been published in books, magazines and newspapers for years, but I cannot break that bubble.

Patience. Patience in adversity.

tomversation

A comic I’m working on.

I finally cut the cord

phone

I finally pulled the plug on my house phone, the land line. I don’t know why I kept holding onto it, for 10 years or so I had it forwarded to my cell phone, so I never used the house phone. But boy, was it a bitch getting AT&T to release me. They gave me the run around. One guy refused to pass me onto the correct department until he looked at my account and tried to stick me with other services.

Then he passed me to another department and then they passed me to another and then I was on hold for a long time and then the lady who came on could barely be heard. It was some game they play in order to get you to give up. AT&T are bastards.

I finally went to the website and chatted with a guy and he did it within few seconds.

I then asked him about my very high cable and internet bill. He gave me a lower rate and gave me a faster internet speed, which I thought I was paying for all the while. I’m not sure why they just don’t give everyone the fastest internet, why would you not want that?

I want to learn what Sling and Hulu and all those anti-cable tv things are about so I can just tell the cable tv to take a hike.

It feels weird now not having a home land line, but like I said, I never used it anyway. It would just forward the calls all to my cell phone, which all were telemarketers anyway.

I also cancelled four websites I had with Earthlink. I had moved them long ago and was still paying for them. Earthlink is expensive and for almost 20 years I paid those rates!

They too tried to give me the run around. I kept trying to explain to the guy that one site was only $13 per year on WordPress, yet Earthlink charges me $45 per month. Why would I stay with them? My main biz site is now only $150 per year with a new provider, as opposed to their rate of $45 per month, which is $540 per year! At one time I had a lot of websites with them and I paid through the nose. I also had them return the $139 they charged me for SSL service which I never used. I got it free from my new web host.

Loyalty has its price. So does stupidity on my part. I’m glad I finally wizened up.

 

How do I raise my Uber rating?

uber

My Uber rating is 4.82, I’ve been trying to get it up to 5.0, which is was for a long time, but about a year ago it dropped and I don’t know why.

I don’t know why I care either, but I’m just wondering why it went down.

I always tip, I over-tip. But am I talking too much for one driver and not enough for another? Should I sit in the back seat or the front seat? Do I remind a driver of someone they don’t like? What is it?

I never check the driver’s ratings, I just hop in the car and we’re off and I suppose the drivers don’t really check most ratings of passengers, since it’s numbers game and I doubt they can be that picky.

One time a driver got mad because the address given on the system was next door to where I was. But for some reason, I couldn’t get it to put my exact address in. Now it uses a GPS that does it for you so you don’t have to punch in the address.

But he was upset. Not sure why, I was literally 10 feet away early on a Saturday morning, there was not another person on the street and there I was standing there, holding my luggage waving at him.

But I want that rating up to 5.0. Maybe I should offer them chewing gum and bottled water when I get into the car, rather than the other way around.

Maybe I’ll try Lyft. I think I have a few free rides coming with them.

I’m learning WordPress

code

I’ve been rebuilding my business website. Yes, while I would love to draw comics and write about art and comics all day long, I do have a real job.

I’m not very familiar with WordPress, although this blog is on the WordPress platform. But for the business site, I’m using WordPress.org, rather than WordPress. com (there is a difference).

What happened was, I am using an ancient program now called FrontPage 2003, which is obsolete, my web host, along with almost every other web host in the world will stop supporting the program, most have stopped already and mine is ending it all in May, so I’m scrambling to get the new site up and running.

I would prefer to pay someone, but I am willing to sit here for 12 hours to get something done while I know if I paid someone, that 12 hours would turn into weeks for them. I know from experience. So to get it done fast I am plugging away, literally with all the plugins I’m using.

I did spend one full day doing something only to realize that I could just copy and past a lot of the old site to the new site, which sort of wasted the previous day. Live and learn.

I do like learning new things. I was very proficient in HTML and this new way of doing websites is a lot of plugins and CSS, which I am learning. I must say, I have a very high regard for people who write code every day. I would jump out the window if I had to do this daily, it’s not for me. I prefer drawing and writing.

I’m excited to “go live” as they say. It’s the first reboot of the site in almost 20 years! Scary and exciting at the same time. When it’s done I’ll share it with you.