Moving Days

I’ve been pre-occupied of late by the relocation of my web site (this blog included) to a new server.

This is a process that I would be totally unable to undertake on my own, since the geek gene so prevalent in today’s youth is nowhere to be found in any of my own DNA strands. Fortunately, I’ve been assisted in the move by Jason Bergman, who has been hosting my site free of charge within his own expansive Loonygames domain for the last dozen years out of the goodness of his heart.

Jason, a one-time student of mine at the School of Visual Arts in New York, himself has geek genes up to his eyeballs, which has been hugely handy for me. Jason has been my cheerleader, digital troubleshooter, and general web enabler for all this time, for which I will be eternally grateful.

But Jason is in the process of reconfiguring his own Internet activities right now, which makes this a logical time for me to venture forth from the security of his digital nest. Time will tell how successfully I can fly on my own, but he’s doing his best to help me make the transition smoothly as Howard Cruse Central is deposited in its entirety onto a new server, Dreamhost.com.

As I understand it, if all goes as planned nothing about the way my main site’s appearance to visitors like you will change as a result of the move. I’m only mentioning this move at all because you will notice some differences in the look of my blog, the most obvious ones being its revised title graphic and its general page layout.

Below: My site’s "old look" alongside the "new look."

Also, there’s tinkering yet to be done with the blog’s text, since in the new environment my web-authoring program, Adobe Dreamweaver, hasn’t been playing as well as I might wish with my blog publisher, WordPress. Until I figure out how to inject a little of the old discipline into their relationship, the type fonts I choose here at home may not be the type fonts and sizes you see on your computer.

Not to worry; we’re working on it. Meanwhile, anything you notice me doing correctly in the Web world from this point onward will be a result of the patient mentoring I’ve been receiving from Jason since he took my site under his wing back in 1998.

Another Moving Day

As I’ve mentioned in past blog entries, Main Street Stage, the North Adams community theatre whose Board of Directors my husband Eddie now chairs, has been forced to vacate the space it has been occupying for the last twelve years.

Ideally the troupe will be able to put down new roots soon in what will potentially be an even better space for putting on plays. That can’t happen instantly, though, since funds will need to be raised to cover the renovation costs. For the time being, therefore, all of the equipment, tools, and props from past productions have had to be cleared out of the old quarters and stored in a space that, while relatively nearby, is not exactly next door.

Moving from one house to another is burdensome enough, as anyone who has been through that exhausting drudgery will attest. So you can imagine how hard it is to spend a couple of weekends lugging the complicated guts of a theatre from one part of town to another.

So my hat’s off to the noble Main Street Stage volunteers who selflessly undertook that task, only a few of whom happened to fall within camera range when I took the photos below.

Above: Props and tchotchkes unlikely to be needed for future productions were offered to Main Street passers-by at bargain prices.
Above: Christopher Thomas and Martin Fillion pause to pose for me while emptying the stage area.
Above: Eddie sorts candidates for the day’s many garbage bags.

Above: Here come Martin and Chris again, hauling leftover up the stairs.

Above: Little left in the theatre’s formerly overflowing prop storage room other than the odd gravestone, chair, and mailing tube, and they’ll be gone soon.

Above: Jessie Wright organizes old prop glassware.

Help Main Street Stage Raise Money
(although personal contributions
will also be appreciated.

You don’t need to be from North Adams to help our local community theatre with the renovation cost of making our new space a good place to put on plays. It won’t cost you a penny to raise our chances of winning a thousand-dollar grant from the Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation; you just have to help us get more votes than the competing non-profits. (Personally I hate asking worthy non-profits to compete with each other, but Main Street Stage is close to my heart so I’ll do what I have to do.)

Just click on the link above to get to the BTCF Facebook page and follow the rules closely so your vote for us will count. And you have to register your vote by this Friday, July 1!

P.S.: Iif you’re reading this from so far away that the merits of supporting some small community theatre in Massachusetts seems remote, let’s put it more personal terms. Pretend you’ll be helping Wendel Trupstock’s lover Ollie Chalmers fulfill his passionate need to be onstage and possibly be discovered by Mike Nichols or some such luminary.

BazookaJoeGuy Revealed

Remember how I was kicking myself a couple of blog entries ago for not being able to fully identify the fellow at Northampton’s Paint & Pixel Festival in April who showed me his tattooed rendition of Bazooka Joe as I used to draw him in the 1980s? (I had asked Eddie to photograph the tattoo itself but forgot to make sure we wrote down the bearer’s name and had a shot with the fellow’s full face in the frame.)

Well, my tattooed friend saw the blog post in question and helped out by sending me a superior image of the three of us (me, him, and Bazooka Joe) that his own camera had captured.

His name is Jotham Stavely and he’s an aspiring cartoonist himself, as evidenced by "Dave the Hipster Robot" (see below), which he’s given me permission to share with you even though, he cautions, "it’s only a draft" that still needs "some digital editing."

Draft or not, I find funny.

©2011 by Jotham Stavely

On The Book-Promotion Beat

By virtue of The Complete Wendel‘s publication this spring, I was invited to make a return visit to Frank DeCaro’s program on SiriusXM satellite radio last week (see above).

While in New York I was also invited to perform some selections from my Wendel collection at a benefit for Housing Works, a non-profit agency established in 1990 to combat homelessness and AIDS.

Above: 75 chairs were filled by a welcoming audience at the House Works Bookstore Cafe.

Below: Others who read from their books at the same benefit were Steven Haas (at left, author of George Platt Lynes: The Male Nudes) and David Pratt, author of Bob the Book).

Howard Cruse: The Podcast

A roughly hour-long conversation between my fellow cartoonist Mike Dawson and myself awaits the attention of anyone who has spans of time like that to spare and who enjoys hearing me gab about my stuff.

It’s one of Mike’s series of podcast interviews called TCJ Talkies, recorded for the Comics Journal web site.

Other comics creators interviewed by Mike so far are Evan Dorkin, Josh Cotter, Jessica Abel, and a group of graduates from the Center For Cartoon Studies in White River Junction, VT.

Meanwhile, at
Comic Book Resources…

…you’ll find Alex Dueben‘s wide-ranging and thoughtful interview with me, in which he asks, among other things, howcum I’m not publishing comics as frequently as I once did.

Hey, Number Two of Three is Out!!

My copy of the second issue of cartoonist Rob Kirby‘s Three arrived in the mail last week. What the inventive creator of Curbside is fostering is a series of anthology comics in which three queer-themed stories by three different queer comics creators (or teams of comics creators) will be featured in each edition. Rob himself was one of the three contributors in issue #1, but in issue #2 he has turned over the magazine’s pages to others.

The cover art this time around is by Michael Fahy, who teams up with Jennifer Camper inside the book on a jam story called "Help Wanted." (That’s a Camper panel from their jam shown next to the cover shot above.) Jon Macy provides steamy illustrations for a story by Sina Evil (also known as mild-mannered British punk ‘tooner Sina Shamsivari) called "Dragon"; and Craig Bostick collaborates with David Kelly in a story called "Nothing But Trouble." Nick Leonard and Craig Bostick also contribute bonus drawings.

The sex scenes in Three can be pretty forthright, I should add (which does not mean pornographic) — meaning that this series is for the bold, not the timid.

Hey, here’s stuff of mine that you can buy!
Click a cover below to learn about my latest books.
…and click here to visit my
Cruse Goodies merchandise shop

A Note to Those Who Enjoy This Blog: Given how irregularly I manage to add entries, you may wish to send me email asking to subscribe to my "Blog Alert" list. That way you’ll be among the first to get notified by email whenever I add a new blog post.

About Howard

I'm a cartoonist and writer, best known for my graphic novel, Stuck Rubber Baby, and my comic strip from the 1980s, Wendel.
This entry was posted in A Tip o' the Hat, Family & Friends, Life & Art, Me, Me, Me!, Soapbox Break. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Moving Days

  1. The new website looks spiffy, Howard. Nice work (and nice coaching).