The End Is Near (Year-wise)

As The Logs Burn

This December has been different from its predecessors. For the first time in my adult life I’m living in a house with a working fireplace. This has made the month’s stretch of holidays a pleasantly toasty experience for Eddie, Lulu, and me.

Hopefully yours have been similarly warm and toasty in spirit, whether or not actual flames were involved.


It’s bearing down on us. Expect saturation coverage by CNN.

Christmas Morning 1950

That was the year when Santa brought my brother and me our first bicycles (see above).

Quality Time With Steven

An enjoyable chunk of my holiday season was spent reading Rainy Day Recess, the new collection from Northwest Press of David Kelly‘s engrossing comic strip series from the 1990s.

If you never had the experience of being a gay kid navigating less than felicitous school and family terrains during an era when the straight world hadn’t yet come to grips with the fact that gay kids actually existed, here’s your chance to learn what that was like — for one kid, at least.

If the foregoing describes the kind of life you yourself led in early adolescence, then here’s your chance to indulge in a bittersweet feast of nostalgia.

The Importance of Being "Important"

Above right: Sean poses with his trusty tripod after inducing me to talk at more length about myself than most people would consider acceptable for a modest Alabama boy. The inset images are frames from his documentary.


The weeks leading up to Eddie and my move to Williamstown were made livelier by my friend and former tenant Sean Wheeler. Sean had spent time as a radio broadcaster in the Pacific Northwest before moving to North Adams, where he enrolled in MCLA‘s communications program with the goal of shifting from radio to television. He also rented the apartment above Eddie’s and my Cliff Street digs temporarily before deciding it made sense for him to move closer to the MCLA campus.

Following his graduation from the college earlier this year Sean snagged an internship at Willinet, Williamstown’s community TV station. Prodded by his supervisor to have a go at producing a mini-documentary about some interesting local personality, Sean asked me if I would be willing to be profiled for his project.

I said I was game, so Sean hauled his camcorder and microphone over to my Cliff Street studio and began quizzing me for posterity about my life history. Weeks of editing followed during which Eddie and I busied ourselves with our move. We had barely settled in when Sean phoned to report that his 28-minute documentary was now finished.

Besides airing Sean’s video handiwork a few times already, Willinet and has posted it online in its entirety for all the world to see. It’s called, appropriately enough, "I Must Be Important ‘Cause I’m in a Documentary!!" As its title indicates, I’m perpetually in need of reassurance.

Into the Sunset?

Traffic’s been slow at my "Cruse Goodies" online merchandise shop, and in a week or so I’ve gotta decide whether to pay the cost of maintaining it for another year. So if you’ve ever thought of enriching your life with mugs, t-shirts, mouse pads, clocks, or other stuff decorated with my cartoons, you may want to take action soon, since the opportunity to purchase them may soon vanish into the mists like Lerner and Loewe’s Brigadoon.

Hey, here are books of mine that you can buy!
Click a cover below to learn about my self-published gems.
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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, Books in my Bookcase, Family & Friends, Home Life, Life & Art, Me, Me, Me!, Yesterday & Today. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to The End Is Near (Year-wise)

  1. Martha Thomases says:

    If you need a testimonial, I’m here to say how much I lice my authentic Howard Cruse coffee mugs. Don’t start your day without one!