Saturday, 31 October 2015

Jeff Seiler: Dave Sim & Me

Eleven years ago, when Cerebus ended, Dave Sim decided to answer all of his back mail. A month or so later, he had his "Jeff Seiler Day" in which he answered multiple letters I had written over the previous year. After I received that letter, I decided to keep writing, and he kept his promise to answer every letter he received. And now, I have a foot-high stack of letters written and received over 10 years or so. I will be posting full paragraphs or pages of interesting excerpts from those letters every Saturday.

This week, a letter from Dave Sim to me, dated 15 July 2004, in response to my letter of 3 July 2004:

Dear Jeff:

Thanks for your letter of July 3. Glad to hear that you liked the Yahoo Newsgroup a little better on second reading. I have certainly heard that they get into some interesting discussions and I’ve heard that the intelligence level is quite a bit higher than the Internet average, both very gratifying to as both (largely tangential) object and non-participant.

Selling energy savings door-to-door in Texas heat (make that Heat) should certainly test your stamina and determination. That’s exactly the sort of thing I meant in one of recent letters to you about REAL jobs and the urge I have to get one from time-to-time. Believing as I do that everything comes from God, I would put this one in the “prove yourself” category. If you can maintain a good disposition and optimism through that, then you will definitely have proved something and will be ready for the next round--whatever that might be.

Yes, I did enjoy my vacation in Italy, as I mentioned in my letter which you haven’t gotten yet. Very funny, you wondering how a Canadian and an ex-pat Brit would celebrate the Fourth of July and then catching yourself at it. Actually, I did think quite a bit about the Fourth of July, it being a Sunday. There was the possibility of bypassing my usual Sabbath procedure of complete isolation, reading scripture aloud and fasting (hey, God, I’m on VACATION here--my first vacation since 2000) in favour of just another day off in the Portorecanati sun. It occurred to me that either one would constitute an Independence Day--Independence from God or Independence from the beach and the Beaches. Chose the latter. Got through seventeen chapters of Leviticus, all of John’s Gospels, and sura IV “Women” (which is a long one). As Billy rather drily remarked when I staggered downstairs, “I expect you’re a bit peckish.”

“Yeah, I could eat something.”

Second-longest fast of the year this time of the year, early July, 5 a.m. to 10 p.m. Fortunately, Francesca had made a lasagna earlier, which went down nicely.

Spoke to Keith on the phone yesterday and it looks as if we’re all on the same page. He was very complimentary about you by the way, how polite and reasonable you were. I expect those might not be common traits in your average Cerebus fan, from the way he said it. We’ll be sending out some books from the warehouse that he can use to hand-sell Bi-Weekly #17 for his Conan subscribers and Cerebus 264 for the SandFans. We have some other things on the go and, last week, Diamond ordered over 400 copies of the Cerebus trade, so it seems as if something is up, however temporarily. We’ll also send him some Self-Publishing Guides.

To be honest, I don’t know if the local Conservative won. By the time I got back [from Italy] it was old news. I plan on going down to Karen Redman’s constituency office in a few days to see if there are cardboard boxes stacked up all over the place. I suspect not. Ontario has given itself a bad case of whiplash scrambling back to the Marxist-Feminist side of the fence in the last few days of the campaign. Kitchener is so Liberal, we have a metaphorical slipped disc from the same process. I had trouble believing that the Conservatives were actually going to win it--Marxist-Feminists just don’t change their hearts that fast. Harper actually did really well, compared to my mental image of Canada, and now the question is: how far from accurate is my mental image of Canada? I suspect it isn’t and a minority government with the Stalin NDP should make that pretty obvious in short order. But the level of denial in Marxist-Feminists is prodigious. After all, these people believe abortion is a virtue, the Kyoto Accord is based on actual science, men and women are interchangeable and gay marriage constitutes a giant leap forward for human freedom. Not to mention the sixteen Impossible Things To Believe Before Breakfast. Voting for self-evidently corrupt politicians is a snap, compared to the big items on the menu. Martin has already delayed recalling Parliament until October. Calls a snap election because we have all these big emergencies he needs a mandate for and now that he’s elected he pushes recalling Parliament back a month. Makes sense to me, Clarabelle, what about you? MOOOOOOO.

Thanks again, as always, for writing.



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