Thursday, 10 March 2016


I checked the CEREBUS trade this morning and I'm pretty sure the pages that I pencilled on acid were pages 235 through 240.  They're VERY good pages but, as I said yesterday, I don't know how much of that to attribute to the drug.  (Ditto) six tight pencilled pages is pretty productive, but I don't know how much of that to attribute to the drug.

As you will see in the Weekly Update scheduled for tomorrow, I intended to do an exhaustive series of clips of ALL the scanning that needs to be done.  Didn't get around to the correspondence boxes out back at Camp David OR the glamourpuss pages OR the STRANGE DEATH OF ALEX RAYMOND possible inclusion pages, SDOAR definitely included so far and SDOAR definitely rejected pages.  Which is another HEAP of scanning.

We're gradually moving to a situation where one of our priorities is going to be to create Virtual Cerebus Archives:  in the sense that, as an example, all of the original Notebooks are stored in the Cerebus Archive but Margaret has copies of all of them.

I'm REALLY not big on any university-based archiving -- which is where most comic art archives are located -- but I know that many, if not most of you, don't share my concerns.  It seems to me that Virtual Archives is a solution to that.  If we can come up with a reasonable timeline for scanning EVERYTHING and offer the various components of the Archive in digital form to Seriously Completist CEREBUS Collectors, that would allow THEM to donate THEIR Virtual Archive to the institution of their choice.

The Notebooks is probably where we would start with that since a) they're already scanned, b) they're probably of higher-than-average-interest to serious Completists and c)  they're already in one place.

Variables that need to be considered:  what is a "comfort level schedule" for Completists to pay for/take delivery of the scanning involved?  What's a reasonable price (that would help finance the scanning without being onerous)?  What's a reasonable launch point?

If we DO start with the Notebooks, then, theoretically Margaret could handle it (especially since virtually all of the interest will be in the U.S.) in her -- ha-ha -- spare time.

Anyway scanning is definitely "front-burner" for the foreseeable future.  And the soon-to-be-launched Sandeep's Project is a first step in that direction.

Erick!  I can see your message that you replied to the 15 IMPOSSIBLE THINGS but I don't see the reply itself.  

Because of time constraints I really don't go back and check ANY of the thread comments unless Jeff S gives me a phone message that he thinks there's something I need to address.  My best advice, if there's something you want me to read is to post it in TODAY's comments, whatever TODAY is, which, theoretically I'll see TOMORROW unless TOMORROW is Sunday.

Or, possibly, Tim W could post it and I could answer in the comments section of that post.

I know Damian wants to colour it differently, but I think I'm a fair-minded individual and I do believe in pluralism but I also do believe that the 15 Things are as Impossible today as they were when I wrote them 14 years ago.

I doubt we're going to change each other's minds.  


Jack said...

Hi, Dave. Here's a comment I posted right above Erick's:

You say that it’s wrong to call you a misogynist because you’re merely anti-feminist, and anti-feminism is a completely different position from misogyny. Calling you a misogynist, you’ve said, is like saying that you hate workers because you're not a communist.

But Dave, you’ve also said that women are obviously inferior beings who have no morals and shouldn’t be allowed to vote. If you said that workers are obviously inferior beings who have no morals and shouldn’t be allowed to vote, would it really be that much of a stretch to assume that you hate workers? I mean, if I said that Jews are obviously inferior beings who have no morals and shouldn’t be allowed to vote, I don’t think you’d object to accusing me of "Judenhass." Similarly, if a feminist said that men are obviously inferior beings who have no morals and shouldn’t be allowed to vote, I don't think you'd hesitate to call her a misandrist. And if Gary Groth wrote an editorial titled, “Dave Sim Is an Obviously Inferior Being Who Has No Morals and Shouldn’t be Allowed to Vote,” I don't think you'd be willing to sign a petition saying, “I don’t believe that Gary Groth hates Dave Sim.”

Okay, that's it. I hope your wrist gets better soon. Good luck with the Raymond book.

A Moment Of Cerebus said...

Hi Erick,
If this works for you, I can grab the text and post it at the weekend so Dave can see it on Monday.
You'll be the first person in four and half years of AMOC who has replied to this.
That's note worthy!

Damian T. Lloyd, Esq. said...

I think "Digital Archives" are an excellent idea, especially if it's backed up in multiple locations. Sandeep accidentally burning up the Cerebus negatives should warn us how vulnerable any artefact is to disaster. I infer that Dave isn't conceiving this as a publically-available online archive, but I suggest that such would be a more valuable tool for future Cerebus readers and scholars, should there be any, than his "Museum of Me" in a small city in Ontario.

Regarding his last couple of paragraphs: I wouldn't attempt to change Dave's mind, which is hermetically sealed by now. I don't think Dave is (deliberately) unfair, I don't think he's stupid, and I don't think he's crazy. I do think his critical-thinking skills are sub-par; he doesn't know how to think, and he doesn't see why that's important. And, I mean, that's fine; not everybody's a Great Thinker. Dave's not a Great Thinker -- but he just might be a Great Cartoonist, and if he is remembered years hence that is what he will be remembered for.

I'm interested in seeing Dave try to defend his "Impossible Things" -- but if that comes at the expense of further work on Strange Death, then I know which course of action I would rather see him spend his time and energy on.

-- Damian

Damian T. Lloyd, Esq. said...

Oh, and for what it's worth, I think I pretty definitively, albeit accidentally, debunked Impossible Thing #3 in a comment on the March 7 post. (Whadd'a ya know? I'm a better thinker accidentally than Dave Sim is on purpose.)

-- Damian

Erick said...

A Moment Of Cerebus,
I am fine with that.


Eddie said...

"Sandeep accidentally burning up the Cerebus negatives should warn us how vulnerable any artefact is to disaster."

Just for the record, (in case someone is reading this or using it for research purposes some time in the future), my understanding was that the negatives were in Sandeep's possession when his whole building caught on fire, with him narrowly getting out in time while everything he owned went up in flames (along with the rest of the building). I've never come across anything claiming him being responsible for the negatives going up in the smoke (or the whole building, for that matter).

Bill Ritter said...

Eddie, well put.

Damian, for a (even if tongue-n-cheekily) claim of "Whadd'a ya know? I'm a better thinker accidentally..." I'd think you'd be more thoughtful of your word choice(s).

Or at least, be more thoughtful rather than thoughtless.

Erick said...

do you need me to re-post it here or will you pick it up from the D&S thread?

regarding Dave being a great thinker. I disagree with a lot of his views, but it in undeniable that the way he melded incisive political insight with wit and knee slapping humor took a great deal of intelligence. It is the reason why we celebrate Cerebus to this day, or I should say, it is my reason

Anthony Kuchar said...

Damian, I think your being unfair and misleading about the accident with the negatives. I'm glad that Eddie set the record straight.

Glen said...

A couple of years ago I wrote to Dave suggesting he donate his archives to the two universities in Kitchener, the University of Waterloo or Wilfred Laurier when he passes away. Both are great institutions. I still wish he would change his mind. Much of the work mentioned in the Cerebus Update above would be done by the archivists. And it would be publicly accessible to anyone who wants to study and research the works of Dave Sim and Gerhard especially young people. I don't believe an archive in his house would allow that.
An online Cerebus archive is also a great idea when both Dave Sim and Gerhard have passed. But then who would keep the archive going decades into the future? Those universities I mentioned will likely still be around.

iestyn said...

I'm thinking Damian may be talking about logical thinking as in 'scientific rigor'.

Dave is intelligent. Intelligence is a separate faculty from being a thinker. Both are separate from observation, which again is separate from communication.

It is rare to find someone able in all of these areas and frequently great intelligence is separate from being a great thinker, many intelligent people are more intuitive than they are logical thinkers.

That's those 'great leaps of the imagination' or 'eureka' moments. Subconscious, non-logical leaps to connect matters previously not considered together. I think Dave is certainly an intuitive and intelligent individual with incredible skills of observation.

Then again, I could be wrong about what Damian means.

Dominick Grace said...

RE: archives. I thought that at one point the idea WAS to house them somewhere such as a university. I definitely wrote a letter intended to be used in support of an attempt to convince such a body to take the archives. Maybe that fell through, maybe Dave changed his mind, I don't know, but there was, at some time in the not-too-distant past, some sort of consideration of such an archive.

Dave Sim said...

Well, let me be clear that it's not a matter of women are inferior beings. If you want to gestate a baby, you're going to need a woman for that. Women have general aptitudes that are female in character. The younger the child the better equipped they are than any man -- by nature -- to provide the best care for that child. They are community people. Whatever community you have, particularly in the "less than a few dozen" size community, the better women are going to be at "greasing the social wheels" than men. They are much better with "family stuff". My own theory is that they are hardwired to see Reality through a "family lens" and their community abilities extrapolate from that. Who they are, TO them, is who they are related to and how they are related to them. That mental roadmap is the template by which a woman views Reality. So it makes their Reality different from men's Reality.

And it isn't a matter of women shouldn't be allowed to vote. There are consequences of having women vote and I think we're seeing those results now: inside of a century you will be living in a Feminist Theocracy with a list of "elephants in the room" as long as your arm so you can't really discuss ANYTHING in any meaningful sense of the term "discuss" as I understand it.

But in a democracy anyone can vote who has campaigned to be granted the franchise and attained to it. In a democracy, you can allow cats to vote if you can muster enough support for it. That sounds far-fetched but so did allowing women to vote 200 years ago. I think we're inevitably going to see cats -- but not dogs -- voting sometime in the next century.

I think the Feminist Theocracy is a) an inevitable result of women getting the vote and b) structurally unsound (because of the 15 Impossible Things).

Dave Sim said...

Dominick - Yes, that was the Hail Mary Pass time period where I was concerned that CEREBUS' life and mine were going to be roughly coterminous. And thank you to everyone who wrote those letters which are still in one folder in Drawer 6. Since CEREBUS had then -- and has today -- zero real world cachet I needed a place for the Archive to go after both Ger and were dead. I don't think it would ever have happened -- and if it had, Wilfrid Laurier's security in their Archive storage was abysmal -- but when the final seconds are ticking off and you're on your own 20-yard line and down by four points. HAIL MARY!

(Ger leaving in 2006 put paid to that STRUCTURALLY. It made things easier in some ways and more difficult in other ways, but it pointed me in the direction I've been SLOWLY going ever since. Whatever happened it would be after I died. Gerhard dying wouldn't and won't have any effect on how everything unfolded/unfolds).

Overall, I think university campuses are becoming Feminist Theocracy "Temples". Those quotation marks are becoming unnecessary. Exactly the thing that makes the Feminist Theocracy untenable -- the idea that there is "one right way to think and what we are doing as a society is determining what that is" (with it's ancillary poison of eliminating, sequestering, suppressing, etc. any way of thinking that isn't "Feminist Theocratical"). Wilfrid Laurier is far worse in that sense than is Waterloo, but both are equally bad and, in political terms, particularly relative to a work like CEREBUS, getting worse.

MY decisions, what I put in my place has to take into consideration not just where we are NOW as a society but where I think we're going. Universities are worse than society in general when it comes to pluralism, so, extrapolating a hundred or two hundred years into the future I think it's safe to assume that that erosion of things like a basic grasp of pluralism is going to go downhill. All the way downhill into general fascism, in a hurry, slowly, slowly then quickly, rock bottom and then back to some semblance of Freedom of Speech being the only question marks. With little or no discussion because that's "elephant in the room". You want to keep your tenure? Don't buck the Feminist Theocracy.

And there are no "do overs" for me after I'm dead.

I understand YOUR giving universities the benefit of the doubt: YOU'RE a feminist. And, like all feminists, I don't think you see Reality clearly. You don't see what feminism is and where it's taken us and where it's taking us. That's fine. Democracy is about individual choice based on individual assessment. Call 'em as you see 'em.

But you don't have sole custodial responsibility for a 6,000-page graphic novel that the Feminist Theocracy really, really, really, REALLY doesn't like. I do. Wishful thinking has no place in my decision-making. I have to see -- and extrapolate -- future reality with all the crystal clarity I can bring to bear on it.

Keeping CEREBUS away from universities is a no-brainer in that context.

Jack said...

Dave, I think you're changing the subject with your discussion of women's family-centered nature and the growing threat of feline voting rights.

I'll restate the point that I was trying to make. In "Tangent," you wrote that women have "no ethics, no scruples, no sense of right and wrong." In Cerebus 293, you wrote that they're "inherently, self-evidently, inferior beings." In your Comics Journal reply to Allen Rubenstein, you wrote that they should be denied the vote. So you've written that women are obviously inferior beings who have no morals and shouldn't be allowed to vote. I think that's why you have a reputation as a misogynist. I don't think it's because people object to your non-feminist views on daycare, affirmative action, abortion, alimony, etc. and are trying to smear you.

But thanks for your reply.

Dave Sim said...

Damian - From what they told Sandeep "at the scene" if there was a Fire Marshall's report on the fire, it was not going to be publicly available. Of the known facts, it definitely didn't start in Sandeep's apartment because he was in the shower just before it happened and heard loud pounding on the door and when he came out, smoke was coming up through the floorboards and the empty variety store under his apartment was already engulfed in flames. There was a fish and chip joint next to that and you can just imagine what a place filled with deep fryers was going to be in the accelerant end of things. There was a garbage bin at the side of the building and it might have started there.

But, definitely, there is a pejorative tone to your description that is COMPLETELY inaccurate. No great surprise.

Dave Sim said...

Jack - If you're talking about masculine attributes, particularly in the sciences, tech, etc., women ARE inferior beings. But only if you think and are trying to prove the genders are interchangeable. You can create all of the Feminist Theocracy rationales that you want -- women are intimidated by the patriarchal dominance of sciences, tech, etc. -- it falls apart when you find out that Smith College, the venerable women's institution, has the same lousy enrolment rates as co-ed environments in those areas. Either women aren't good at it or they don't like it enough to get good at it or a combination of those two. I think it's the former. Evidence supports both viewpoints but only the Feminist Theocracy viewpoint is accepted: we have to FORCE women to dominate ALL university environments because anything else is patriarchal.

Harvard is now 65%-35% women to men ratio. Roughly the percentage when we decided we needed affirmative action to achieve balance. You see any sign of that? No. Why? Because we live in a Feminist Theocracy and only feminism is accredited. It's either feminism or misogyny.

That's "effed".

Thanks for posting. I've got to get back to he Off-White House and cut Sandeep his cheque for this week.

He should get hazard pay. :)

Dominick Grace said...

Just for the record, Dave, I would NOT describe myself as a feminist. And given your (legitimate) concern over people tarring you with the misogyny brush despite your own view of yourself as not misogynist (and I have signed the petition, by the way), I guess I'm a bit surprised you seem so casual about applying "feminist" to other people. As for universities as feminist temples, well, I can see where that perception comes from. On the other hand, I taught Jaka's Story at one without so much as a raised eyebrow from anyone about it, I have presented several conference papers on Cerebus (wearing my Cerebus t-shirt, even) at events entirely populated by academics without ever once having anyone raise even the slightest objection or concern about it (to be fair, every time I do so, I half-expect someone in the audience to ask an outraged question about how I can dare to discuss a work, but it has never even come close to happening), and I have published two academic papers on Cerebus, again, without anyone making any fuss about it at all. And I coedited the Conversations collection of interviews with you, again, without anyone at my institution raising any objection--and I even gave them advance warning that such a book could possibly be controversial (though I didn't think it would be). You might look at all that and still view me as a feminist, but that's your Reality, not mine.



al roney said...

I agree with Dom, calling/labeling someone as a "Feminist" when they are not, is no different than being called "Misogynist" when you are not.

Seriously. In the US the "ist" du jour is "Racist". Used to nullify anyone who has a beef with our current president, questions social programs (engineering) or anything else defiant of our socialistic (feminist?) bent.

It's abhorrent.

FWIW, I think gender differences should be discussed, argued and analyzed - albeit honestly. Issue 186 didn't repulse me at all - as a Free Speech Freak, it was necessary.

Softballs never drive a conversation, Fast Balls do and Dave was throwing heaters. Bravo!

Heck, Dave's insight into male/female relations had a tremendous impact on me as I was navigating my way through a painful (is there any other kind?) divorce and other relationships.

Those Cerebus letter pages should have their own TP series - or at least downloadable PDF's!

And having gone through a real-life Jaka's Story (men have ZERO say in abortion indeed) was a synchronicity that still haunts me?) to this day. As it turned out - she was most definitely NOT an/the exception. I had been fooling myself...

I digress.

In this forum where Dave is, mostly, among friends - or at least people who RESPECT his work - blasting them comes off as a wee bit self-destructive and, er, a tad emotional.

It weakens the argument.

FYI - Harvard's enrollment is actually 53-percent male vs. 47-percent female.

Sign me up for the archives, Go Fund Me, and CAN's 5 though whenever...

Jeff Seiler said...

For the record, Dave, I will stand in the front lines of any battle against giving felines the right to vote. The first casualty, should they obtain that right, would be spaying and neutering. Within a few years they would then have a majority in any vote.

I have a cat, as you know. If he were allowed to vote, there would two exactly two items on every ballot: "Every feline shall be allowed, legally, to consume the flesh and internal organs of their humans, particularly if said humans are deceased." and "All citizens shall have and exercise the God-given right to sleep for 20 hours per circadian cycle."

What sort of chaos would we have if they won those ballot initiatives?

And, you're right. Dogs should never, ever, under any circumstances, be allowed to vote. Well, maybe in the electoral college. Maybe.

Damian T. Lloyd, Esq. said...

Hmm. Yeah, Eddie, I think ya got me this time. I intended to convey that the negatives were "off-site" when they were destroyed, but upon review I think that a reasonable reader could come away with the idea that Sandeep bore some culpability for their destruction. I have zero respect for Sandeep; I think he is Dave's Max von Mayerling; I think his alleged defences of Dave do actual harm to Dave's and Cerebus's critical reputation. But I do not and have never thought that he is to blame for destroying the negatives, and I regret that I gave that impression. Sandeep, I apologize to you for that.

-- Damian

Damian T. Lloyd, Esq. said...

Jeff, I fear it would read "particularly, but not necessarily".

-- Damian

Barry Deutsch said...

I think Dave may have been kidding, but 200 years ago women voting was entirely comprehensible. Women were already voting in Sweden by the late 1700s, and single women in New Jersey could vote until 1807. (New Jersey, radical for its time, also allowed free blacks to vote. The voting rights of both women and blacks were rescinded in 1807, amid claims that illegitimate voters were voting in great numbers, similar to the voter ID controversies going on today.)

Also, as Al R. said, the majority of students at Harvard are male.

And as I mentioned in a previous thread, US colleges generally use affirmative action to admit more men, not to admit more women, as Dave seems to believe.

Glen said...


Franchising women is the same as allowing cats the right to vote?



Jeff Seiler said...

Damian, I think one of the intended cornerstones of this website was and is demonstrated mutual respect. To come right out and say you have "zero respect" for someone here, someone you've never even met in person (I assume, since you live at opposite ends of your country), is anathema to the ideals of this site. Can you not disagree with Sandeep and, yet, still respect him as a human being? And, no, I will not accept that you were engaging in hyperbole. That was a personal attack. And, the very act of apologizing to him for something, IN THE SAME POST, significantly reduces the sincerity of the "apology". "I have zero respect for you, but I apologize for that other thing."

You're losing it, Damian.

And, yes, not necessarily. My cat tries to take large chunks out of my left forearm on a daily basis. Fortunately, in the winter (10 months out of the year here in Minneapolis), I am relatively safe, due to long sleeves. But my hands always have scars. At night, he's a cuddle-bunny but during the day, should he become bored, look out!

Jeff Seiler said...

Strange synchronicity: Erich von Stroheim, who played Max von Mayerling (to whom, above, Damian compares Sandeep) in the brilliant Sunset Strip, was also in a much earlier, silent, movie named The Heart of Humanity. In that movie, he played a character who, among other reprehensible things he did, when a crying baby was annoying him, he threw it out the window.

I wonder whether Dave ever saw The Heart of Humanity?

Damian T. Lloyd, Esq. said...

I'm losing it, Jeff? Your reply to someone who says things you don't like is to call that person crazy? Seems I've read that argument before about someone else ... who was that again ..?

I don't respect Sandeep, and haven't seen him live up to "one of the intended cornerstones of this website [which] was and is demonstrated mutual respect." I season my arguments with a soupcon of snark, but if you remove the snark there's still an argument; if you remove the insults from Sandeep's comments here, you're looking at an awful lot of blank space. I think he's a bully.

Whatever I think of Sandeep, it is not fair to blame him for things he bears no responsibility for. I think a reasonable reader, reading my initial comment, could reasonably conclude that I was blaming Sandeep for allowing the negatives to burn up. I spoke poorly, and unjustly impugned Sandeep. I will be more careful in the future.

As to your cat, I regret that I have no suggestions. You're not using Steve Martin brand Tuna-Fish Sandwich Cologne, are you?

-- Damian

Jeff Seiler said...

No, Damian, when I said I thought you're losing it, I wasn't implying craziness. I was trying to imply that you were losing control of your evenhandedness. :)

Jeff Seiler said...

Nope, just my naturally fishy smell...