10/14/10: Way to shame me into updating again by commenting, people who comment! (Seriously, though, hi, welcome, and pull up one of the splintery old orange crates that we use for seating 'round these parts seein' as we can't afford no fancy chairs.)

The rules from
here still apply.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Meta: About.

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There are many fine blogs that discuss newspaper comics, either in aggregate or one strip at a time. You have your Comics Curmudgeons and your Big Al'ses (Al's-es?) in the former category. You have your Blather 'Bout Burl and your Crap Every Time in the latter.

I don't know that anyone's yet doin' this with Pluggers, and so that's where I come in.

On first sight, this daily one-panel offering may seem simple and down-to-earth; you've got ordinary folks, represented as animals for some reason, going about their lives, with all the ups and downs that entails. The strips are "written" by the readers themselves, who send in comments and suggestions to be illustrated by one Mr. Gary Brookins. It's all about the simple, the down-to-earth, the ordinary, the mundane, held up to the light to glean a chuckle from the audience -- that "80 percent of humanity who unceremoniously keep plugging along, balancing work, play and family life."

But then you read a few of them in a row and come to realize that apparently a plugger's life is incredibly depressing.

I find myself fascinated by this comic, and by what it says about its subject matter. These are real folks, accept no substitutions. They're by turns cheerfully anti-intellectual, a touch conservative and nuclear-family-centric, "charmingly" rustic or gently confused. They're overworked, underpaid and always on the verge of going under. To quote from the unlikely source of a radio commercial in Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, "This is real America -- drunk, proud, and unemployed." The only thing that's missing is the drinking, and what's to stop them from doing that off-panel? Surely in whatever crazy world they live in, even a bear can buy liquor if he's over 21.

That's basically where I'm going with this blog. Every day I plan to take a gander at the newest Pluggers, and every day I plan to write a short bit of commentary on it. I'm hoping to come through with a short piece of fiction inspired by each comic, because A) I don't know that anyone else is doing this, and B) I once considered myself something of a writer, but in later years I have gotten sorely out of the habit of actually writing. And so here we are.

I may go back and edit all up in this thing later with more information or an FAQ or something, but for now, I think the above is more than enough to get started with.

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