Tag Archives: Seattle

27 Things

Once you’ve been tagged, you are supposed to write a note with 27 random things, facts, habits, or goals about you. At the end, choose 27 people to be tagged. You have to tag the person who tagged you.

(To do this, go to “notes” under tabs on your profile page, paste these instructions in the body of the note, type your 27 random things, tag 27 people (in the right hand corner of the app) then click publish.)

1. I chose to do the 27 things post sent by Jason instead of the 25 sent by Tom because Tom complained that 25 was a lot.
2. I lurk Fandom!Secrets because people revealing how much they obsess over fictional characters is hysterically funny to me.
3. My Seattle co-workers and I were close enough to talk about a lot of things that were not SFW. They know me as an expert on pervy internet subcultures, even though I myself am a part of none of them.
4. I used to own a ferret specifically because I wanted a pet that would sit on my shoulder. I was disappointed when he wouldn’t learn to stay up there.
5. At age 14 I was as obsessed with the Young Riders as any internet fan might be today, but I’m relieved that there was no internet and my childlike gushing was confined to spiral notebooks.
6. I’ve done extensive research on Lewis Carroll, visited Oxford and the vacation home in Wales, and read his diaries.
7. My first crush was at age 4 – the Professor on Gilligan’s Island. I remain an admirer.
8. One of my later crushes was Gary Owens. Yes, the voice of Space Ghost. With moustache.
9. I have never considered dating anyone younger than me. At least one year is a requirment, and frankly the larger the age gap the better.
10. I played baritone horn in high school until my senior year, when I finally got the courage to tell my parents that I’d hated band for years.
11. I got a ‘Most Talented’ nomination when I graduated from high school, which surprised me, because I didn’t think anyone at school had noticed I was an artist.
12. I once lost the regional level of an art competition to the judges’ granddaughter, whose piece was disqualified from going to state because the rules didn’t allow photocopied money pasted into the artwork. Actually nothing was supposed to be pasted on in the first place.
13. I was born in Beaumont, moved to Houston, moved to Beaumont, moved to Bellingham, moved to Beaumont, moved to Atlanta, moved to Savannah, summered in Orlando, moved to Atlanta, moved to Beaumont, moved to Seattle, then moved to Orlando.
14. My parents are selling their Beaumont house and moving to Orlando, so I will most definitely not be housing again in Beaumont.
15. I helped run a business for two years which had office space and employees on the payroll. I let my partner buy me out when I just couldn’t afford the struggle anymore.
16. My favorite game is observing strangers and making deductions about them. Extended observations shows I have a high accuracy rate.
17. If I could go back in time and tell myself one thing, it would be to avoid sugar and flour, avoiding years of pre-diabetic weight gain and fainting spells.
18. Despite distance, I will be a lifetime member of Cartoonists Northwest, and have an unusual number of acquaintances working in professional comics, from a DC Batman editor to newspaper comics writes to independents who actually do make a living at it.
19. My year working as an animator on Cartoon Network bumpers created relationships with animators that I still keep up with. I meet up with them whenever I get the chance, even though they are now all over the country.
20. I’m positive I’m married to one of the most talented artists alive. I take it for granted that every brushstroke will be genius.
21. I will karaoke on the slightest excuse, and when Jason told me he was developing an emergency karaoke list, I was very encouraging.
22. I left Georgia Tech because the pressures of Calculus III were giving me a nervous breakdown.
23. I’m writing a graphic novel about my grandfather that I think may be slightly explosive if published.
24. I think part of the fun of being a Republican is how much it ticks everybody off.
25. I watch Blade Runner at least once a year. I’ve seen it at least 30 times and regularly quote it.
26. I’ve gotten the short end of things so many times that I have little sympathy for whiny pity parties. Pick it up and try again.
27. When I would tell my father my thoughts about something, he would say, “Yeah, but is that real, or just feelings?” I live my life by that philosophy.

Author of Strawberry Shortcake: Return of the Purple Pie Man, Disney’s Frozen Comic Collection, Transformers: Robots in Disguise Animated and Littlest Pet Shop: Open for Business. She’s written for IDW Publishing, Hasbro, Lion Forge, American Greetings and Scholastic, and her work has been discussed in Comics Beat and The Washington Post. Subscribe to the newsletter

The Layoff Carousel Goes Round Again

In 1999, I had been working for an animation studio for just over half a year. The Cartoon Network had been doing a campaign with us that ended over Christmas, and although they threw us a fantastic open bar party, my old friend Brian accurately described it as a parting gift. The work dried up, and so did my burgeoning animation career.

In the summer of 1999, I had been struggling so long I’d needed money from my parents to make rent. I schmoozed my way into a job at an audio studio with a small graphics department. I learned all the software they had quickly and won them a few accounts. They were paying me a very small salary with the promise that IF they decided to hire me, they MIGHT offer me more. I couldn’t live on it but I wanted the experience. At the end of the summer, on the day they offered me a job at no higher rate, I had already gotten a job at IBM.

In the winter of 2001, I had been working at IBM two years. There were a lot of young designers working there on e-learning projects, and I was the head of their very first foray into Flash. E-learning didn’t turn out to be a viable product for them after all. All of those designers lost their jobs, and as the experimental area, I was the first. I had no option but to go back to Texas and move in with my parents, devoting myself full-time to a contract I’d been doing with a manufacturing company.

In the spring of 2003, the company I’d helped start couldn’t make payroll. The manufacturing firm had canceled their contract with us, and I couldn’t make my bills. I had my partner buy me out. With nothing in my pocket and not a soul waiting for me, I took a flight to Seattle and started over.

In the fall of 2003, I’d been getting some hours at an internet media firm off Lake Union. There weren’t enough hours to live on. I’d was looking again.

In the winter of 2004, I’d been working for Microsof for three months. I was coordinating with corporations on their Flash ads, sometimes taking them as is, but usually modifying them severely to meet Microsoft’s strict file size requirements. The contract ended. I called the internet media studio and got enough hours to keep me going for awhile, but that work eventually dried up. At the end of that March, I remember sitting on the kitchen floor and wondering if I was ever going to find something that would last a little while.

It’s now the winter of 2008, and Wyndham is going through a round of layoffs so large that I am sure I will be out of work. The first Wyndham layoff I went through happened a few months after I started, but it wasn’t me that time. The second one was a little over a year ago, but I agreed to relocate to Florida. The third time was this last October, and that was the most difficult of all, because of all the people that resent me so much now for surviving. I will never understand that. That’s an attitude that could only come from someone who hasn’t had a career like mine, one that ebbs and flows like waves in the sea. So now I expect it will be me too, but some kind people, my real friends, who have sent kind words shouldn’t worry. For me this is an old story, not even an interesting one. Jobs come and go. And maybe, as someone once said, there is a little relief to be found in there somewhere.

Author of Strawberry Shortcake: Return of the Purple Pie Man, Disney’s Frozen Comic Collection, Transformers: Robots in Disguise Animated and Littlest Pet Shop: Open for Business. She’s written for IDW Publishing, Hasbro, Lion Forge, American Greetings and Scholastic, and her work has been discussed in Comics Beat and The Washington Post. Subscribe to the newsletter

Stranger in a Strange Land

It’s no secret that my company announced in a press release Monday that there would be layoffs. On Friday night I went to not one but two parties to try to cheer myself up, though I’m afraid it didn’t last through the weekend. Last year about 25 people moved from Seattle to Orlando to work in the corporate office. Many of them were at Kristen’s Friday night, relaxing with a glass of wine or two in the open air. Kristen has a beautiful restored home in Winter Park and as an ideal location to gather, the transplants have met there for a series of parties. Few of us have had time to get to know many people outside of work since we’ve arrived. As afternoon slipped into evening, one after another expressed a misty-eyed longing for the Northwest. Should anything happen to their jobs, they would go back. Having had perhaps more difficulty establishing myself in my new city than most, I am facing losing nearly everyone I’ve invested time into getting to know this year.

I’ve moved from one city to another no less than 10 times. There’s no longing inside me to be in Atlanta, Savannah, Houston, Bellingham, Seattle or Beaumont. What I long for is to come to a resting place, where I don’t spend each day pushing down the feeling in the back of my mind that this home is temporary, this life is only for now. But roots in Orlando have been elusive.

I tossed back my wine, snatched a little of the spinach dip and dashed into the night to make my next appointment at Howl at the Moon. It was Karen’s 25th birthday and you can tell she loves a party. Her friends were dazzling, but it’s not exactly the right environment for making new friends. The dueling piano bar is raucous and loud, and the back-up guitars and drums make it even more impossible to do anything but enjoy the music. Several co-workers I enjoy spending time with showed up and it made the evening. Kyle, you’re a blast when you loosen up, that’s a fact. Nancy bought shots (the same Slutty Red-Heads Kristen ordered us at the company’s TravelShare kick-off) and I took it like a man. Much better than the tequila shot a couple of years ago that I yakked in front of the Senior VP of Sales.

I stumbled into the night and into a Subway. As I sat outside on bench on International Drive, munching a sub, I sent out a text I somewhat regret but at the same time, speaks to the brevity of life. We think the people around us will always be there, even though we know everything is temporary. We lay our heads down on the block, stretch out our arms like we’re flying into the infinity, and we’re still surprised when the axe falls. There have been a lot of times when the opportunity is over, and I never said the things I wanted to say. I’m not sure if I’m going to manage it this time or not… Axes fall so much more quickly than you think they will.

Author of Strawberry Shortcake: Return of the Purple Pie Man, Disney’s Frozen Comic Collection, Transformers: Robots in Disguise Animated and Littlest Pet Shop: Open for Business. She’s written for IDW Publishing, Hasbro, Lion Forge, American Greetings and Scholastic, and her work has been discussed in Comics Beat and The Washington Post. Subscribe to the newsletter