Tuesday, February 17, 2009

OUCH! San Diego CityBeat Major Douchebag Award

OMG this is insanely funny! I had actually been thinking about writing a satirical piece after all the other cartoonists and I started belly-aching about losing our papers from them going out of business and whatnot. It's funny stuff and I thought it would be funny to have a guy say:

"Screw you! At least when you had a job it was super awesome. My job is to clean the tiny hairs out of urinals at a ballpark!"

Well now, Edwin Decker, of the esteemed, San Diego City Beat, has beaten me to it and done me one better...
with an amazing "open letter" taking each of us rich crybaby cartoonists to task individually in some of the most humorless, self-pitying, gen X, real-artists-must-starve hyperbole I've seen in a long time.

It reminds me of a guy at a newspaper years ago who started publishing my cartoons without permission or money. Of course I called him up and read him the copyright act. It turned out I was being ripped off by a fellow cartoonist! He was shocked by my disapproval, and actually argued with me about what a jerk I was not allowing cartoons to be free.

He said, "Jeez, I don't know why you're complaining, I'd give anything to have my cartoons published anywhere."

Here's Edwin directly addressing the cartoonist Max Cannon.

You draw cartoons. If cartoon-drawing is anything like column-writing, you sit at your desk with your wine and your weed—Big Sonic Chill dripping its pollen from your speakers—and an expensive computer doing all your heavy lifting.

[Cannon makes $1000 per strip.] I won’t reveal how much my column earns, except to say that it can’t even buy me a small bindy of coke and an hour with a bottom-dollar street hooker.
Pollen dripping from speakers? Bottom-dollar street hookers? No, cartooning must not be anything like column-writing! Edwin continues:
Get this. Some cartoonists have even taken to asking for donations, such as Lloyd Dangle (“Troubletown”), who wrote that his website will now have to be viewer-supported. “That’s why I’ve added the Donate button,” he explained.

Well, how ’bout that? A mother-jumpin’ donate button!

Dude, Lloyd, don’t you see the folly of your ways? You are asking strangers—who are probably broker than you—to support your little hobby so that you won’t have to go out and get a real job like ditch-digging or cotton-picking. If I were a ditch-digger or a cotton-picker, and I saw your donate button—oh yeah, I’d donate something all right.

Congratulations Edwin, you just made it into my traveling 21 years of Troubletown floor show slide show! And I'm sending you a Troubletown T-shirt!

Tip to you right-wingers always leaving your quickly-deleted obscenities in my comments box: Learn from Edwin! Would it be so hard to write entertaining, maudlin, unintentionally funny, and genuinely douchy letters like his? I'll print 'em, share 'em, and make you famous!


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I thought it was cute how he quoted me out of context, as though I'd suggested everyone was going to stop reading altweeklies if the comics go away. But whatever. D-bag is as d-bag does.

Now if you'll excuse me, my top-dollar call boy is waiting (Don't tell Mr. Slowpoke!)

11:13 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

And so the opening shot of the great cartoonist civil war of 2009 rings out like an avalanche of... Paper! And the blood shall run like so much... Ink! And the bodies shall fall as... Great Depression-era bankers tossing themselves from the Chrysler building! Wait, scratch that last one.
Although, retaliation via t-shirts is far more peaceful then drive-by shootings and water balloons filled with sulfuric acid or fire ants.

1:36 AM  
Blogger Joe VDB said...

Dang. I'm glad it's not me on the receiving end of your white hot anger of a thousand suns.

Sadly, I think we'll see more of this kind of drivel (Edwin's!) come out as we circle the drain faster. It brings out the best and the worst instincts in people.

....And it's the moderately-priced hookers that are so hard to give up.

2:31 AM  
Blogger Brian McFadden said...

Edwin's sure got our number. I draw all of my cartoons whilst be-monocled and be-top-hatted and eating grapes fed to me by those damned dirty columnists.

7:11 AM  
Blogger Lloyd Dangle said...

Thanks for the comments! Yeah, I know I let the heat of the thousand suns make me lose my "No-Drama ODangle" composure for a minute, but can you believe I got TWO donations overnight as a result of Edwin's taunting? I love comics readers!

Everybody knows, Jen Sorensen, that you're an anti-columnist and have a pretty high opinion of your power to drive newspaper sales! And McFadden and I are just too elitist to care.

Jonathan and VDB: You know if we were illustrators we'd be at each other's throats! Cartoonist have at least a slight sense of solidarity. Although I do like to knife Sorensen in the back when I can.

9:47 AM  
Blogger Jeff Crook said...

He does sort of have a point.

At the top of his head.

9:57 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

... And a hole in his head. But that's beside the point.

10:20 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The REST of Ed Decker's post in San Diego CityBeat (edited due, ironically, to space limitations due to budget cuts).

But in this time of economic downturn, cartoonists aren't the only ones bitchin' and moanin'. Police Officers are whining that cutbacks in staffing and patrols are making their jobs "more dangerous". Pansies. These jokers make darn good money at taxpayer expense and often have retirement rights after 20 f'n years and still they complain. Most of us would be willing to prowl around looking for evil-doers for free if those criminal-loving liberal bastards would let us. These guys should get over themselves.

And how about those soldiers carping about substandard military equipment and protection (probably while hanging out at the USO for free)? To be fair, not all of them are this way, of course. Some realize that, in the words of Donald R, you fight with the equipment you have, not what you would like to have. Hey, a good craftsman never blames his tools. These mama's boys don't realize how good they have it and, on top of everything else, they get payed, too!

And of course, those effete members of the teaching profession bleat on about class size and lack of books and teacher's aids. Some cry about spending their own money for classroom materials. These idiots are lucky to have jobs! How do they create any wealth for their employers? They seem to think being a college graduate entitles them to a job pushing their socialist agendas on our impressionable youth. Most of 'em can't get a REAL job, I guess.

Now, I have nothing against police, soldiers, teachers or, for that matter, cartoonists. And there are lots more folks like these, of course. But these people obviously think that they are irreplacable and expect to make a living doing what they should be thankful they have the privilege to do at all. The sooner they realize this, the sooner they will stop looking like shrill, whiney poopy-faces.

10:46 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'd like to admit right here that I tend to pick up the area alt-weekly ONLY to read Tom Tomorrow and Red Meat. Although, it's been a while and I don't know if both (or either?) are still there.

10:57 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Decker's book of bong water poetry features, as a pull quote, an endorsement from his parents.

'Nuff said.

Anyway, my first-person cartoonist response to Ed's bullshit: http://www.whatisdeepfried.com/2009/02/18/it-is-to-laugh/

1:11 PM  
Blogger R M said...

Has Citybeat laid off its IT staff? I only get server errors from its website.

4:29 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

I hope Decker gets mauled by his pet monkey.

10:43 PM  
Blogger ed decker said...

Oh come on, really? Not one person in here thinks I had a point? That to take a tone of "woe is me" at a time when so many people are suffering, when you have the greatest job in the universe - an artist who makes a living off his art - is just a bit offputting? No one sees it that way? really? Wow.

You know, I never said cartooning was easy, I just was snickering at Max Cannon's piss-poor choice of the word "slaved," when there a so many people out there, as Dangle said, cleaning toilets in the ballpark.

That was the point of my column. Perhaps you hated the way I wrote it, my tone, my lame metaphors - but somebody's gotta come out of the woodwork here and say that the overall point was sound. anybody?

Some responses to random comments

1)RM - no, the CityBeat website was down for a bit because they just remodeled it. It's up now.

2) Jen Sorensen, yes, sorry, In hindsight, I believe your quote was mishandled. apologies.

3) Keox: you make my point for me. I am in no way downplaying the hard times we are all facing right now, only pointing out that it is unbecoming of some to complain in the manner that they did, in the forum that they did, while others suffer more. How you can compare my suggestion that cartoonists are whining about cutbacks with soldiers whining about cutbacks is beyond me. You have proven my point.

5) Jason: The endorsement from my parents on the cover of my book was supposed to be a joke. It says, "He was such a good boy growing up, we don't know what happened."

How you missed that it wasn't a serious endorsement begs the question of how you could be in the business of comedy in the first place.

12:28 AM  
Blogger ed decker said...

oh yeah, and I forgot to mention, Lloyd, that there was nothing "self pitying" about my column. I said over and over how lucky I felt to have my little space in CityBeat and receive my modest income. Indeed, it is Max Cannon, you, and Tom Tomorrow who are clearly the self pitiers here. How do you not see that?

2:02 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ha ha ha! "IT staff." Hilarious.

Um, no, we don't have an IT staff. We're a barely-getting-by alt-weekly (remember the point of all this no-money-for-cartoons business?).

Anyhoo, yes, our site was down for a while yesterday while our contracted web guy overhauled our site. It's up again, and while there are still glitches and missing content, Ed's column, in all it's piss-you-off glory, is there.

Thanks for remembering that newspapers are forums for debate, where diverse, often provocative, opinions are presented. Cheers!

Dave Rolland
San Diego CityBeat

8:59 AM  
Blogger Lloyd Dangle said...

Hey Ed, I totally think you had a point! There's nothing worse than a bunch of artists whining about their situation––like the world owes 'em a living! That's why I was working on a satirical piece before you beat me to it. I loved your article, but I'm sure not in the way you intended. But you seem to have a tin ear for irony yourself, because at least everything I've written about it has been half sarcastic. My "donate" button showing me rattling a cup is meant to be funny. Although, thanks to you, I did get over $200 in unexpected donations yesterday!

Fair enough about the self-pitying thing. No hard feelings! What size T-shirt do you wear?

9:10 AM  
Blogger ed decker said...

Double XXL - and don't forget to include my half of the 200 bucks you now owe me

9:52 AM  
Blogger Lloyd Dangle said...

Folks, I stopped the comments on this post because some of them were getting nasty and Ed and I are best friends now; we just got tickets to go see the Eagles together. Move along, nothing to see here, move along.

8:12 AM  

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