Respect is Earned

Let me start by saying that I am anti-war, anti-murder and anti-killing-in-general. So obviously I am not a typical American. I know that the idea of not killing people is pretty extreme given the culture we live in. Don’t let that stop you from reading this. I know I am some sort of crazy pacifist but maybe I can give you something to think about, or at least something you can be pissed off about later.

Given that I am against violence I think that my opinions are not really that far out there. However, I never really see people talking about this all that much because I guess it is rather taboo. Then again, this is the internet and what is it for if not for bringing taboo things out in the open. So here we go.

I do not have any respect for people that choose a career that consists of bringing violence to others and sometimes killing them. Yes, I am talking about soldiers. I know it is very ‘wrong’ to say anything even slightly against soldiers. I just do not get that. Why does this group of people automatically get respect for doing something that I am morally opposed to? It doesn’t add up to me.

I suppose there was a time in this country when serving in the military meant you were willing to give your life to defend this country. I actually wish that was still what our military was about. Unfortunately our military is not about national defense, and has not been for some time. I know that some of you will disagree with that. For those that do think our military is about national defense I want you to think about all of our latest military operations, list them out and then put a check next  to each one that was pivotal in defending our shores. The last great war was 70 years ago, yet we have not stopped killing people overseas since.

 So today we have people who sign up for the military, and we are supposed to applaud them for their courage. They are possibly facing their own deaths,  and I am sure that does take quite a bit of courage. I know that I certainly could not muster the strength to send myself to war, so I will give them the courage card. Is that what we are supposed to respect them for? I have a hard time accepting that. We don’t respect everybody who sacrifices their own lives for a cause. If we did we would have to give the same respect we give to soldiers to suicide bombers or cultists who drink poisoned kool-aid. Yet we do not.  Why is that? Usually it is because we do not agree with the cause that they support.

 

When it comes to terrorists we do not agree with the cause of killing random people in the United States. When it comes to soldiers I do not agree with the cause of killing random people over seas. Yet I am expected to automatically support the people who do agree with that second cause.

 

That is precisely what I don’t get. I look at human life as valuable and in that context war and terrorism are so similar that when you stand back and look at the whole picture you can barely tell them apart. One is despised with horror and the other is respected with honor. I know that the world will never make sense to me because I am probably totally insane. If killing people is wrong, then how am I supposed to respect people that make a career out of killing people? I think about this often and imagine I cannot be the only person that sees a problem with all of this. Yet I never see people talk about it. So there you have it. I do not like violence or death, and I have no respect for those that choose to bring things such as that to the world.

 

Welcome back…

My Face

So here I am, living at home again. I really did not think my life would come down to this again but it has, so I am going to do the only thing that makes sense to do and make the best of it.

My goals for the next few months include studying to increase my job opportunities, get my creative side flowing again with some more videos and blogs as well as getting my license back. Hopefully before the end of the year I will be at least back on track with where I was in life before it all came crashing down again perhaps I will be doing even better.

The new adventure begins now!

One Last Thing….

It has been a long time since I have sat down and wrote a blog post. I am not 100% certain that anybody reads the things that I write here, however I still feel like I am letting people down when I neglect to write. I certainly am letting myself down in the least.

My life has been.. interesting, as of late. Things have not been going as well as I would have liked them to have gone. To sum it up I am on shaky status with my current minimum-wage job, my lease is up at my apartment complex and I do not have anywhere else to move to yet, and my depression has hit an almost all time low. I still do my best to remain optimistic as ever, only to find myself just not thinking about the things that I need to get done and putting them off.  A hopeless feeling has surrounded me in my life.

As I will be most likely couch-hopping for maybe a month or two until I can afford to find a new apartment there may be even less Ian on the internet very soon. I am not sure if I am going to have access to a computer at all very soon other than library access or through a friend. So I will not be spending much time chatting, gaming, or reading the news. All of these things are very sad to me as these things are pretty much all my life has become lately. On the brighter side of that, those things are likely some of the things holding me back and not being able to do them may force me to get my life in order.

Just recently I applied for a job which would be almost like a dream job to me. I may not be as qualified for the position as they would like me to be but I am hoping that I am more qualified than the other applicants that I am competing with.  It would be splendid to make more than minimum-wage.

Since I haven’t pointed it out in a blog post or news update yet. You should all check out PaintComic.com I have updated the site quite a bit and added more comics. I still do not have the complete collection online again yet (I am actually ‘remastering’ them before putting them back up) however there is enough to enjoy.

Otherwise, I hope everyone out there on the good ol’ internet is having a better year than me and I will be back with you all soon!

My thoughts on Michigan…

I have lived in Michigan my entire life. The first half of my life took place in Charlotte, MI. The second half of my life has taken place in Lansing. Through all of my years as a Michigander I have heard an enormous amount of complaining from the people that live here about how terrible of a place this is to live. This of course has been heightened in the past 10 or so years due to the rapid decline of the state’s economy.

A lot of people talk of leaving, and a lot of people have left. There are a considerable amount of young people leaving the state for greener pastures either to go to school or after they complete school. Many of them will never return.

I admit I too have thought about leaving many times. There is a very large part of me that would like nothing more than to pack my bags and explore the world. Just to find out what all of the fuss is about. There is, however, an even larger part of me that realizes that I need to stay.  Maybe the idea of staying in a dying state sounds strange to you, so let me explain why.
I believe that Michigan can be a capitol of creativity. I see so much untapped potential in the people here.

People who for generations never dreamed of doing anything besides what their parents did, working in the automobile factories. Those factories are gone now and we are left with this large population of out-of-work citizens that likely have no idea what to do with their lives. Inside everyone is some kind of creative genius just waiting to come out. It may not come in the same ways for everyone, but I do think that it is there. If this group of people who have lived here, like me, there entire lives could just get in touch with that creative vision inside of them, the combined force of artistic creation would be incredible.

Creativity has historically thrived in impoverished communities.  I think this happens for a number of reasons. An obvious reason would be that people who do not have jobs have much more free time to think and express their thoughts through various mediums. Another likely cause is that in poorer areas housing prices are much lower ( this is definitely the case here in Lansing) and artists generally do not make enough money to live the rich life. I also imagine that the pain that a person goes through while struggling to find ways to eat unlocks something inside of them to reveal the artist within. It is tragic that things have gotten the way they are around here, but we can also look at this in a positive light. Having nothing is sometimes the greatest motivator that inspires greatness.

How can we achieve this? If your initial reaction when things get tough is to leave and find something better, I say farewell to you and good luck in your travels. However, if your instinct is to stay and to work through the troubles all around us then you are needed now more than ever. I want to be a part of the change this state needs and I hope that everybody reading this will agree. We have been given an opportunity to reinvent the state of Michigan into whatever we want it to be. We are no longer the state that makes all of the cars, and we won’t ever be again. The auto industry has abandoned this state and its people. It is time to say goodbye to that part of our history and to rebuild. It is not going to be easy and things will probably get much worse before then even begin to get slightly better. So ask yourself if moving away to work just another job is all you want out of life, or if you want to be a part of something bigger. We can do this, we can make this state great again. At least that is what I plan to do, but I can’t do it alone.

Minecraft…

So lately I have been playing a TON of Minecraft. The game speaks to the child in me that would spend countless hours playing with Lego’s as well as the child in me that spent an equally countless amount of hours playing video games. If you have not tried it out yet I highly suggest you do. Also, check out this sweet Mario statue I just built. I know that lots of people do pixel art in the game, but this is my first crack at it. I do plan to make one with the proper colors at some point when I harvest enough dyes and wool. Enjoy!

Statue of Mario made of bricks

Mario is glorious indeed.

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Growing up Trek…

Growing up I had a very traditional upbringing for a white American. I grew up to divorced parents who each had partial custody of my brother and I. Our parents both worked at General Motors and both got remarried while we were still young. We went to a pretty middle of the road school, to a rather standard church and lived rather typical middle-class lives. There was drama, as there always is in split families, though I would say our family was a model of a modern family.

As much as I hate to admit it, I am now an adult. I have a well defined personality and world view that is no doubt shaped by the events that

Indubitably Awesome

Indubitably Awesome

have occurred throughout my life. The strange thing to me has always been how different I see things than most people I know. I always keep an open mind, questioning everything. I don’t accept things at face value, even when those things come from my elders or people in power. I somehow have developed an inquisitive mind that is unlike that of most people around me. For the longest time I could not figure out why that was.

Recently I was re-watching a TV show I enjoyed as a child and I started to realize that this particular show may be responsible for it all. That show is Star Trek (The Next Generation, to be precise.) I watched the show when I was younger because my brother watched it, and everything he did was obviously the coolest thing in the world to me. So I watched the show a lot. I don’t know if I always understood what was going on in each episode but it certainly piqued my curiosity. Looking back I see how this show influenced my mind, getting me to think about things critically. Creating and interest in scientific reasoning.

When I was a teenager I began to become very interested in physics, I remembered all of these fantastic things that I had seen on Star Trek. I remember a book my brother had “The Physics of Star Trek” that tried to explain the science on the show using real world theories and knowledge.  In High School I once asked my physics teacher about string theory and was thrown back a bit when he said he wasn’t allowed to discuss it because it was still too new. This made science seem forbidden and even more mysterious to me and just made me want to learn more. So I did, over the years I took it upon myself to stay up to date on any new advances in the fields of physics, reading books when I could and just reading the internet the rest of the time.

Star Trek taught me to be open to things that were different from me. It helped me learn how to think critically. It opened my mind to possibilities that I never would have thought of. I think I can safely say I would not be the person I am today without Star Trek in my life. I always thought that the things I saw on TV didn’t effect me that much, but I suppose in this case being brought up watching TV ended up being a good thing. Thank you Gene Roddenberry, you are a most awesome creator of tales.

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Welcome to the 90’s!

So a while back I was talking about building a bona-fide 90’s style website for fun. I am not sure why I didn’t do it at the time since such a site would not take very long to build at all. However I did finally get around to it. For now it is my current placeholder site over at Ian.Bulock.com. However once I actually get a decent working portfolio site built that will be there instead. So for a permenant link to the 90’s abmonition check out 90s.green-glasses.com I will update that forwarding link to wherever I end placing it in the end. I may update it from time to time if I think of other cool 90’s style site enhancements. Let me know what you think!

Going Back In Time

Take a Trip Back in Time

Also, big thanks go to animatedgif.net which is also a 90’s style site that offers a great selection of old school animated gif files. If you ever create something like this I highly suggest checking it out!

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Socially BookMark Us!

I realize that most people read this blog and any other articles on this site via my personal Facebook page. I am completely fine with this as I realize that going to an individuals actual website is very 1990’s. I would however like to point out that if you like the things I post, whether it be comics blogs or videos, you can always just click on the title on facebook and be brought to my site. Why would you want to do this?

There are actually a few reasons. One you will be supporting my decision to have a personal website in an age of facebook-everything. Two you can actually see the articles in the manner that are intended to be seen. Facebook ruins formatting and tends to make all of my pictures look tiny. The third are the ever useful sharing and bookmarking tools at the bottom of each post. You can share my posts with your friends on Reddit, Digg, and many other great bookmarking sites. You can also get printer friendly versions or even a PDF copy. You can even click a like button straight from my site which will send more people here instead of just to the copies of the articles on facebook. This may sound like shameless self promoting. Well that is because it is! However if you only want to read my stuff on facebook. I totally understand.

Painting the Night Away…

Spent the past hour or so working on PaintComic.com. There has been literally nothing on that page for about a year now so I figured if I am going to start making comics again then I

should re-establish the site. It looks mostly like the old site did only I added a background image that looks something like notebook paper. The new comic and all of the images on the site have transparent backgrounds so the look works well for the most part I think.
I tried to go for a completely hand drawn look for the site which fits well with the theme of the comic. The only issue may be trying to figure out where to click for links but I don’t think it will be too much of a problem. Let me know what you think. Is the background too cheesy? I have a few more ideas for the site but will implement them in the future. As well as adding all of the comics before #44 onto the site.

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