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A minor change   
09:17pm 30/11/2008
  So, my newly remodeled website is up and running on my new, upgraded server. In a further effort to simplify my life I will no longer be posting comics or news directly to Live Journal, but all of that material can still be accessed via my rss feed at basicinst_feed2.

Basic Instructions started out solely as a Live Journal blog, and I appreciate all my readers here have done for me. Thanks!
 
     

(4 did learn | become instructed)

 
It's been way too long in coming.   
08:59pm 29/11/2008
 

There will be a major upgrade to basicinstructions.net rolling out within the next day or three.

The downside of this is that the rss feeds you are currently using will stop working. If you wish to continue receiving my feed you'll have to subscribe to the following:

http://feeds.feedburner.com/basicinst

The upgrades to the site include, but are not limited to, the following:

A more reliable server! (No more "out of service" messages every time I post ... hopefully)

Actual, useable, SEARCHABLE archiving!

Comments on the strips themselves, not just the news posts.

Comics and news consolidated in the same page/feed.

Improved navigatability. (if that is a word)

A new look.

 
     

(1 did learn | become instructed)

 
Yes, it's a rerun   
07:03pm 26/11/2008
 

Sorry about that. The repeat is due to the holiday weekend and a sinus infection.

Have a happy Thanksgiving! I'll be giving thanks for the fact that you all read my comic.

 
     

(become instructed)

 
How to Express Condolences   
07:01pm 26/11/2008
 

Last Instructions

 
     

(become instructed)

 
A kernel of truth   
08:47pm 23/11/2008
 

My last two comics each contain a kernel of truth. My cat decided he needed to mew nonstop for an hour or so each night for about a week. He has since stopped.

We were considering getting one of our nephews a toy Indiana Jones bullwhip. Two Christmases ago we got him a Batman mask, but instead of gloves, it came with a chest-plate covered with fake muscles. If you pressed the Batman logo in the middle, it played the most hilarious sound ever made by a toy. A heroic voice would say "Look out, evil doers! I'm Batman!" Then there were sounds that were meant to simulate powerful blows landing Batman exerting himself, but sounded more like Batman being pummeled. Awesome.

Speaking of gifts, you know what makes a great one? MY BOOK!

 
     

(5 did learn | become instructed)

 
How to Modify Your Pet's Behavior   
08:30pm 23/11/2008
 

Last Instructions

 
     

(2 did learn | become instructed)

 
How to Choose a Gift for Someone You Don't Know Well   
10:35pm 19/11/2008
 

Last Instructions

 
     

(become instructed)

 
How to Suppress the Urge to Kill   
06:26pm 16/11/2008
 

Last Instructions

 
     

(1 did learn | become instructed)

 
How to Apply the Laws of Physics to Personal Relationships: Vol. 3   
09:08pm 12/11/2008
 

Last Instructions

 
     

(1 did learn | become instructed)

 
A quick note.   
09:00pm 09/11/2008
 

I have very little to say about this strip, except that it's the rare strip where Rick wins one. What can I say, I was feeling magnanimous.

So, as I said a couple of posts ago, I've written a blog post for Powell's Books. It contains another story from my childhood. It is a true story. I fictionalized "the big reveal" a bit for dramatic purposes, but the facts are solid.

So, Christmas is coming up. I'd be remiss if I didn't point out that my book makes a great gift. (I'll be including a sentence similar to this in all posts between now and Christmas. Properly warned, ye be, says I!)

 
     

(1 did learn | become instructed)

 
How to Accept a Compliment That's Directed at Someone Else   
08:48pm 09/11/2008
 

Last Instructions

 
     

(become instructed)

 
Political cartoonists   
10:15am 06/11/2008
 

The most recent strip is about being in a good mood. I happen to be in a good mood these last couple of days, read into that what you will. Those of you who aren't in a good mood have my sympathy because I remember what it's like.

I used to wonder why there were so many political cartoons in the paper. Now I know it's because comic strips are voracious devourers of comedy material. A comic runs through material so quickly that you end up trying to make something almost every idea you have, and during an election season you end up thinking a lot about politics.

I avoid political humor for two reasons. It dates the comic, and more importantly, it makes half of the readers feel unwelcome, and I want everyone to feel welcome at basicinstructions.net.

 
     

(2 did learn | become instructed)

 
How to Maintain a Good Mood   
09:18pm 05/11/2008
 

Last Instructions

 
     

(1 did learn | become instructed)

 
How to Find an Innovative Solution to a Seemingly Intractable Problem   
10:18pm 02/11/2008
 

Last Instructions

 
     

(become instructed)

 
There are some things you can't un-see.   
07:29pm 29/10/2008
 

Lest you think I was making it up, here's an image from the episode of Dirty Jobs in question:

The only thing I lied about in the strip is that on my farm it was pigs who were subjected to this "procedure," not sheep. The same principals apply. I have told this story to many people over the years, and they've rarely called me a liar to my face, but I could tell that few of them ever believed me, because they couldn't bare to.

Next week I will be guest-blogging at Powell's Books. I will be telling an equally bizarre and unbelievable story from my childhood. It is every bit as true as this one.

On an unrelated note, I'm looking at doing another marketing push, and I'm thinking of submitting to a few magazines this time. If any of you know of a magazine you think I'd be a good fit for, please let me know.

 
     

(2 did learn | become instructed)

 
How to get Vindication   
07:19pm 29/10/2008
 

Last Instructions

 
     

(3 did learn | become instructed)

 
How to Analyze a Song   
07:54pm 26/10/2008
 

Last Instructions

 
     

(2 did learn | become instructed)

 
Man, it's expensive to send stuff to Belgium!   
07:38pm 22/10/2008
 

This strip nearly drove me insane. I wrote myself into a corner and it took over a week to figure a way out. Good times.

I got a nice write up over at Comic Book Resources. I gave them an exclusive strip that will only run there. I'm very happy with it.

Have I mentioned that signed copies of my book, and customized infinite t-shirts are now available? I have? Good. I have added international shipping options for the book, and so far the customers who have purchased Infini-Tees have been quite happy with them.

 
     

(1 did learn | become instructed)

 
How to Make It Clear That You're Joking   
07:23pm 22/10/2008
 

Last Instructions

 
     

(1 did learn | become instructed)

 
Delicious   
09:28pm 19/10/2008
 

I'd be remiss if I didn't post the clip below, even if only to prove I didn't imagine it.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iq3V8HR-3rI


(Sorry LJ users. I couldn't get the embed to work.)



My favorite part is the almost apologetic tone of voice he uses to announce the ingredient. My wife and I saw this episode months ago and I can still make her laugh by spreading my arms and saying "piglets" in a mournful tone.


I'd also be remiss if I didn't point out again that signed copies of my book and customized infinite t-shirts are available now.


One last thing, I'm aware that I'm having server problems on a semi-regular basis. You can bypass those issues by viewing Basic instructions at GoComics. Their server is better than mine, and I still get a cut, so you're not harming me by going to them instead of my personal site.

 
     

(1 did learn | become instructed)