In the beginning, for various reasons that I have now successfully identified as stupid and childish, I was determined to not like the webcomic "A Softer World." Mostly, I hated that it was just photographs with words. It seemed, for lack of a better word, lazy.

Of course, this is not the case. Like sushi, what seems light and easy to consume is more nutritious than it might appear. Also, there's the distinct possibility that it has a parasite of some kind living in it.

Really, I hated that we had to deal with all this business of sketching, inking and coloring our strip, when all they had to do was find a photograph that was suitably out-of-focus and throw some typewriter text across it.

While this appears to be an exercise in imitable hackery, it reveals a mad genius at work, crafting horrifying but funny three line poems. This realization has brought me to the inevitable conclusion that the "how" of a webcomic is largely irrelevant. The only thing that matters at all is whether the level of non-specific enjoyment a person feels is higher after having consumed the product. Anyone who reads ASW will tell you that it's generally higher after reading an installment.

Scott Kurtz has decided that his feud with print comickers needed to be turned up to 11. He hopped on the DailyCartoonist.Com a few days ago, made some innocuous comments that were interpreted in a snarky light and was promptly banned from leaving comments.

The pile of ashes his banning left behind fertilized the soil and a conversation that could only take place on comment threads like this one quickly shot up, covering the ground like kudzu or creeping vines.

Wade in there with a hatchet if you like. I feel that Paul and I have already made our point.

I'm in California for a few more days, then it's back across the fly-over states to, well, one of the fly-over states.

Believe everything you've heard about the weather here. It's all true. But don't order a scotch at a California Pizza Kitchen. Nine and a half fucking dollars.