Strap up, ladies and germs; we're going out into the UnderDark.

Whenever we have an idea that we like but we know isn't fully developed, we'll stash it away until we need to get a strip done quick. This continuity is an idea we had a while back, and we were glad to finally have an excuse to dust it off and put it on front street. That excuse? The Fourth of July and the fact that we're both borderline alcoholics.

Speaking of which, this weekend marks the first time in 2 years that Paul and I have actually seen each other face to face. This auspicious occasion is made even more special by the fact that a friend of ours from high school whom we haven't seen in a decade has made a special guest appearance, making for the only kind of reunion any of us would ever attend. I speak, naturally, of Mr. Houston Dupré. Learn that name; the world will know it soon.

This was a weekend of locally brewed beer, cookout food and two old friends whom I haven't seen in ages; A new standard for Fourth of July's has been set, and I see no way the next one can compare.

Our Illustrated FML is officially going up next weekend. That means you all have one week left of guaranteed uninterrupted Crooked Gremlins service before thousands of new readers come barging in here, upturning the furniture and generally leaving a mess. I've done everything I can to shore up the levees, but I can certainly foresee some bandwidth issues.