Tuesday, March 21, 2006


On a cosmic scale, compared to vast, mindboggling length and breadth and unknowable age of the universe, 100 is a tiny sum, a piddling amount. On a human scale, however, confined to one small planet with our three score and twenty lifespan, 100 of anything is a big fat freakin' deal. That is why we commemorate 100th birthdays and 100th anniversaries of historic events, and celebrate 100th episodes of TV series or issues of periodicals. It is also why I am pleased to announce that you are even now reading The Word From On High's 100th entry.
I began this blog, as some of you loyal readers may remember, as a supplement to my writing for The Atomic Tomorrow during my brief and ill fated association with that publication. After I left TAT, a story that I promise I shall tell some day, Atomic Pop, as it was then called, after the section of the paper which I edited, lay dormant for many months, and I was without a venue to share my writing with the world.
So, a couple of months ago, I was reading Hey, Rube!, a collection of columns by Hunter S. Thompson. Thompson has been one of my favorite writer ever since I first read Fear and Loathing In Las Vegas over two decades ago. More than any other writer, reading Thompson's work fills me with an almost insatiable desire to write, and even these later writings, though a pale shadow of his landmark work of the early 70's, did indeed get my dormant creative juices flowing.
I once remarked to a friend of mine, whom I'll call Doug Wykoff because, what the hell, it happens to be his name, that I wanted to write like Thompson. "You couldn't handle the drugs," was Doug's offhand reply.
Which is true enough. I get tipsy after half a beer and the farthest I've ever gotten into drugs was passing around a joint with friends at a party, which I'm sure 87.5% of you did back in your college days. However, Doug missed the real point not only of my statement, but of Thompson's writing. I certainly didn't want to drop acid and other even more exotic chemicals, run amok in Vegas and skip out on my hotel bill, though that certainly sounds like fun. No, I said I wanted to write like HST, not act like him. What I sought to emulate was his passion, his savage humor and finely honed sense of outrage and uncanny ability to get to the heart of any story and place himself there.
But it wasn't just Thompson's prose in Hey, Rube!that inspired me, it was where those columns had originally appeared: the Internet, specificly ESPN.com's page 2.
I can imagine that the lightbulb that signifies someone having an inspiration in cartoons was clearly visible above my oversized and vaguely football shaped head as I decided that I would revive this blog. All I had to do was change everything about it from the name and the look right down to the URL. Fortunately, I was able to do all that but I wasn't sure what I should call it. However, the title The Word From On High; derived not only from my egotistical wish to be seen as an expert on absolutely everything but also from the street where I live, High Street, the main drag running North and South through the very center of Columbus; Ohio, had served me well as a column title in both the Small Press Syndicate's Rap Sheet and TAT, so I saw no reason not to revive for this endeavor.
Since then, the business of updating this blog has gone from a once in a while, on and off, whenever I have the time kind of thing to a daily obscession, as withnessed by the fact that in six months of its Atomic Pop incarnation, this blog saw only about 30 entries. All the rest leading up to and including this 100th post have all been logged since I converted it to The Word on February 6.
I would like to thank everyone who has been reading this on a regular basis and especially those who've taken the time to leave comments. Special thanks in that department goes out to my most frequent and outspoken commentator/ critic, "Ineffable" Eric Clark. But even more gratifying than having my friends read and comment on my blog has been finding comments from people I don't know. This is a sure sign that The Word is getting out there in the world and having some sort of impact, in as much that people are thinking about what I'm saying and being moved to respond to it. That is what I would like all my writing, be it my comic strips or these jumbled rantings, to accomplish.
Thanks again and Keep Reading. I'm just getting warmed up.

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