Monday, April 2, 2018


It is not easy to cope with the never-ending assaults on democracy and simple human decency from the Dumpster Administration, the GOP, the NRA and the alt-right Nazis who infect America and, indeed, the world. It would be much easier to sink into despair and try to stay off their radar. But that’s not me and that’s not most of you out there. We press on and we resist the monsters.

One of my most successful coping mechanisms is to remind myself of the things that make me happy. I do this every day in snippets I share on Facebook and Twitter. At the end of each month, I gather my happy thoughts and collect them in a bloggy thing.

Here are the things that made me happy in March...

March 1: The first day of any month. I don’t know what it is about me, but my confidence and optimism are always high at the start of a new month. I’m excited for what comes next.

March 2: U.K. love for “War Toy,” a story I wrote 43 years ago for Unknown Worlds of Science Fiction #2 [March 1975}. It’s one of my favorites as well..

March 3: Allen Bellman. We have so few of our Golden Age creators still with us. That Allen is so appreciative, caring and funny just makes his continued presence more dear. I love the guy!

March 4: Reading my Daredevil stories for the first time in years. Some things impressed me. Other things made me wince. I should do a column or two about these comic books.

March 5: Leslie Jones on Saturday Night Live. Throughout SNL’s long run, only a few performers have made me laugh out loud regularly. She’s one of those few and I love her madly.

March 6: Jimmy Kimmel’s opening monolog for the 90th annual Academy Awards. His combination of comedy and social commentary entertained  and informed.

March 7: Last night’s Black Lightning episode was one “I didn’t see that coming” moment after another. Riveting television.

March 8: Mine! Comicmix’s anthology celebrating liberty and freedom is filled with great comics creators making important statements.

March 9: Cleveland ConCoction. Though not my usual venue, I had a terrific time and was treated very well by the show. If they ask me back, I plan to arrange things so I can enjoy more activities and panels.
March 10: My favorite Cleveland ConCoction cosplay was by the young woman who cosplayed as both Supergirl and Kara Danvers.

March 11: Beverly Hills Cop. Yes, there’s a scene or two that makes 2018 Tony Isabella wince, but it’s a fun film I can watch again and again. I want “Axel’s Theme” to be my theme.

March 12: The Daily Show’s terrific artificial intelligence series. It was very funny while still being informative.

March 13: This amazing “third act” of my life. I can’t wait to see what comes next. Hint: I am not exclusive to any one publisher or client...and not adverse to non-comics projects.

March 14: My dental implants. After two years and so much money my head still spins at the thought of it, I have new teeth. My smile is even better now. I wonder if I can auction off my old dentures to cover some of the expense.

March 15: Getting a “fan letter” on a package. I posted this online when it happened, but I wanted to make sure it was included in this  monthly round-up of the things that make me happy.

March 16: Jessica Jones. I enjoyed the first episode of the second season, especially the appearance of The Whizzer and the mention of Maynard Tiboldt, aka the Ringmaster in the Marvel comic books.

March 17: Black Lightning nominated for Best Superhero Television Series in the Saturn Awards. I would vote for it, but I may be just a tad biased.

March 18: The Black Lightning cast will be hitting the conventions this year. I urge you to take every opportunity to meet these most talented actors. They are all good people.

March 19: Honey Nut Chex. Gluten free. No high fructose corn syrup. No artificial flavor, colors or preservatives. Touch of real honey. Natural almond flavor. It’s probably not as good for me as its box claims, but I’m into this cereal.
March 20: The Simpsons. “Homer Is Where the Art Isn't” was a great send-up of the 1970s TV series Banacek. I’m talking literal laugh out loud funny. Well done.

March 21: Every episode of Black Lightning has great human moments. This week, my favorite was the scene were Jennifer tells Anissa she has online fans.

March 22: Cashews. Now that I have dental implants, I can eat them again. This is the start of my bionic rebirth.

March 23: Sex and Love Around the World with Christine Amanpour on CNN. Fascinating and informative.

March 24: East Clark Elementary School. I had a great time talking to students, teachers and staff. I stayed later than planned so the principal of another school could drive over to meet me.

March 25: My “Coffee and Comics” workshop, sponsored by Cleveland Public Library and the Rising Star Coffee Roastery. What a terrific venue and audience.

March 26: Even when things don’t go as I might have wished, even in the pain, there is a certain excitement in figuring out what comes next.

March 27: Giannis Antetokounmpo of the Milwaukee Bucks. Within just minutes of the 60 Minutes piece on him, I found myself rooting for him. What an amazing athlete, what a nice young man.

March 28: In a “blink and you miss it” cameo, Sharktopus was in the “Mission Breakout” episode of the Guardians of the Galaxy cartoon. So was Fin Fang Foom.

March 29: Entertainment Weekly’s March 16/23 issue is like a love letter to Marvel’s movies. It’s a keeper.

March 30: Jessica Jones finally made some good choices in the last minutes of her second season finale. This whole “bad choices make good stories” thing is getting old for me.

March 31: The amazing Patton Oswalt is a Black Lightning fan. Just when I thought I couldn’t love this talented actor more.

On other matters...

A member of my family is having surgery in mid-April. I’m told it’s a routine surgery, but they will be off work and recovering for 6-8 weeks. I’ll be there most of the time. It'll be a stressful time and you really don’t want to annoy me during it.

I’m reviewing my appearance and convention schedule to see if there are events I need to drop and events I can add. To those fine folks waiting on this, I thank you for your patience.

There will be changes in my autograph policies at conventions and with items sent to me at my home. These will reflect the realities of the current times. When I post my usual preview of any event I’m  attending, I’ll announce what my policy will be at that event.

I’m not giving any interviews for the immediate future. I need to figure out what I’m doing next. I am not exclusive to DC Comics or any other client, so editors and publishers who appreciate terrific writing should not hesitate to contact me. I have many projects of my own that I will be pursuing, but those won’t keep me from accepting work I find challenging, fun and worthwhile.

Once we donate our old van to charity, I will take over control of our garage and begin work on what I hope will be several months of very cool Vast Accumulation of Stuff garage sales. I am determined to make considerable headway into reducing the VAOS to a much more manageable size. The better to move when Barb retires in five or so years.

Want a cultural icon like myself to relocate to your town or city? Send me a pitch. Places that offer tax breaks and other incentives to cultural icons have the best chance of getting me.

That’s all for now. I’ll be back tomorrow with more stuff.

© 2018 Tony Isabella

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