STAPLEGENIUS #3 cover by Nels and myself

       Ahh, STAPLEGENIUS #3….

      So as we’ve previously established, back in January of 2000 I put out the first issue of STAPLEGENIUS, and was very happy with the (admittedly) uneven results.  Issue two soon followed, and with it disaster (both creatively and for the creators).  Then came summer of 2000, and with it STAPLEGENIUS #3–the issue that “changed everything” and made me very excited about what STAPLEGENIUS was evolving into.  So how did STAPLEGENIUS do such a 180?

    First off–LOCATION! LOCATION! LOCATION!  Shortly after Nels and Co. got unfairly evicted from 1902, Pat and I(roomies at the time) found ourselves at odds with our landlord, and it was agreed that it would be in the interest of all parties if Pat and I broke our lease early and moved—a whole half a block away.  It was then that Pat, Nels, myself and “the Don” moved into the bacheloriest of bachelor pads 1238 University Ave NE (Matt, as was his way, was an almost de facto squatter roommate as that he was often there).   This was the best thing for STAPLEGENIUS, mostly cause I could now harass Nels and Pat in person and daily to “Get to drawing!!!”  And get to drawing they (and I) did.  So much so that looking at STAPLEGENIUS #3 again after all these years I would say that it’s probably a 99% solid issue.  If I had the time and inclination I would scan and post the whole damn thing…..but I don’t….so here’s some highlights instead:



   Pat was always a busy guy–he had a full-time job, a lady friend, an upstart acting career, AND he was always trying to teach himself to do new things like airbrush and master computer editing technology.  But he still found some time to do a few drawings.  Cat drawings, mostly.  There were lots of cat drawings in those days.   Example…


   God damn I love that drawing!  On my to-do list of tattoos, the “FUCK WORK CAT” is #2, and I swear one day I will adorn my body with it.  Anyway…in addition to many, many, many drawings of cats in strange scenarios, Nels also (at my repeated and incessant request) returned to a character from a comic he did for STAPLEGENIUS #1–MONSTER PIG-FACE BOY–and did a several page “story”.


    I was pumped from the move and possibilities and brought about and started doing a lot of new work.  My first project was to try out the “daily strip” format of storytelling, and “IT’S WAR” was the result. 

    IT’S WAR ran for two issues (eight strips in total) before I moved onto other things, but it will be back.  Oh yes, it will be back…

    Hey speaking of war, here’s a gag panel I did one night and included in STAPLEGENIUS #3.  I drew it as a reaction to a short, messy, stupid “relationship”.  It wouldn’t be until I looked at it again over a year later that it took on a whole new meaning.  Can you figure out why?…

        Ahh 2000…what a naive time it was, huh?  Speaking of naive, at this time in my life I was really into autobio and thinly veiled autobio comics like LOWLIFE and KING-CAT and BOX OFFICE POISON, so I thought I’d try my hand at one myself.  The result was painfully embarrassing.  Seriously, I can’t believe I was ever this open about my silly, trite life.  Seriously.  Embarrassing.  You really shouldn’t read this.  True, I probably just shouldn’t post it to begin with, but you really shouldn’t read it.  Really.

   Yep…I warned you, but you just wouldn’t listen.  Postscript to that tale:  I ended up tracking down Mary so I could give her a copy of STAPLEGENIUS #3, and we immediatly picked up as best friends again.  I even helped get her a job at the TV station I was working at the time, and we car-pooled and hung out everyday.  Years later, I would be gone from that job but Mary would still be there and help get Nels hired there.  They still both work there today.  Oh life…

    Last but not least fun tidbit, the official STAPLEGENIUS email debuts.  It still exists and is used to this day.  It’s a yahoo address.  Can you figure out what it is? 


    Geez, looking back this cat fixation was kinda creepy.


  1. 1 Bud
    01/11/2010 at 09:09

    I wish I’d been a part of this madness…
    So jealous…

    • 01/11/2010 at 16:52

      Ahh…had you seen the actual living conditions we squalored in, you may not have been so jealous, Bud. What this really means, Bud, is you have to buy a building in Northeast we can all share a studio at.

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