Right up front I’m going to totally own that I have a vested interest in this particular magazine project. ‘Cause J and I are massively addicted to this fairly new humor magazine “American Bystander” and want many, many more issues to be published so we can hug them in our greedy arms and croon over them in joy and laughter. We aren’t affiliated in any way with it’s creators or their publishing venture. We just really, really want them to be able to keep this wonderful magazine going.

American Bystander is a rare beastie: the print humor magazine. Decades ago there were these cool things that came in the mail or that you picked up from the newsstand that your mother hated and you and all your friends loved. These odd paper bundles were filled with funny articles, comics and fake ads that made people howl and roll around holding their stomachs. It was great. But those days are gone.

Flash forward. Now there is a chance to revive the printed humor magazine. American Bystander in Kickstarter for the funding of printing issue #3.


This is a wicked funny magazine. J and I have issues #1 and #2 and love, love, love them.

bystander-1        bystander-2

Issue #1 has a viciously funny parody of Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged. Here’s a pic of an article from issue #2:


This fake ad appears in both issues:


So why am I posting this appeal to fund this project? Oh come on, you had to know where I was going with this. I was shocked today to go to the project page and find that with only five days to go they haven’t yet met their goal. So many people loved #1 and #2 that I was sure that #3 would fund with no problems.

Now I’m worried. So pretty please go fund this. And then share it with all your friends and ask them to fund it too. Then share it with your enemies, your grandma, your brewista, and the guy down the hall, oh and don’t forget that co-worker who always asks you to buy cookies from his kid.

Do it for me, do it for you, just do it damn it!


Oh and you can get #3 and pdfs of #1 and #2 for only $30.     Hooray!

As promised, I tracked down the follow-up book by A Coney Tale author Paul Ratz de Tagyos. Yup, it’s time for Showdown at Lonesome Pellet.


An old timey western with coneys (rabbits). What could be better?

This book is sillier and funnier than the first one and little kiddies are gonna giggle a lot when you read it to them. OK, the big kiddies too!


First off it’s about these coneys who live in a dusty old west town named, yes you guessed it, Lonesome Pellet. Established in the Pellet Rush days it’s now just a quiet little town. Except for the Pointy Brothers.


As with A Coney Tale a great deal of the charm and humor of this book is in the illustrations. Check out the names of the products at the feed store, my favorite: “We carry Rolinda Moss”. I just love the charges on the wanted posters: Feed Theft, Littering, Smoking, Pushing Coneys, Saying Bad Words, and Being Bad.


But then a stranger does appear . . . wearing an entirely peculiar hat. A Radish Hat. Will he save the bullied residents of Lonesome Pellet? How?

Well our stranger, being polite as a proper coney should, visits the sheriff and introduces himself. His name is Saladin and his card has his motto “Have Fur — Will Travel”. Why am I not showing you this? Because this post is image heavy enough already.


So let’s go right to the heart of any old west town: the saloon. In this case the Bunny Hop Saloon where our hero Saladin (sans hat) is having a carrot juice at the bar. Again, for me it’s in the details: the newspaper headline says “Archeologists Claim Discovery of Giant Carrot in Old Flanders” and “Feed Poisoning — We Thought They Were Raisins!”. The signage, the carrot tops littering the floor, the card players, the dumpy little stove, even the pink dressed floozie coney are all a delight to me.


My favorite bar detail is the carrot juice dispenser. Anyone who’s ever had a cage-living pet has seen this bottle many times. How priceless to put it behind the bar among the bottles and barrels.


So to reestablish peace, Saladin and the towns folk trap the Pointy Brothers and send them off on the noon train to face justice and jail time.


And as in all good westerns our intrepid hero walks off into the sunset.

All and all I’m really glad I tracked down and acquired this book for my collection. Amazon has a number of used copies for reasonable prices so if you liked this you can easily get your own copy.

As my book is signed “See y’all on the ol’ bunny trail”.

‘Cause if you do I’m about to make your day.

He has a new book in the works. And it’s a poem dear to my heart.

Goblin Market - Omar Rayyan

Yes, indeedy: Goblin Market by Christina Rossetti. It’s on Kickstarter so go back it already!

I can’t remember where I first saw Omar’s work but it was likely either Spectrum or Cricket magazine. I do remember that it was love at first sight. He has a print of Alice and the Griffin playing chess in his Etsy shop that I just love — if only I could find the wall space. Oh, the curse of the itty little house. Ok, so I could likely shoe horn it in somewhere — the large is only 13 x 19 inches, but just now I defo can’t afford it and getting it framed too. It will have to be a “do it later” project for now.

Hey, here’s something fun to do. Go here to Blick’s art contest for mixed media. Look at the entries. Then vote, hopefully for my bestest buddies piece:

phoenix - arlene navarro

OK, so I’m very biased but Arlene made this beautiful floating Phoenix which I like the best.

A few FAQs about Arlene and her work. She lives in Los Angeles, her pieces all have an ethereal cirque look, some are more fantastical, some more art deco, she is a friend of Blythe (so am I — finally), she is sweet and kind and very funny. Go here to see more of her work.

Got to dash, ugly thunderstorm rolling in. TTFN

Wow. This is something I hadn’t heard in ages, but once upon a time was pretty much the soundtrack for my life. . . Puff the Magic Dragon by Peter, Paul and Mary.

puff magic dragon record

I went to the Muddy Color blog as I do most days and there it was a whole big lovely post by Donato about this great old song. Read the post, click play and if you’re like me you’ll put your head down and sing along. Hooray! I remembered most all the words.

Many, many thanks to Donato for loving Puff and for telling people that you have to keep your dream dragons alive. And yes, I still have the battered 45 from when I was just little.

Much love and some more pictures of Puff.

puff the magic dragon

puff magic dragon


This week I’m visiting with Little Red Riding Hood courtesy of Agence Eureka. If you are not familiar with that totally awesome blog you should click the link and check it out. It is emphera heaven!



This particular entry is a Toy Theatre. How cool is that?


And here is a diagram showing how to put it together. You’ll need some cardboard to make the box that serves as a surround, cereal or cracker boxes will work. Use a wire or a bamboo skewer as a handle for the figures. Or pipe cleaners or whatever else you have handy. Remember the important thing is to Have Some Fun!

I’ve been thinking about fairy tales a lot lately. No real reason, just something about the hot weather I guess.

Maybe it’s the heat that makes me long for cool breezes off the lake, in the shade of big, big trees. Which leads me to Hansel and Gretel. I mean, who hasn’t wanted a secret little get-away cottage in the deep dark forest? Especially one made of food.

Hansel and Gretel House

So this one is also a paper model. With an oven. Which you could use to make s’mores or a roast turkey or some cookies to make a matching wishing well. Bonus, it has a weirdo looking paper doll Gretel with some spare clothes.

Hansel and Gretel outside the Witch's House

This house has a gingerbread rooster roof ornament, pretzels trim and almond cookie quoins on the corner of the house. Plus a twisty tree and that not quite a fence of pretzels and almond cookies.

Hansel Gretel - Voodoo gingerbread house

Similar to the last one this house has voodoo face cookies, people cookies, a bunny cookie and check out the snake in the lower right left. As in your other right.

hansel-and-gretel - anton pieck

I love the curvy organic-ness of this house by Anton Pieck, I really like his illustration style — you should do a google image search of him.

Hansel and Gretel puppet book

This puppet book with a house of real cookies and candy is kinda jokey but I still like it.

vegetable house

And lastly, this is not a Hansel and Gretel house but maybe you could think of it as a green healthy alternative.