Monday, July 29, 2019

Grief experienced

It's no surprise to anyone who's ever seen art that grief is a powerful emotion that drives people to produce their most beautiful works. What's never talked about is how sometimes grief can make you produce shitty things, too. It's a cruel dichotomy - you either produce incomprehensible weepy mumblings, or something that, when you look back on it later, is actually moving. Something that reminds you of your humanity, buried under all that sadness and anger.
A shot of a valley. There is a river surrounded by trees. Far off into the valley is an oil field

In my case, this is certainly the case. I don't regard my photography as particularly special, but it is motivated by my grief for reasons I will explain.

I think humans like to think themselves as special in the world. Like we have an ultimate destiny and that our actions carry special meaning. But most importantly, we think that our deaths must have an existentially satisfying reason. Even though I know this human tendency is erroneous, I find myself looking for a reason that "makes sense" for my brother's death.

But the truth is that nothing can make sense of his death. It doesn't make sense to us because death is incomprehensible, at least in an experiential sense, to the living.
A shot of a sculpture of a Kit Fox skeleton

That's not to say that it's incomprehensible why we'd want it to make sense. I know that if I hadn't been clamoring for a reason, I would've never found out the real reason he died.

The night he died, my (quasi) expensive (second-hand) camera arrived in the mail. That night, I went out to collect evidence. I knew that it would be gone by a few days passing so I had to take pictures right then and there because I had to find a reason. I found some compelling evidence based on track marks from burning rubber against asphalt - I found that this could not have been a result of a good-natured, honest accident. So I took pictures. The problem is, they were blurry and difficult to make out. They are to date the worst pictures I have taken, I think. I'm pretty sure that's why the police didn't take my conclusions about the physical evidence seriously. But where my brother ended up vs. where the tracks started guaranteed that his death could not have been accidental. And the innate desire to make sense of death is what found that out.
a blurry and over exposed picture of shards of glass on the ground
This is the worst of the pictures I took

That same drive led me to become frustrated the police and search the web for information about Jason's killer. I eventually found his criminal record, but I knew what I ultimately wanted to find. I wanted to find information about Jason. I searched the dark web for the person who hit him to see if there was more information. After a few months of not finding anything, I gave up, but then I saw something on a message board that disturbed me deeply. I am not interested in listing the entire experience step for step here, but suffice it to say that I found proof that our very own mother had killed Jason. It broke my heart. She had been abusive in our childhood, and abusive toward our father before she left one night, but I had never expected murder.

I promptly sent this evidence to the police, but I have again not heard a response from them. I don't know what it is about grief - people don't seem to believe you when you bring them evidence. They don't want to see your grief, they don't want to be around your grief. They feel guilty enough the day of the funeral to comfort you, but only those who have experienced that kind of horror themselves seem to be able to empathize with you. Maybe that's why people invent support groups - only someone like oneself can understand you. Maybe it takes two souls to go through the same harrowing before they can understand each other.

 I don't know. But I do know one thing.

There was one picture that was never entered into evidence. I tried to take a picture of the road and my camera froze up. I had to shut it off just to get the shutter working again, and when I opened it back up, this picture was there:

I know that it's just the result of an overly high exposure time and a glint of light from a car headlight or something. And I'm the farthest person from religious, or superstitious most of the time. I don't even believe in life after death (not in that sense). But I want to tell myself that I caught a picture of his soul. Dancing in the dark, because even though his body had passed - his heart was free.

Wednesday, June 5, 2019

My Brother

On April 2nd this year, I lost my one and only loyal reader of this comic: My little brother. He was struck by a criminal driving a truck. My brother, Jason Quinn Kelly, is responsible for the entire "Lemon's Favorites" category, which unfortunately has now reached its terminus. It pains my heart every day to live without such a kind, caring soul. He kept my terrible sense of humor grounded by telling me which comics he thought were funny, and even after I stopped doing this comic, he encouraged me to start up again someday, always assuring me that at least he would read it. I miss him. I've put a petition on to get justice for him. Please sign if you have the time, assuming that anyone still reads this comic.

Sunday, January 20, 2019


Wednesday, June 6, 2018

I'm going to see if this blog lasts this long

this is five years from the start date. If you're reading this, it means I haven't cancelled this blog. Whether or not comics are still being posted, well, since i scheduled this post in 2013, I don't know.


as of the 2015 edit, things are looking up. In 2013, I assumed that I'd have forgotten this comic entirely and given up on it, but there are still comics.

I got my drawing tablet back, which has thrown updates back into regularity. I'm going to college soon! That's pretty neat.

as it turns out, going to college soon means that I don't have as much time to write the comic. Updates exist periodically, though.

I got me some real buttons now but still have no fans, as of 2016.

As of 2017 the comic is derelict. Please help me I'm trapped in a fortune cookie factory

nevermind i got out