1590 The Girl Who Lived.

I’m asleep. Will write blog later. Love, J.T.

Today is the Teen’s 18th birthday. She is very excited. I can’t even remember my 18th birthday. Basically nothing is going to change, although technically my parents are no longer her legal guardian. In the eyes of the law she is an adult and responsible for her own fate. Of course she’s still basically dependent on them, and me to a lesser degree, for food, shelter, and everything you need to not die. So things really aren’t changing at all. Not in a practical sense.
She wants a piercing for her birthday, which I don’t support, so I won’t contribute to. She hasn’t really appreciated any gift I’ve given her over the last two years, so now I just buy whatever I think will be useful to her and expect no gratitude. It’s kind of freeing in a way. Lowered expectations really are the key to happiness.
Yesterday I went to the store in daylight because it was, like, 58 degrees all day. It was still too hot inside, but I didn’t have to go to the car to cool off. I wanted to, but I was able to finish without having to. Today I don’t feel extra worse than normal, so I’m apparently doing better than I thought. On Friday I might try going to my old town to see the Hastings I worked at for so many years one last time before it closes on Saturday. It kind of feels like this weird, abusive, relationship I’ve had is coming to an end via death. I think the book portion of the store is actually a big loss for the town. A town without a dedicated bookstore always seems culturally bankrupt on some level. Hastings certainly wasn’t dedicated, but it was better than Wal-Mart, or Target. Honestly, I don’t know if that town could support an actual bookstore. I’m too far removed to guess at how much reading the populace does outside of the internet. In any case, it’s all part of the evolution of our culture generally, as we decide what roll physical books take in our lives now. I was buying books on Amazon even back when I worked at Hastings because their prices were identical with shipping, and I didn’t have to wait two weeks for the boo to show up. It’s actually pretty amazing that Hastings held on for so long really…
I still have nightmares from time to time about that store. Shopping really brings out the entitled worst in Americans. I would really like to know how it is in other countries. Do people treat staff like garbage everywhere, or do some places still have respect for the property of others, and other people? Let me know international readers. I’m very curious.


This is my first time being here before not only a blog but a list of comments. I feel like such an occasion is perfect for my first comment on this comic series. Gotta say I love it, I’m not smart enough or experience enough in writing to say what exactly makes this comic great and interesting so I’m not gonna try. However I do hate that I’ve caught up to the newest updates because now I gotta be patient. Damn my large amount of free time =-=

The good thing is that Jackie updates like a mad man. I don’t think I’ve read a comic with more regular or frequent updates. So you won’t be waiting long.

But yeah, I know that feel. Sounds like a good time for a reread, yeah?

Only one I can think of is Sinfest, but to be fair it’s a black and white, 4 panel comic whereas Jackie does colour and full pages

You folks must have different reading habits, because I can name two right off the bat that update 5-7 days a week in full color:

Schlock Mercenary (schlockmercenary.com – every day, full color, uninterrupted updates since 2000)

Stand Still Stay Silent (sssscomic.com – every weekday, full color)

Also, three comics that update every weekday with only occasional interruptions:

Quantum Vibe (quantumvibe.com – every weekday, full color)

Misfile (misfile.com – every weekday, penciled)

Zombie Roomie (zombieroomie.com – every weekday, full color)

Most of the rest that I read update 2-3 times per week and are in color, just like Between Failures, but are not necessarily as consistent as Jackie. There are a few exceptions (Girl Genius, Guilded Age), but if there’s one thing I’ve come to expect from reading webcomics for years now, it’s that there are few creators out there that stack up to Jackie’s consistency, even in times of personal crisis, over such a long period of time. The number seems to be growing, but it’s a tough industry to prosper in, especially since it usually takes 2-3 years before your readership numbers really pickup (there are exceptions, of course), and most cartoonists have to have a regular day job for at least the first 5-10 years before seeing any real profit, though services like Patreon appear to be helping shorten the lag time. I’ve read comments from some of the creators indicating that the industry is evolving and improving, but it still takes dedication, skill, and a lot of luck.

Thank you, Jackie, for being such a trooper when it comes to sharing your story with us, it means a lot to us readers to see it continue.

Least I Could Do
Girls with Slingshots (technically this one is over, they are just retouching, coloring and reposting now)
The Devil’s Panties
Questionable Content
Wapsi Square

Oh me oh my. Are we doing comic recs? Let me check my bookmarks.

Here are ones I follow that output 5 comics or more per week, with pretty good reliability.

El Goonish Shive (Two comics, MWF)
Questionable Content (M-F)
Sluggy Freelance (M-F)
Least I Could Do (All)
Bad Machinery (All)
Quantum Vibe (M-F)
Dumbing of Age (All)
SMBC (All)

If you’re looking for more things to read, Trix, I have some other recommendations. Don’t know how many of them you’ve already read, but it’s worth a shot.

Dominic Deegan
Girl Genius
Order of the Stick
Control Alt Delete
Grrl Power
Strong Female Protagonist

This is just the shortlist. I read somewhere between two and three times the number listed here in total, but they’re not all things I’d recommend unless you’d already read all of these. Hopefully this’ll put a dent in your free time? Let me know if you want any more recs – it’s one of my greatest pleasures in life, recommending things.

I see someone recommended Dominic Deegan! I also suggest Star Power, which is the writer’s current project, though I’m hoping they hit the big Patreon goal because I want to see The Legacy of Dominic Deegan.

How has nobody mentioned Something Positive (http://www.somethingpositive.net)? Fairly regular, and (almost) always funny. But I really enjoy Between Failures. Thank you for your hard work and dedication, Jackie. And happy birthday to the Teen (and many happy returns of the day).

I was wondering the same thing.

There’s also ‘Skin-Horse’ by Shaenon K Garrity and Jeffrey C Wells. It’s part of the Narbonic universe and can easily compete with Sydney Scoville Jr. for weirdness.

Seems like faulty reasoning on Nina’s part to me … you don’t need to blame someone for an event … you could not want to see them and be reminded of that event because you associate them with it …

the human mind works in mysterious ways, sometimes if someone is the sole survivor of a tragic event the sorrow and saddness and grief can cause that person to blame themselves, or it could be that Mrs.Melville could always be thinking something along the lines of “why did you survive and my daughter didn’t? It’s not fair that you survived and she didn’t., There fore i am going to bandaid my pain by blaming you.” or something like that. the human mind is a complex thing, no one can truely claim that they understand it.

Agreed. Where emotions are concerned, logic need not apply. Add to that opinions (especially political and religious type opinions) and you have a huge mess.

There are cases (I am assuming documented at least a bit) ranging from deadly (Incident at Ox Bow, both a book and a movie based of this true incident where a man is injured after selling some cattle, the purchasers are found and hanged, then exonerated afterword) to the reputation ruining (a la H.U.A.C. and the hollywood blacklistings).

I am also reminded of the AMC interpretation of Garth Ennis’s Preacher comic. Admission there, he WAS responsible, at least. Still, pretty much how people reacton a regular basis…

True; she could very well have those thoughts subconsciously. She may not want to see Nina or even be mad at her, but not be able to fully understand why. Heck, if we all understood our own thought processes, we wouldn’t need psychologists.

The linked portion of the archive was the first time I remember being excited for new comics to come out to finish an arc… I connected with T because I’ve always been that guy, in my social circle.

That said, I may have connected too strongly, because I’m also poly and Nina/T/Carol has always been my shipping, as it mirrors my own relationship pretty strongly.

But I love the comic, and your dude-writing-skills are why, so yay~

Survivor’s Guilt is bad enough when you do it to yourself. When someone else inlicts it on your ego… bad cess.


Which Lego Haunted House are you trying to build? There seem to be a number of them.

Early on I took as a bad sign for a mall or neighborhood when they loose the book store, even if it was some schlock establishment in the print business like Coles.
I despise them [Coles now Indigo] for buying out, killing and then redeveloping the property for condos a place once known as the World’s Biggest Bookstore. It was just off of Yonge Street in Toronto. The place could, would and did find you out of print anything [pre-internet] and had 7 foot shelves packed solid throughout the store, which mean you could buy a book series from start to the latest issue all in one go. I sure did at times.

Well, I’m Canadian, so I can’t really comment about the ugly face of consumerism. It’s pretty much the same here, just we’re a bit more polite. Our holiday sales and door crashers can still bring in a mad rush but I’ve never heard of anyone getting trampled in one.

I don’t know anybody who ever worked for a retail store so I can’t speak for France…
But it seems quite the same than in the US to me

Hi Jackie, wrt “Do people treat shop working staff like garbage in other countries” I can give you a yes in the U.K (although we’d call it rubbish). Not always, but sometimes and increasingly. I used to work on a checkout in a supermarket, some people seemed to store up every thing that had annoyed them about their entire shopping experience and unload it on you when they arrived at the checkout. Given that my job was basically to sit at the till for 8 hours ringing up sales and that I had no say in the stocking or lay-out decisions of the store, all I could do really was take it, nod along and promise to pass on their “thoughts”

Speaking as a consumer I would say I’ve seen an increase in my lifetime of customers forgetting that the shop assistants they are speaking with are also human beings and treating them like some low-life skivvy at their beck and call. They clearly firmly believe that the customer is always right, but haven’t the second half of that expression. “The customer is always right, but is often an idiot and could probably use your help”

It shouldn’t be that hard, the clue is in the name. Shop assistant!

We’re living in a world where it’s no longer first, second, or third world – it’s service economy or industrial economy. Manufactoring is now a third world economy staple, while service and more “white collar” economy makes up a greater portion of first & second world economies. And it’s very likely that technology will disrupt that reality even further.

I’m guessing The Teen has no idea what wants to be post-secondary education, and that’s fine. Maybe as a “gift,” have her search for Amy Poehler’s Smart Girls (I may have spelled it wrong, autocorrect is really messed up in iOS 10.) and see how it’s fine to not know what you want and better to find her calling. Besides that, maybe a $50 Amazon gift card?

Japan has fantastic customer service! The other day, when I used the self checkout line at the supermarket, I apparently missed grabbing a penny of my change. So, the employee watching that section runs up to me as I’m waking towards exiting to hand me back the penny. a penny! Overall, it’s just a different mentality, that working in retail isn’t the dregs of the job world, it’s a decent job. The overall Japanese mentality is so friendly too!

Definitely familiar with the ‘old job nightmare’ thing. Though, despite working at a Walmart for two years, mine are of the dish room at the college cafeteria.

To be fair, I don’t think my subconscious could come up with much worse than what had actually happened while I was a cart-pusher, and the clack-clack-clack of ceramic dishes at the end of a segmented conveyor belt is easily one of the worst noises in the world.

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