And By Fortress, I Mean Bathrobe

My original intention had been to leave my Fortress of Solitude a week sooner, but the very thought of returning to the intellectual tar pit we call the American citizenry depressed me and every time I considered it, the decision to extend my voluntary isolation was unequivocal.

As some of you might infer from my phrasing, the past few weeks were decidedly not of the Walden variety. I did not seclude myself in an attempt to better understand the society around me, but rather hid my mind and body away from a population I considered to be little more than an over-sized Agar plate – a viral culture dish teeming with debilitating diseases that just happen to have developed bipedal mobility and opposable thumbs.

Put simply, I was really starting to hate people.

Those of you who have seen the medical drama House might have some idea what I feared I was evolving into: an obnoxious but commanding asshole who, motivated as much by his chronic pain as his desire to succeed, abuses everyone around him with his singular brand of callous and cruel convictions. Dr. House is considerably smarter and better-looking than I am, but then I don't devour Vicodin like they're Junior Mints and my American accent is authentic so, you know, it pretty much evens out.

If you’ll allow me to quickly summarize it, I think a scene from one of the episodes* I watched near the start of my sabbatical should clarify things nicely:

Unable to determine what’s killing a small boy and desperate for more usable data, Dr. House suggests performing a spinal tap at vertebrae C2 or C3 – a precarious procedure, and profoundly risky even for the most experienced physician. Although they desperately covet a sample of the child's cerebrospinal fluid, his medical team balks, citing the high potential for permanent paralysis associated with a cervical puncture. The response offered by House is as inarguable as it is insensitive: "Ask the parents if they prefer to have their son in a wheelchair or dead."

I believe my exact reaction to that was gleefully shouting, "Ha! Take that, bitches!!"

Clearly, the new upgrade to Kirkware v42.1.0 had some bugs.

Anyway, sorry I left without so much as a “fuckthisshit-kirkneedsabreak,” but at the time, I was trying to shake off mankind the way an eight-year-old girl shakes off a handful of caterpillars. If it helps, my weeks of neurotic reclusiveness were not spent on the sofa staring at the television and passively inventing a more pungent personal odor (although I was able to squeeze in a bit of that, as well). Among other things, I finally pushed out a new t-shirt design that’s been languishing for months. In fact, whadda ya know, here it is right here!


You’ll probably get to read about other ways in which my xenophobic outbreak manifested itself, but I felt it important to mention the one that involved potential cash flow. You understand.

Oh, and to those of you who have sent me posts or PMs: Please allow a few days for me to catch up, a’ight? Right now, I gotta split. I'm missing an episode of House.

*Distractions, (Season 2, Episode 12)

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About kirkstarr

I draw pictures for a living.
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25 Responses to And By Fortress, I Mean Bathrobe

  1. Lurkertype says:

    Good to see you again! Love the t-shirt, clever and well-done!There is absolutely nothing wrong with sitting in your bathrobe watching (and identifying with) House. PJ's and sweats are also acceptable. regards to the critters — TK sez "hi, hi Deej!"

  2. Drude says:

    Hai hai Kirk, we missed you!!! I was trying to write you yesterday because you seemed to have been gone for too long, but I just got into an obstructed mental cavity of my own and gave up again… anyways… I'm so glad to hear from you!!! I saw those new designs over at your shop and thought you were gonna get sued for some copyrighty thingy… Because they are SO cool!! I hope you don't keep needing to shake off mankind…. that could be difficult.Big hugs to you (unless that's too invasive), and scritches to all the furries!

  3. Kevin Wolf says:

    Ahh, this explains why Vox has been so much less fun lately.

  4. Lurkertype says:

    Kirk, read arbed's post/PM's first… we were all thinking of you.tell Deej he needs to blog when Daddy isn't! or at least he needs to use those extra toes to tell us Daddy won't be blogging for a while.

  5. arbed says:

    Very glad you're feeling better. Unfortunately I don't find that hibernating helps my hatred of humankind much. I'm glad it did with you. I'm even thinking my relatively-newly added drug isn't helping at all but rather actually adding to it. Only more time will tell, I guess.I love the design. You are a very talented individual and it's great to see you back.

  6. Red Mosquito says:

    I didn't even notice you were gone. kidding. You were missed immensely. I'm glad you're back and not hating on mankind too much. I'd hate to hear you were living in a shack by the sea trying to catch/manufacture/genetically produce the next Cthulhu.

  7. tom says:

    I mean [this is good] only inasmuch as "I'm glad to see you're back." I always crater in January, Abyss-wise. The uberfrivolity of Xmas makes me want to gas the whole lot of them. That said, I missed you. You keep this joint interesting, and you crack me up.

  8. Kirk I don't know if this terrifies or touches you but your brief and unexpected absence has caused anxiety as far away as Australia!
    A well needed hiatus I can deal with but as the days wore on I was starting to imagine all kinds of awful things had happened to you or your family!
    You touch our minds, spirits and funny bones and in return we care enough to miss you. That can't be a creepy, stalking kind of bad thing can it?

  9. Steve B says:

    Good to have you back. And yes, no, I haven't emailed you yet. Cuz I just sorta suck that way.
    Given all the crazy shite going on in the world today, it's hard not to just want to slap some people in the head repeatedly. Everybody needs a little bathrobe time now and then.

  10. Welcome back. .So, what's your opinion on the state of mankind now that you've hibernated a bit?

  11. Berry 43.1.11 was upgraded this morning to 43.1.12, but it has a bug. I am unable to initialize my care circuits for all work subroutines.

  12. Toe-Knee says:

    I wants that shirt. And the girl in it too! She's not your wife or daughter or anything? Kuz I'm thinking moderately naughty thoughts about her right now.

  13. Kirk says:

    I so completely identify with Dr. Gregory House that I now instinctively roll my eyes whenever I hear the word "Lupus".As always, DG sends his love. I mentioned VOX and he had no idea what I was talking about. I was going to elaborate, but he saw a moth. I'll ask him again tonight.

  14. Kirk says:

    "I was trying to write you yesterday… but I just got into an obstructed mental cavity of my own and gave up again…" I completely understand. Thanks for thinking about me. 🙂 "I saw those new designs over at your shop and thought you were gonna get sued for some copyrighty thingy…"I do my best to be careful. Lovecraft's work slipped into the public domain, so all the Cthulhu stuff is clear. The newest design meets the requirements for parody, so it's also good to go.Back when Pluto was demoted from Planet to Pointless Rock, I designed a shirt that had the words "NOT A PLANET" and an arrow pointing down to an illustration of Mickey Mouse's dog. In the end, I decided it might be best not to put that one up for sale. I heard you cough up blood for weeks after Disney sues you."Big hugs to you (unless that's too invasive)…"Psh! Don't be silly.

  15. Kirk says:

    "Ahh, this explains why Vox has been so much less fun lately." Thanks, man. That was the very trouble, too, because I had nothing at all funny to say. Nothing. I couldn't even talk about stupid people and be funny. Just vicious. And vicious without any funny in it just makes everyone uncomfortable and sorry they showed up at all, you know?

  16. Kirk says:

    "I'm glad it did with you." Oh, did I give that impression? Oops.In all seriousness, I do my best to love everyone, but the simple fact of the matter is a great number of people are impossible to even tolerate, much less appreciate. Every now and then there seems to be a sharp increase in the number of people I have to interact with who also fit that description. If that number passes a certain threshold, I'm programmed to retreat into my shell (yes, bathrobe) rather than blow a sanity fuse.I am feeling much better now, though, yes. Thank you. 🙂

  17. Kirk says:

    "…trying to catch/manufacture/genetically produce…" Good ol' summoning is all it takes. Well, that and a whole buncha astronomy stuff I won't bore you with. Suffice it to say the "stars" gotta be "right" and they seldom are.Could be tomorrow, though.So don't go getting all uppity.

  18. Kirk says:

    "You keep this joint interesting, and you crack me up." You know, I really couldn't hope for anything better. Thanks a million, Tom!

  19. Kirk says:

    "Kirk I don't know if this terrifies or touches you but your brief and unexpected absence has caused anxiety as far away as Australia!" Touches. Deeply."You touch our minds, spirits and funny bones and in return we care
    enough to miss you. That can't be a creepy, stalking kind of bad thing
    can it?"It can, I suppose, but it isn't in this case. 🙂 It does, however, make it on the list of "Things That Make Kirk Blush".

  20. Kirk says:

    "Good to have you back. And yes, no, I haven't emailed you yet. Cuz I just sorta suck that way."Who doesn't? I read gobs of VOX posts yesterday, but how many comments did I leave? None. Cuz I just sorta suck that way. Don't stress it. 🙂

  21. Kirk says:

    "So, what's your opinion on the state of mankind now that you've hibernated a bit" Mankind as a whole is once again cherished and greatly loved, but I doubt I'll ever be so enlightened I can understand or value certain individuals.Thankfully, none of the people I find loathsome and deserving of painful death have a VOX. Boy, would that ever be awkward! 😉

  22. Kirk says:

    "Berry 43.1.11 was upgraded this morning to 43.1.12, but it has a bug. I am unable to initialize my care circuits for all work subroutines." That's not a bug, that's a feature.

  23. Kirk says:

    "I wants that shirt."MEN'S T-SHIRTS AS LOW AS $15.95! "And the girl in it too! She's not your wife or daughter or anything? Kuz I'm thinking moderately naughty thoughts about her right now."Ha ha ha! No, you're in the clear; she's a Zazzle model.

  24. Lauri says:

    Hooray!I see where you have been! And I know the feelings!!! I have been moderately hermaphroditic….or no, let me correct that….hermit-like, lately, too. I seem to have been Voxing enough, but I am sure avoiding live human contact like crazy. Sigh. Anyway, I am glad you are back! I love the shirt!!! Totally love the wordplay! Hugs!!! *goes off to take a nap and escape from the world*

  25. Lurkertype says:

    I do that too! Or mutter "it's NEVER lupus" under my breath. Which means it took an EXTREME amount of self-control to not do this when talking to my dr. last month and he mentioned his SIL has lupus. I thought I was going to explode my eardrums from the inside or something for a second. I don't know exactly what he said next, my brain just had a big cartoony LUPUS! boinging around in it.

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