Thursday, April 27, 2017
Today we're celebrating filmmakers here at mixed media daily because, well,l that who was on the front page today. Up top we have Justin Chon, who just released a film about the Korean American experience during the 92 LA riots (did you know that this year is the 25th anniversary of the LA riots?). Down below we have Jonathan Demme, who passed away recently, and who of course directed a quiet little film called "The Silence of the Lambs," which pretty much makes him a goddamn national treasure. Also in local film-related news, the WGA might go on strike next week, which, if you're not in the entertainment business, will affect you not at all, but for me, well, let's just say that if it goes down I might have a lot more time to put into these drawings.
Wednesday, April 26, 2017
Ah jeez, look who showed up on the front page today. To be fair, I haven't had to draw the tang creeper in a while (19 days, to be exact! That's got to be a record here at mixed media daily). Trump's 100 day mark is coming up, so of course there are a lot of job performance think pieces popping up, including the one today in the LA Times whose accompanying photo provided the fodder for today's drawing. As a bonus I've included my own assessment of Trump in the illustration. Feel free to quote me on that.
Monday, April 24, 2017
I have to go iron some shirts and generally get ready for my day tomorrow, but let me mention the big story above the fold today: Marine Le Pen is in the French presidential runoff. Hey France, remember how all of us here in America joked around all through our presidential campaign after Trump won the Republican nomination? And then you remember what happened after that? So, um, don't let that happen in your country. Be smart, France!
Sunday, April 23, 2017
We move from Syria to Iraq for today's installment of "Cities that Are Living in Total Fucking Hell." Mosul absorbs a lot of ordnance from both sides of the Isis conflict, which is just a roundabout way of saying that our people have accidentally killed a bunch of Iraqis while trying to free them from Isis. War ain't pretty, but it also shouldn't be taking lightly. Or used as a diversionary tactic to draw attention away from your shitty poll numbers. You can't see it, but I'm looking in the White House's direction.
Saturday, April 22, 2017
The day's activities were full of promise (the March for Science, Earth Day, and Record Store Day all took place today), but the front page was not having any of it. Instead it implored you to take a long, hard look at Aleppo as it begins to return to whatever passes for normalcy in a city like Aleppo now that one of the fightin' sides has tucked it firmly within their sphere of influence. But fear not; if that article sent you into dark places, right next to it was a little story about some weird burger being served on North Korean airline flights. "North Korean Burger," by the way, would be an awesome name for a 7" record store day exclusive release. Ty Segall, I'm looking at you.
Friday, April 21, 2017
I don't know if there's ever been a point in history when labor hasn't been embattled, but that time certainly is not now. Whatever his campaign rhetoric might have been, Donald Trump is clearly, glaringly, anti-labor (in every sense of the word, really. How many trips has Trump made to Mar-a-Lago since taking office? And how much has that cost us as taxpayers?). I hope that one day we will have a real deal union renaissance, but we're most likely going to have to wait at least one election cycle.
Thursday, April 20, 2017
Apparently vast quantities of trees here in Southern California are dying off due to a variety of invasive insect species. That and the fact that many species of trees that grow here are not suited to our bone dry climate are quickly ushering in a horrible new era of treemageddeon, or the treepocalypse, or some other such cutesy portmanteau. Speaking of gnarly old trees that sexually harrassed much younger trees (that's what we were talking about, right?), Bill O'Reilly has been fired. And then handed $25 million dollars for being fired. Because America, I guess.
Wednesday, April 19, 2017
So it turns out that the USS Carl Vinson was never headed for the Korean peninsula. Between Kim Jong Un not being able to fire a missile without it blowing up in his face and Donald Trump having no clue where our warships are, I'm thinking maybe, just maybe, we will survive as a species because of good old-fashioned ineptitude. I for one am intrigued by our future of bookless libraries (!) and community choice aggregation programs.
Tuesday, April 18, 2017
There's a lot of yelling on the front page today: Erdogan is yelling at Europe, Mike Pence is yelling at North Korea, a bunch of Trump-supporting miscreants are yelling at anybody within earshot in hopes of getting into a fight, border agents are yelling in support of Trump. If the question, "is anybody listening to these asshats?" just popped into your head, allow me to answer it: no, nobody is listening to these asshats. But don't expect them to stop yelling.
Monday, April 17, 2017
Meet Don Cameron, the manager of a farm in Helm, CA, who's pioneering a method of reclaiming some of our storm water runoff by letting it flood his fields and slowly drain back into the soil, and thus into the San Joaquin Valley aquifer, where many of the central valley farmers get their water, and which has been overpumped in previous drought years. Kudos to you, Don! I hope you can get many of your fellow farmers to follow your wise example. And let me tell you, it's always nice to devote my sketching to things that don't make me angry. So I'm going to stop right here. But first I'll mention one other interesting California story on A1: there's been an Assembly bill proposed that would add tax on alcohol in order to eliminate sales tax on diapers and tampons. Needless to say, I was completely absorbed by these two stories. I'm sorry, I had to do it. But I'm finished now.
Sunday, April 16, 2017
Happy Easter/vernal equinox/wickerman-themed blood orgy/whatever you people do to blow off some steam this time of year. If you're a North Korean soldier with unwavering commitment to the motherland, you probably did hours of fascist lockstep marching. If you hate Donald Trump and all the shitty things he stands for, you maybe whipped up a sign and went to one of the many tax day marches that took place around the country. If you're one of Trump's cronies, you probably spent some time defending the administration's decision to keep all the White House visitor logs secret. And, in all likelihood, you were probably yelled at/laughed at for your pathetic attempt. But hey, that's just a hazard of your job. The important thing is that you spend your time and energy defending a person who lies so much that he really can't distinguish fact from fiction anymore, and in fact he doesn't care about that distinction anyway. That's the honorable path. You just stick with it. It's all gonna be fine.
Saturday, April 15, 2017
All right, we are all still here (I say that with only about 20% snark). Now we can get back to worrying about long term, slow burn endgame scenarios, like climate change and, uh, bullet trains. In all seriousness, California's bullet train project seems to be a rich tapestry of poor financial planning and inept logistics. It's almost like we hired the North Korean ICBM team to design and build our high speed rail system. In any case, let's call it a night, go color some eggs, and reconvene here tomorrow for, hopefully, another day.
Friday, April 14, 2017
This weekend is both the opening of Coachella here in sunny California and the Day of the Sun celebrations in North Korea. That is a broad spectrum of pageantry, my friends. Of course the performance roster at only one of these events might trigger all-out global nuclear annihilation. And I know you're all sitting back and saying, "I know, Lady Gaga, right?" But that's not at all what I'm talking about, you shallow bastard. If North Korea goes through with their incredibly stupid plan to conduct a nuclear test this weekend, and if Donald Trump decides to go with his incredibly stupid plan to launch an attack at North Korea if/when they do test a nuke, then I don't know---I guess if you die at Coachella while watching Father John Misty perform "Pure Comedy," you get a perfect score for activity/apocalypse synergy.
Thursday, April 13, 2017
The Punch and Judy show that currently passes for American foreign policy kept on keepin' on today. We dropped an enormous bomb on Afghanistan. We thoroughly freaked out North Korea. Russia's mad, or they're pretending they're mad so we won't catch on that they're totally making out with Trump behind the tool shed when no one is watching. China is just like, "We find your leader too dumb to work with. Is there, um anybody else we can talk to? Do we have to go to fucking Florida every time we want to discuss matters of state?" I guess all we can do in these troubled times is check in with the folks who hold the keys to preventing all-out nuclear holocaust: how's that Trump-colluding-with-Russia investigation thing going, Comey?
Wednesday, April 12, 2017
Tuesday, April 11, 2017
I was half expecting to be drawing the poor guy who got thrown off of a United Airlines flight for having the audacity to buy a ticket, but he did not appear (although a story about the incident did). Instead I got a wooden bridge, which, hell, I'll take it! And fine, I'll draw Gorsuch's stupid hand, too. And what's going to tie these two disparate things together? A school shooting, of course, because we live in America.
Monday, April 10, 2017
Well, hey, mixed media daily is proud to present the 100th drawing of this project today! The big stories for our sort-of-special day are the Isis bombing of Coptic Christian Churches in Egypt and Trump's plans to slash the budgets of the U.S.'s international health initiatives, because he cares so much about all those beautiful babies out there in the world. Even conservative hardasses like Bill Frist find the White House's proposed budget cuts heartless and potentially devastating to the citizens of developing nations. But still, maybe when those defunded populations start to die off Trump will launch some missiles at Malaria's airfield. To show he cares.
Sunday, April 9, 2017
It's Sunday, there's been a lot to process in the past week, so here at mixed media daily headquarters we're gonna kick back and enjoy the spring wildflowers. Well, we're going to allude to President Xi's surprise stop in Alaska. Speaking of Alaska, we're going to to read that story about how Exxon Mobil was working behind closed doors to retool their business to deal with the effects of the climate change science they were denying and disparaging in public. And hey, they're not the only climate change-denying assholes on the front page today; there is, of course, a story about Trump. But still, we're gonna spend some time admiring the poppies, and we encourage you to do the same. Just don't you know, walk all over them while you're admiring them.
Saturday, April 8, 2017
More than representing a picture of presidential power, the front page photo of Donald Trump meeting with President Xi Jinping of China in some ridiculous, garish, sad Palace of Versailles knockoff room in Mar-a-whatever the fuck it's called, his romper room for stupid people with too much money, is more a portrait of tastelessness and pathetic posturing than anything else. I doubt the Chinese were intimidated or impressed. I'd love to hear all the jokes they passed around among themselves after visiting that place, though; there's probably some comedy gold in there. In lighter news, Mr. Fries Man popped up on A1! I mean, if you want to impress some out-of-towners, get them a box of Mr. Fries Man shrimp and lemon garlic sauce fries. That's how you do it, Don.
Friday, April 7, 2017
Now I don't pretend to know the late Don Rickles' political leanings, but I can't imagine he wouldn't look at the tableau of political power couples on the front page and just be like, "Well, civilization was nice while it lasted." I mean, maybe I'm just projecting. In any case, rest in peace, Mr. Warmth; may your one-liners forever shake the heavens with laughter.
Thursday, April 6, 2017
There were plenty of stories on the front page to deal with today---visa scams, Gov. Brown's transport tax plan, Trump fawning over the authoritarian strongman currently in charge of Egypt---but sometimes the events of the day bleed into the drawing. To be fair, there was a story on A1 about Trump hinting that he would respond to the Syrian chemical weapon attack. But then, an hour or two later, I was listening to live NPR coverage of the Tomahawk missile bombardment of a Syrian military airbase, with the article still in front of me on my desk. I don't find anything comforting or correct about this bully and unrepentant liar dipping his toes into the act of waging war. I also find the timing awfully convenient, considering how much hot Russian espionage garbage is piling up around this administration. So I guess what I'm saying is, let's not all be distracted by a bunch of shiny missiles blowing up an airstrip in a war-torn country.
Wednesday, April 5, 2017
Man, some weeks this project just feels like a rogue's gallery of Trump Administration scumbags. On that note, meet Jared Kushner, the dead-eyed mannequin/Trump son-in-law who seems to now be in charge of a variety of enormous government projects he has no knowledge of and/or prior experience doing. Also, he's touted as the "people guy" by White House officials. I love this trend where people who don't know anything about the things they were elected to run get other people who are equally clueless to be in charge of those things for them. I was getting tired of seeing seasoned professionals lend their expertise and hard-earned wisdom to the business of running our vast, complicated democracy. This new way is much better. Yep.
Tuesday, April 4, 2017
You know, if you were ever tempted to think that maybe not much has changed fashion-wise since the early 90s, all you need do is look at a yearbook photo from that time and you'd be like, "Oh. Oh, jesus. So much has changed. I was insane for even entertaining that notion." I only bring this up because today's front page featured an early 90s yearbook photo of White House bootlick and Central Valley congressguy Devin Nunes. But let's be clear: I'm not faulting Rep. Nunes for his party in the front/more party in the back 90s haircut, or his blindingly white turtleneck (complimented by some species of cardigan, which I elected not to include here, for fear of the whole thing tipping over into parody), or anything else about this picture specifically. He was a 90s teen, and that's abundantly clear from the yearbook photo, and that's ok. But while the article about Nunes describes his constituents' unwavering support for him even though he derailed a House investigation into a sitting president possibly colluding with a hostile foreign power (I still can't believe that that is something I have to write or say occasionally), I am perfectly comfortable pinning fault on him for that derailment. He either did it intentionally, in which case he's an asshole who has no respect for the rule of law, or he didn't know what the fuck he was doing and bungled the whole thing, in which case he's an incompetent idiot.
Monday, April 3, 2017
You know you're reading an LA paper when almost everything on the front page is car related, death related, and "Beauty and the Beast" related. All great topics for drawing, but maybe not all at once (sorry, cars. I deal with you enough in my day to day). Oh, and that photo of Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch? You can ignore that, because Originalism is stupid.
Sunday, April 2, 2017
The Los Angeles Times made its own news today when it unleashed a withering assessment of Trump, not only as a president, but as a human being. I think the conclusion is, "he's sure as fuck not presidential, and we're totally on the fence about any claims he may have to be a member of the human race." All of which is a very fair assessment. Some folks might say it's a little too lenient, and you know what? Those folks have a valid point too.
All of this truth pouring out of the LA Times Editorial Board doesn't make me feel any better about the situation, of course. You know what does make me feel a little better about this monstrous clusterfuck? There are still a few adults in positions of power in our nation's capital. I'm looking at you, Rep. Schiff; make Burbank proud (and the rest of us significantly less terrified)!
Saturday, April 1, 2017
All those oddball font choices can only mean one thing---we have a guest paper today! Give a big, warm, flatlander's welcome to The Mountain Enterprise, a weekly paper serving the Mountain communities of the Tejon Pass, an area that connects Los Angeles to the Central Valley. We normally stick to daily papers here at mixed media daily, but news is news, yes? The story that owned the front page (and, in fact, many pages inside as well) was about a guy named Matthew Barr, who was reported to the police by an ex-girlfriend for something, and the investigation of this report led to a 14-hour standoff with police and SWAT teams and a hostage negotiator (although the way the story is written he doesn't appear to have had a hostage). It's not exactly traditional journalism, but it's a great story, full of meandering asides about Matthew's father, Kevin Barr, and the police personnel working the scene, and Matthew's bipolar disorder, and his relationship with an ex-girlfriend that set off a chain of events that led him to be holed up in a house, fending off a SWAT team with bear spray. The closest thing I can compare it to is lyrics to a Mark Kozelek song. That's not a criticism.
Mixed Media Daily will be back to regular old LA Times coverage tomorrow, so we can all get our fix of totally depressing national news.
Thursday, March 30, 2017
Corn is big, big business between the US and Mexico, and that relationship is now threatened because of Trump's "fuck everybody but 'murica" trade policy. If Mexico decides to buy the billions of dollars of corn that it currently buys from us from somewhere else, you know who's going to lose all that business? That's right, the farmers of Iowa and Nebraska, two states Trump won in the election. I'm sensing a pattern here. I mean, it's a nonsensical, idiotic pattern, but it's a pattern.
Wednesday, March 29, 2017
Two days in a row now that I've drawn some dude holding up a large item. I kind of hope I have a chance to do it again tomorrow; it's not often I get to work with a specific image several days in a row (Oroville Dam being the sole exception thus far this year).
So yesterday it was the environment, and today it's online privacy. The category, of course, is "Things the Republican-controlled Congress will ruin so that some asshat can make more money." That list is getting really long, my friends.
Tuesday, March 28, 2017
Hoo boy, there was a lot of stuff about team sports on the front page today. The raiders are moving to Vegas, because gambling and sports go together like Trump and environmental degradation. Yes, we get it, they're practically made for each other, but somebody's gonna get hurt. Anyway, if the Donald wants to eradicate the Clean Power Plan, he's got one hell of a fight ahead of him. So here's a case where his inherent laziness and inability to follow through on pretty much anything will stand to benefit the country. Sorry, coal industry; chances are your orange knight is not gonna close this deal, either.
Monday, March 27, 2017
"Invisible" popped up twice on the front page today. There was plenty of ink expended on sussing out the invisible thing, the unseen hand, the machinery churning behind the scenes, whether that scene be trial or protest or assassination. Or, on a much less grim note, the experience of being Latina and a Muslim convert, and how wearing a hijab can erase your Latina identity in the eyes of the rest of your community.
Sunday, March 26, 2017
So the front page showed up adorned with a bunch of really nice photos---it was a Sunday paper, gaze-at-all-this-loveliness kind of front page (and let's just give a shout-out now to Luis Sinco and Allen J. Schaben, who really made A1 a thing of beauty today). After days and days of wading through the sewer that is our national politics, it was mildly disconcerting! But very welcome. So thank you, photographer folk. We'll consider this Sunday an unofficial day of rest, and gird ourselves for whatever bullshit arrives on our doorsteps tomorrow morning.
Saturday, March 25, 2017
As much fun as it is to bask in the schadenfreude generated by the GOP's pathetic attempt at governing, it's best not to let such things consume all of our attention. A well-constructed front page is the perfect vehicle to thwart single-mindedness, because it will not limit itself to whatever's happening in your little corner of the globe. Today, for instance, A1 led off with the GOP healthcare fiasco (because how could you not? It's a story that triggers, all at once, joy and sadness and anger and WTF and OMG and like 17 other emotions that can only be summed up with emojis at this point), and right underneath that was a story about a coalition airstrike in Mosul that killed something like 200 civilians. Those are people that we were attempting to liberate from ISIS. It's a horror scenario, and it's a perfect, awful example of life in a war zone. And since we are a country that manufactures and maintains war zones, the very least we can do as citizens is be aware.
Friday, March 24, 2017
The Republican party this week was like that dude who comes into the party all cocksure he's ready to have the fuckin' night of his life, bro, who then gets superdrunk in about an hour, pukes on someone, passes out on the ping pong table in the basement, and then gets unceremoniously dumped on the back lawn, where he remains, in a pool of his own vomit, for the remainder of the night. Oh, and his friends totally write "penis" on his forehead with a sharpie.That's how the GOP is waking up today. You need a washcloth, bro?
Thursday, March 23, 2017
Well, that was a big news day. The biggest story---the attack in Britain near Parliament---is mostly absent from this drawing. The pixelated edge of Chuck Barris (RIP) comes from the A1 photo accompanying that story, but that's about it. I mean, it's a little complicated marrying a portrait of Chuck Barris to a homicide scene. You either draw the homicide scene, or you draw Chuck Barris. Of course, if Mr. Barris is to be believed, he himself was responsible for creating a few murder scenes. Still, the breakdown of the House Intelligence Committee's look into Russian meddling felt like a bigger story to me; I think it has much bigger ramifications down the road, no matter where it eventually leads.
Wednesday, March 22, 2017
Tuesday, March 21, 2017
What tiny beverage is FBI director James B. Comey prying open with his big old mitts? YooHoo? Martinelli's apple juice? Kombucha? I have no idea. That mysterious pony bottle only distracted me for a minute, because there's so much cool, refreshing information pouring out of the Congressional Hearings into Russian meddling in the election. Comey and NSA director Mike Rogers both calling bullshit on Trump's allegations that Obama wiretapped him; confirmation that the White House is being investigated for any role it may have had in the Russian meddling; local boy Adam Schiff (pictured just over the hangdog shoulder of Rogers) keeping it real and focused all through the hearings. I think everyone here's earned themselves a slice of cake! And after that, maybe there'll be time for a round of pin the tail on the donkey.
Monday, March 20, 2017
I hope none of you Angelenos tried to drive across town on Sunday, because if you did you were probably foiled by the L.A. Marathon. Congrats to all of you who ran (and ran and ran and ran and ran). You officially accomplished more in your big day of extreme cardio than Trump and his band of saber-rattling numbskulls has in the past 60 days.
Sunday, March 19, 2017
Those hands making sweet sweet love to that Gibson belong, of course, to the late great Chuck Berry. Who helped laid the foundations of rock n roll. Who was idolized by young upstarts like John Lennon and Eric Clapton. Who spent a little time in jail. Whose music was engraved onto a golden disc and launched into deep space aboard Voyager as a way to explain our culture to any alien life that might find it. Not bad for a kid from Missouri.
Saturday, March 18, 2017
Tillerson's senseless agitation of North Korea did make it to the front page today, but of course there was so much other stuff going on that I was not able to work it in at all. Maybe when the war starts (I'm kidding but I'm not, and I hope I'm completely wrong). Anyway, I went with the "Chancellor Merkel flew across an ocean for a babysitting gig" angle. An equally depressing story, in its own way. Not one that is going to lead to our planet being engulfed in a nuclear inferno, true, but man---can we have one state visit that doesn't end in embarrassment?
Friday, March 17, 2017
The news everywhere today was chock full of budget talk; we all learned the term "skinny budget," which means, roughly, "this is a half-assed assemblage of numbers and names of departments whose functions I'm only vaguely aware of, for the purpose of making it look like I know what i'm doing." Well, if you knew what you were doing, Don, you wouldn't have proposed budget cuts that almost surgically fuck over the very people who allowed you to squeak into office. But hey, you go with that budget. We'll see how everyone feels about it in 2018.
Thursday, March 16, 2017
Taking into account the draconian, heartless budget that the White House proposed recently, it makes sense that so much of the language on the front page would invoke obstruction and regression. The glimmer of hope right now is that so many members of congress---Republican as well as Democratic---find much to dislike in this bill (congress---they're just like us!). Let's hope they don't chicken out when it comes time to push back.
Wednesday, March 15, 2017
Happy Ides of March! I hope none of you got assassinated today. The non-creepy selfie-taker in today's drawing is Wendy Carillo, who's running in the April 4 primary for an open congressional seat in California's 34th district (so if you live there, don't forget to vote!), along with 18 other Democrats. I think there's a republican running too, but c'mon. This is Los Angeles, where we like our politicians like we like our marijuana laws: liberal.
Tuesday, March 14, 2017
If you told me that the belt buckles on the Sheriff uniforms here in LA county did not match the color of the sheriff's badges, I most likely would have just stared at you blankly for a few seconds and then gone back to whatever I was doing before you interrupted me with that nonsense. If you showed me side-by-side comparison shots of the uniforms to illustrate the difference, I would've laughed, because for some reason I find before/after photographs completely hilarious. And if your before/after diptych is to illustrate a slight change in belt buckle color---well, that's comedy gold.
Monday, March 13, 2017
If you, gentle reader, are a resident of our great golden state, get out to see some wildflowers this year. Apparently, with all the rains we've been having, they're bonkers. You know who should get out to see them this year, if only because he might be in jail the next time a bloom like this happens? Ex-Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca.
Sunday, March 12, 2017
Today's front page was a kid's menu of fun facts designed to make your Sunday much more depressing than you had anticipated: did you know you can effectively pay your way out of county jail in California? Did you know that if you're a low-income, older Trump voter you're probably going to lose your healthcare when the GOP rams through its replacement for the ACA? Did you know that nuclear weapons spend time traveling on our highways because of the decades-old systems in place to maintain them? Oh, and did you move your clock forward?
Saturday, March 11, 2017
Friday, March 10, 2017
Recently impeached South Korean President Park Geun-Hye was not the subject of any article that appeared on the front page today, but she did appear (twice!) in an advertisement at the very bottom of the page, under a block letter heading that implored South Korea to "IMPEACH THE IMPEACHMENT!" Now, I don't know if the liberal use of all caps and exclamation points has ever overturned a political decision as weighty as an impeachment, but I'm guessing it still hasn't. And no, Madame President was not wearing a tie in those photos; the tie belongs to our very own Rep. Raul Ruiz, who, along with Rep. Tony Cardenas, are pictured in session debating the slow motion train wreck that is the GOP's replacement of the ACA. Stay hydrated, gents!
Thursday, March 9, 2017
There's still a lot of election post mortem happening on A1, but the front page gods were also kind enough to provide a photo of the "Fearless Girl" statue that's currently occupying Wall Street. Oh, and one other small thing to factor in: I've been using my scant free time these days to catch up on Game of Thrones.