I return!

Man, I’m tired.

It was a fine con, did better than I was expecting on the cash front–enough so that splitting a room and a ride with somebody made it more than worth working the weekend.

The con itself was not terribly wild–no weird tales of Strange People, or peculiar commissions. In fact, unusually, I got two commissions from people to draw a larger version of a small section of a painting. That was kinda cool. One kid wanted the zombie goldfish on the slab from Gothbat. So I drew it, happily, and he was pleased with it, and went off. Later on, I saw his father in passing, who said “He’s been showing EVERYONE the zombie goldfish!” That was kinda charming. Lots of kids at the con, and while I’m not a kid person by any stretch, generally very well behaved.

Actually, the weird thing was…the beagle.

My buddy Carlota decided to take the backroads to Charlotte, and due to it being very early and a small confusion about whether Fayetteville was actually Charlotte or not, the two hour trip ran about five hours. But that was all okay. Touring the back roads of rural North Carolina was an experience. We passed a gravestone with black marble Mickey Mouse ears. You don’t see that on the interstate.

And then we came around this one corner, and there, loping down the road, was a beagle.

We swerved into the opposite lane to avoid the beagle, and–for reasons I cannot even guess at–the number “90” was painted on its side. (Or possibly shaved. It was definitely a 90, though.)

Carlota and I stared at each other, and then in the rear view mirror. The beagle trotted off. “Whaaaat?” we said. “Did you see–the number 90–?”

We considered this. Finally, I said “What worries me is that somewhere, there must be beagles 1 through 89…”

A beagle marathon? The beagle derby? Performance art by hillbillies who delight in beagle painting for the bafflement of passersby? This question plagued us for the rest of the con, and yet, the mystery of Number Ninety Beagle remains…

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