So roughly a week ago, I learn that the neighbor's dog has gone missing. The next 48 hours would next prove to be some of the most harrowing, terrifying and most grotesque I have experienced in my short lifetime.
A stench soon wreaked out from under the patio. This is not uncommon. Living in florida and having a patio with a wooden floor that is easily tunneled under means lots of animals heaving their wretched fleshy poop bodies underneath and coughing out a final death wheeze.
But this was a more pungent stench. Richer. Meatier. Clearly the dog. I'm no fan of dogs crawling in my yard, shitting on my stuff and peeing where they like to mark off their snotty territory. So I didnt really feel too bad that it's dead.
My birds weren't fans of the stench either.
Within the next 48 hours, a flea living on the dead dog succeeded in getting itself knocked up, and laid a few hundred eggs under the patio. These eggs hatched into a coven of wretched insects that soon grew to full size and desired blood to feed their empty bellies. I realized this as I went out to feed my birds. For I was not standing upon the wooden floorboards of the patio for a minute, when a black puddle seeped through the planks. This puddle was not a liquid but a solid, and the solid was not a solid, but hundreds of fleas, clinging to each other, like plankton, to create a larger fiercer animal. As soon as they smelled the arteries in my leg, they pounced, like a tiny army of Huns on the Great Wall of Me.
"Oh shit" I shouted as I kicked my legs like a Las Vegas dancer. With a few leaps I was soon inside the house, slapping my own legs, knocking the assailants off onto the kitchen floor. Now they were inside the house, and no sooner had they hit the floor when with tiny perfect unevolved legs, they were flinging their flat bean bodies back onto my legs, greedily sucking at the blood.
When they were all off I ran from the kitchen and called the exterminator.
2 days later, a large Winnebago adorned with green stripes was outside. It sat for 30 minutes unmoving. Finally, a hunched over old man exited the monstrous vehicle. His squat legs gingerly hitting pavement, and then quickly scuttling, carrying his aged body to the door where I greeted him. He was dressed in but a long sleeve dress shirt, dress pants, galoshes, and a tie. On his face he wore a large old gasmask. On his back was a tank and in his hand was a gun. He noted that the tank was filled with pesticides and hormone inhibitors. Two things that are best for destroying flea populations. Genocide in a can. So as I went to work, he got to work, going room to room spraying this horrid yellow spray. By the time I was back he, and his vehicle of chemicals, had gone. And so apparently, had the majority of the fleas. It would take several days for the chemicals to kill them all. Last night I stalked the house in the dead of night, with my legs exposed. The bodies of many dead bugs lay about the walls. Roaches, spiders, silverfish, june bugs. Common Floridian bugs. No fleas in sight. No leaping, no biting. No fleas. Until I got to the kitchen. And there were fleas. Maybe 7 of them. They were not right in the head. Spinning in circles, convulsing, leaping half-heartedly. A few tried jumping onto my foot. I quickly grabbed them and ground them up in the tile grout.
It was quite satisfying to say the least.
hum dee dum dee doo.
An acquaintance of mine, and a fellow animator got hired by a local studio recently. I get the same feeling I do when I see my old schoolmates at work. Some are in suits. Some are married. It's like jealousy, I suppose. But it's coupled with frustration.
Seeing this acquaintance get hired is disheartening and joyous all at once. Having known him for quite a while. Watching his skills improve drastically over the years. Watching his personality seemingly do a complete 180. Far more talented than I could hope to be. And far more bitter than I hope never to be.
I wonder if thats why my own skills havent improved. I wonder if my subconscious knows something I dont. It seems as though the animation community right now is this neverending war of mudslinging and retro bullshit.
It's a downer to be sure.
Not even the fleas were able to wreck my pleased mood.
Why am I pleased, you may ask? Because I have finally done something I've needed to do for a long, long time.
I have made a demo reel. It's short, for a couple of reasons. For one, alot of my stuff I can't bear watching and while it may have been good for when it was made, alot of it is garbage now. Secondly, the recording software lags when too much happens on the screen at once. Which means I had to cut out alot of my best bits. I could only include a few tiny bits of Squaresville and of the unreleased Polypeptide. And the bits of Clownshow that got in are sadly missing like every other frame, which really wrecks the smoothness.
But its the best I can do with this pc. At least I tried. And honestly, despite all the missing frames, lag, and other things wrong with it, it came out pretty nice.
Overall, I am very pleased. Perhaps one day I can make a nicer version. But until then, my current Reel will have to do. How I wish I had some of my hand-drawn traditional animation from college, so that my reel wasn't just full of flash stuff. But all those old cel animations are dead and gone. Lost forever. Bah!
Well here it is. Since Blogger now has a video hosting option, I assume its alot sharper and better looking than Youtube. The Youtube version of my reel looks...well...kinda like a dead bloated cat on the side of the road.
And there it is. Slightly more than a minute long. For the 4-6 people who read this little blog, and are curious what the tune in it is, it is Fossils, from Camille Saint-Saens "Carnival of the Animals Suite"
Saint-Saens remains one of the best unsung composers mankind has ever produced. Rarely making long songs that drone on for hours, his work is mainly comprised of shorter tunes that focused it seems, more on catchy melodies. I've used rather alot of his music in various cartoons.
Why am I talking about Camille Saint-Saens when there are more important things to talk about.
For example: Charlton Heston is dead. He's in heaven right now, shooting at angels and gurgling gruffly to himself.
Sunday Night Call
9 hours ago