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The Black Sheep

fr ee ... fo like rt he Al B re ow st m of an hi 's d sl r ife ink s .

• a college newspaper that’s actually about college •

Volume 4, Issue 1 1/17/13 - 1/30/13

theblacksheeponline.com @blacksheep_isu

All Hail Overlord Bowman mitch vaginapun wrote this

Early last month President Bowman shocked ISU students and staff by announcing he is going to retire as soon as a replacement is found. Bowman initially stated that his motivation was his health, mentioning that although he is still currently a living god, he's starting to, "Sag it up a bit 'down there',” and according to a close source, wants to keep himself from dragging all over the ground. Bowman went on to assure students that he was not leaving ISU for another, prettier school and that he hadn't "Sandusky’d this mother up." Instead of living an easy life of retirement as many had assumed he would, Bowman has decided to pursue a less stressful career path than president of the university: The Supreme Overlord of ISU. The announcement was made over winter break shortly following the erection of a large statue of Supreme Overlord Bowman on the quad. This was followed by the erection of the statue’s large erection, which ejaculates fire every hour on the hour. Although many were surprised by Bowman’s fantastic, eternally fondly-remembered power grab, there were several warning signs. The most obvious of which was Bowman’s first action after announcing his retirement. Using a fake persona, he managed to convince thousands of students to gather on the quad, continually chanting, “BOWMAN!” over and over as his erection and power level grew. The crowd quickly diminished, however, after he screamed “I’VE NEVER EVEN SEEN DRAGON BALL Z!” and requested a new pair of pants be brought to him in the pouch of a kangaroo. In an interview with Diane Sawyer that was arranged by university staff members under threat of decapitation, the new Supreme Overlord had no remorse about his decision to kidnap and imprison ISU’s board members. “My doctor advised me that my job as president was too stressful and was detrimental to my health, but as Supreme Leader, there won’t be any stressful decisions for me to make,” Bowman said, wiping his immaculate bottom on the wrist of the manservant he was using as a footrest, “It’s a win-win, ya know? I get to do whatever I want, whenever I want.” “This is the least stressed I’ve ever been,” he added before

Blast from the Future: Al Bowman visits ISU in Fall 2013 Pile up some rubble and take a seat, the future's not looking bright.

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beckoning one of his personal assistants to carry his wife over to him so she could, “Check out how wicked-sweet this huge dookie is!” The Black Sheep learned the hard way that these threats are both true and vigorously enforced when we were requested to make an appearance with Supreme Leader Bowman, blessings be upon him, inside of his newly reconstructed, “Fort ‘Fort Watterson’ is a Dumb Name, Just Call it ‘Fort Bowman.’ Ya Know What, Just Make this Whole Thing the Fort Name. Yes, the Whole Thing, Damn it.” We asked him if he had anything he wanted to say directly to our readers, and his beautiful, perfectly sculpted lips had only one thing to say.

what'’s inside

Top 10: Al Bowman Memories Sometimes the fiction is stranger than truth.

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The message is as follows: “ATTENTION ILLINOIS STATE UNIVERSITY STUDENTS. THIS IS YOUR GOD, AL BOWMAN. FROM THIS POINT ON, THERE IS NO LONGER ANY TUTTION. INSTEAD, THERE WILL MERELY BE A MONTHLY REWARD PAYMENT TO ME OF $10,000, A SMALL PRICE FOR KEEPING YOU ALIVE. ALL UPRISING WILL BE MET WITH FORTUITOUS ASS PLAY.” Be wary, for our wonderful, incomparable Supreme Leader has surprisingly thick fingers.

New Years Resolutions Made Easy

Make this your best first seventeen days of January yet!

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contents

Questions? Comments? Compliments? Insults? info@theblacksheeponline.com

page 9

page 5: FROM THE STREETS What will you miss most about al bowman?

page 8: bartender of the week Jenna from Maggie Miley's loves her cat, Zeus, more than Christmas.

page 9: The Campus Smoking Ban: A Report

Table of

This is the chillest loophole we've ever seen, man.

page 10: 2013 Events to Enable Your Ego Scientific advancement, astronomical circumstances, and even religious doctrine – all things we can twist and turn into serving our own personal agendas.

pages 11: We Interview: Ryan North our chat with the self-described "final boss of the internet."

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! k e e W e h t f o c i P

Hey Al, remember me? I was that guy who got a picture taken with you on the quad at Festival ISU! I had the black shirt on, remember? I'll just assume you're smiling and nodding enthusiastically at this paper. We're all sad to see you go, you majestic leader of humankind. We always have a blast putting you in our articles; the whole campus knows you're a completely awesome, hard-working guy who cares about his job and his students, and your undeniable perfection has been a gold mine for us writers. All we have to do is put a ridiculous caricature of yourself in an article, and everything is instantly funnier. It's like a comedic Easy Button. “You know what this paragraph needs? Al Bowman saying 'dick shit sprinkles.'” And we're not in the business of turning down an easy joke, that'd be like a Jewish person turning down something that Jewish people are really fond of. Agh, see how hard this is without you? We'll miss you! Sevin Ketze and The Black Sheep staff

Meet The Staff campus manager Kevin Setze Editorial manager Kevin Setze Advertising Manager Kenneth Porter Writers Mike Atkins, Jeremy Ber Joe Ruskey, Tim Mackey, Kevin Setze, Kitty Poker photographer Tim Mackey distribution manager Jason Snyder Social media manager Isabella Yates

pr/Marketing TEAM Nicole Nesbitt, Zach Devore Jessica Findley, Dori Jones Amanda Steelman, Isabella Yates, Alyssa Janelle, Brett Donaghue campus director Quinn Myers owner Atish Doshi Founders Bryan Podell, Kurt Tribble, Atish Doshi, Brendan Bonham, HeatherJo Erickson, Jimmy DeBlasio, Jessica Sommers, Quinn Myers

Mirror mirror on the wall, who's the handsomest of them all?

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The

Top 10

theblacksheeponline.com

Al Bowman memories

10.) “I was showing my dad around on Family Weekend, and we ran into Al walking to his car. My dad recognized him and asked if he could get a picture of us. I was embarrassed, but Al was really friendly and put his arm around me, gave my hips a little squeeze and growled in my ear like a puma. He really made me feel welcome.” - Abby Glorp 9.) “I was running at the Rec and was out of breath, so I walked a lap to get my wind back. Suddenly somebody pushed me hard from behind and I found myself falling. When I looked up dazed from the track, Al was scowling down at me. ‘No fucking slackers at my school!’ When I get out of the hospital, I know I'm going to take exercise a lot more seriously. I kinda have to, if I ever want to walk again.” - Melissa Dick 8.) “My friends and I were leaving the Bone and we saw Al walking with his bodyguards. This kid passed us wearing one of those SWAG SWAG SWAG SWAG shirts, and Al whispers something to one of his guys, who then walks over and pounds the butt of his rifle into the kid's stomach. They hi-fived and kept on walking. The kid got his wind back after a couple minutes and was really excited that Al Bowman acknowledged him.” - Rick Millercoors 7.) “Al gave me one of his kidneys. Just showed up at my door yesterday, all pale and bloody and shaking, and handed it to me. What the hell am I gonna do with this?” - Bill Lemon

Blast from the Future:

Al Bowman visits ISU in Fall 2013 sevin ketze wrote this “I can still picture it in my head,” remarked former ISU President Al Bowman as he walked across the spot where the Bone Student Center once stood many months ago. “It was this big red brick building, and...well, I guess that's all.” He turned around and gestured toward what was formerly known as Milner Library, now called “The Cocaine and Sex Castle” after being captured by a grizzled band of Albanian pirates. “This was where we used to keep books and computers and shit.” He paused for a long time before composing himself. “Here, you'll need these.” His burly assistant handed me a gas mask and a lead vest. “Let's go to the quad and check out those crazy-ass mutant squirrels.” As we walked, he regaled me with stories of years almost past. “Over here's where the RSOs all used to set up their bake sale tables. Now this land all belongs to the Great Mother Wolf. We'd better hurry across so she doesn't take offense. And over yonder, there used to be a building where the whole front was made of glass. I never learned what that building was for but it was hella cool looking.” A few students limped by, carrying books and similarly dressed in gas masks and body armor. One of them collapsed, but the others kept on walking. I reached to help him, but Bowman pulled me away. “There's nothing that can be done for him. Come, we must keep moving, The Hour of the Choosing is almost upon us. If you're still out here when the Warchief's horn sounds, not even God himself can save you.” We finally stopped in front of a lavishly decorated building, completely covered by a massive plastic dome. “This used to be our Student Fitness Center.” A tear slid down his cheek. “I spent years selling vacuums door-to-door raising money, and labored six nights a week with only a shovel and a hammer to create this, thinking it would be my legacy, my greatest accomplishment. But now it's the palace of the new president, who let my school become...” he gestured vaguely, “...well, this. He hoards every penny of tuition and grant money to spend on himself, and is rarely seen except when he appears on his balcony to laugh and jeer at the dead and dying. Basically, the guy's a dick.” A nearby lightpost flickered and went out. “We need to go,” Bowman said with a tone of urgency. I looked around, but couldn't see anything at all through all the smoke and gas. “Go where? Which way did we even come from?” I was starting to panic. Bowman reached down into pants and pulled out a handgun. He studied the sky for an instant, then fired into it. He extended his hand towards mine, and at the moment I grasped it, both of us were yanked upwards. As the grappling hook pulled us higher and higher, I gazed down in amazement at the magma rivers and puppy graveyards that covered the land my school stood on only six months ago. “Wow,” I said to Al, as we sat down with blankets and cocoa in front of his helicopter fireplace, “you're just like Batman.” “Close...” he said, with a familiar twinkle in his eye. “Batman's just like me.”

6.) “I got to sit in on the yearly recruitment/admissions meeting for a politics class, and somebody brought up the gender balance. ‘We've got three female students for every two males, what are we going to do about that?’ Al just grins and tents his fingers and says, ‘We're gonna find some more chicks.’ Such a bro.” - Pierre Chu 5.) “I went to the Bowmans' house for dinner with SGA, and when I shook Al's hand, there was a little POP and my palm felt like it was burning. Turns out he hid one of those crappy little Drop-Popz things in his hand. I asked later 'Didn't that hurt you too?' and he smiles and shows me his palm, which is completely coated in this gross, thick scar tissue. I guess he does that a lot.” - Karl Loaf 4). “This one time at a football game, I saw Al speed-walking over to the cheerleaders, all frustrated and waving his arms to get them to stop. He shooed them off the field and then turned to face the bleachers alone, and led the crowd in a call-and-response ‘CAN I GET A HELL YEAH?’ cheer for 40 straight minutes. The game ended when they were 10 minutes into the cheer, but Al just kept on going.” - Arlandria Foop 3.) “Back when Bowman was just a speech path professor, I was feeling a little unsure of myself and my grades, so I went to his office to ask for some advice. I let it all out for ten minutes, and then he put a hand on my shoulder, looked me right in the eye, and said ‘Becky... why don't you try not being a little bitch all the time?’ It changed my life.” - Becky Dirtywater 2.) “Last year, I walked into the bathroom in Edwards to find Bowman smearing shit on the walls and mirror. I asked why, and without turning to face me, he just said ‘Because they'd never expect it.’” - Manny Clipclop 1.) “We were tossing a frisbee around on the quad, and I noticed Al Bowman and his posse walking by. He glances over, drops all his shit and just starts sprinting. Half a second later, he dives and rolls a few times on the glass, and when he stops the frisbee is between his teeth. My friend told me afterward that Bowman slapped the frisbee into his hands, and said ‘Gimme a call if you jokers ever wanna get serious.’” - Tom Peters

Sevin Ketze wrote this


From the Streets

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Got a question you want us to ask? FTS@theblacksheeponline.com

What Will You Miss Most About Al Bowman? "He was a righteous dude. For sure." - Cassandra P., Sophomore

"His kindness towards all. The way you'd always see him around campus was really cool." - Amber W., Junior

"His generosity was astounding. He was more generous than most presidents." - David H., Freshman

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theblacksheeponline.com

bartender of the week Jenna F. maggie miley's Major: Special Education

What’s your favorite holiday: Christmas, I like spending time with my family.

Status: Involved Who’s your favorite super hero: Batman, he’s what I call BA.

You’re attacked by bees, what’s your first move: Jump in water, bees hate water with a fierce passion.

If you could fight any US President, who would it be and why: George Washington, because why not?

What was your favorite TV show growing up: I always liked The Real World because I wasn’t allowed to watch it.

What’s your favorite drink: Fat Tire

Who would win in a fight, a bear or a snake: Be descriptive. The bear would stomp the snake like the Hulk and then roast it over a small flame. Then he would eat it with his skirt-loving girlfriend while the sun sets.

What sports do you like: Basketball and Football You can bring 4 things to a desert island, what are they: A canteen for water, a hat for shade, Chap Stick for lip moistening and a machete for protection Where’s the craziest place you’ve ever hooked up: The water park

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New Year's Resolutions Made Easy scoop chang wrote this You’re overweight, socially awkward, and your grade point average is lower than a flexible midget’s limbo stick. But this year everything’s going to be different! You have your New Year’s resolutions, and this time you’re sticking to them. Thankfully, you’ve got The Black Sheep to help. Obviously as a fat, stupid loser, you can’t accomplish these goals on your own. But follow these simple steps and you’ll be smarter, thinner, and more popular than the winner of a midget limbo competition. Everyone is fat. You’re fat, we’re fat, everyone’s fat. We live in America, the country where we shovel enough grease down our gullet every day to fuel an exquisite, slippery orgy. So with that in mind, you want to lose weight. It was proven by Jesus’ less famous brother Carl Christ that dieting is not the solution. If you eat less, then your body has less energy with which to frolic. As we all know, frolicking is the best way to lose weight, as the happiness chemicals mix with the fat to create protein beasts that grind obesity into a fine powder. Need an even faster way to lose weight? Try cutting off body parts! You want to lose forty pounds quick? Chop off your left arm. What kind of pussy needs two arms anyway? “Jerry can you give me a hand with this TV?” Imagine the look on his face when you toss your bleeding, severed arm on top of the TV with a hearty chuckle. So, you’re socially awkward. You have no friends, you never go out, and you cry and/or masturbate into your Pillow Pet unicorn at night wondering why everyone hates you. It’s ok, we all do it. As writers, our only consolation is handing out newspapers and staring intently at readers, hoping they’ll let out a chuckle. We stay awake late into the night dreaming about your sweet, sweet laughter... like marmalade on a honey crisp apple. The best way to be socially awesome is practice. You’re a stupid, ugly loser because that’s all you’ve ever been, but with practice you can be as well spoken as the late Billy Mays. Start by singing to an audience of stuffed animals. Start small, because a flock of Paddington bears can be pretty intimidating at first. Slowly increase your audience: find old, headless dolls in the trash and lay them on your bed to watch you perform, they won’t judge you like everyone else does. Now you’re ready for real people. Go on the street and tell people you have an emergency and you desperately need their help. Drag them up to your room and lock the door. They might try to escape at first, but just start belting your heart out. They'll be so impressed that they'll forever love you and become your best friend forever. It’s foolproof.

The campus smoking ban: a report Isaac Dreidelschleitze wrote this

You got your final grades back and they were grim. You got a D or two, lost your scholarship, and got kicked off the interpretive dance team. Don't worry, we have the solution! Stop sleeping. You see, sleep is just what society wants you to do, but if you do some research, scientists don’t even know why we sleep! So why do it? Is it because you want to be cool? You want to get down, hip, and funky fresh, just because all the cool kids are doing it? NO. At first your body will resist, but buy caffeine pills and just take one every few hours to stay pumped. After a while, you’ll wonder how you ever used to keep your eyes closed for that long. Spend all of this extra time looking up ways to plagiarize papers and cheat without getting caught, so you can succeed in school the same way everybody else does Look at you now, you’re a sexy, legless, socialite with the highest GPA at Illinois State! All thanks to the wonderful folks at The Black Sheep. You’re a better person now than anyone you know and no man can equal your majesty. We recommend screaming insults at yourself in the mirror to stay grounded, you don’t want to act all cocky and have people think you’re weird. And hey… you’re welcome.

Hello there students! Isaac here with another straight-laced journalistic masterpiece for you all to salivate over as you sip your morning cup of hot Powerade. Many ISU students are in outrage over the latest rule put forth by “the fuzz,” as they often refer to the fine constables who police our lovely campus. The new rule states that there is to be no smoking anywhere on campus, not 15 feet from a building, not under your coat, not even doing that thing where you put two fingers up to your mouth when it’s cold out and pretend you’re smoking. My dearest editor decided this is a good opportunity to interview several of our fellow classmates, and sent me, the best interviewer on staff, to see how they feel about this rule. I suited up, grabbed a Five-Star notebook and began walking through the now smoke-free campus of Illinois State University. It didn’t look smoke-free at all! In fact, I saw several large clouds of smoke scattered along the quad. I approached one of them and suddenly remembered the Rick Springfield concert I had attended this previous summer. “Huh…it smells like skunk or…something like that,” I thought to myself. When I finally made it to the center of the smoke, I discovered several of my classmates sitting in a circle around several drums and guitars as well as what appeared to be makeshift cigarettes rolled by hand. “Excuse me! You can’t smoke on campus anymore! Don’t you read your @ilstu e-mails?” I grabbed the cigarette from a young lady with long hair and a Dave Matthews Band shirt and threw it as hard as I could towards the garbage. “ALL OF YOU ARE BREAKING THE LAAAAWWWW!” “Dude…are you like…the fuzz or some shit?” A similarly weary gentleman approached me with his eyes mostly closed and he appeared to be intoxicated. “Get away from me, you vagrant!” I covered my face in a defensive stance. “Dude, we just wanna chill with you, come on, sit down and play this drum, you’ll love it.” “I can’t! It’s against university policy to smoke on campus!”

“Nah bro, the e-mail said no smoking on campus, but everybody knows that just means cigarettes. These here aren’t cigarettes. These are all natural. It’s cool, don’t worry.” “All natural?” I grabbed the faux-cigarette from his hand and held it up to my nose. “It smells…I’m not sure what it smells like, I just know I like it.” “Yeah dude! Take a puff, you’ll feel even better.” I followed his advice and inhaled the substance. Suddenly I felt as though I were no longer concerned with the law or the journalistic masterpiece I needed to write for The Black Sheep. I just wanted to chill out and listen to 30 minute Phish ballads with these dudes. “Hell yeah, Isaac!” My pants were now off and I was running around the quad with a hula-hoop and dancing to the beat of the drums in the drum circle. Suddenly I received a text from my editor: Articles due by 6pm tonight. That means you, Isaac. Holy shit! I had to finish the article. I got out my notebook and began to write a few sentences while I listened to the others retell stories of when they got “so high they saw God.” It was awesome. They started ripping pieces of paper out of my notebook and rolling weed into them—then smoking them. I had to try this. I took a puff and laid back, and it started to feel really really... “Sir? Sir! Are you okay?” A man on a horse approached me as I opened my eyes. I was still on the quad, only it was dark. My friends were nowhere to be found and neither were my pants or my article for The Black Sheep. “We’re going to have to take you down to the station. Come on son, hop on my horse.” I did as the fine policeman said, and we galloped away to the nearest police station... which is where I'm writing from. If you're reading this, I would reeeeally appreciate like 50 bucks for bail. Thanks bro!


s t n e v e 3 1 0 2 enable your ego to

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by: quinn

DA14 The Western World’s First Gene Therapy Goes on Sale The Event: Dutch biotech uniQure’s Glybera will become commercially available, providing gene therapy to treat lipoprotein lipase deficiency (LPLD), an extremely rare inherited disorder affecting the metabolism of fat particles. How can we selfishly make this about us?: Gene therapy might just be the future of medicine as we know it. It physically alters the fundamental material that tells our cells how to function, and could potentially provide cures to some of humankind’s most detrimental diseases. But we’re not quite there yet, so who cares? Just like global warming, we should spend more time arguing whether or not humans should tinker with God’s creation. In fact, until uniQure can replace our short, fat, and brunette genes, let’s not give a shit about it. In other words, if a man was born to die of LPLD, then that’s what he was put on this Earth to do… until we can alter our genes to have powerful sex organs, then we shall not agree with uniQure and its evil plans to white-wash America.

Royal Baby Born The Event: Kate Middleton and whichever royal breeder is plugging her are passing on their blessed genes! Surely this baby will be left to grow up in a private, loving home like the rest of us, it won't throw itself off of the London Bridge at the ripe age of 14 on national television! How can we selfishly make this about us?: How dare we suggest that someone else's baby isn't primarily about us in the first place? This baby is will be a real life princess or prince! Our generation barely knew Princess Diana, and now we have our chance to become psychotically possessive of someone else's life. This baby is ours, America, and if we can't destroy the English monarchy with war, we shall tear it down by shoving our fat faces into every aspect of this baby's life. We will vote on the baby's name (deeming him/her Oprah no matter what), witness his/her first kiss, and ultimately steer the royal family back to what they do best have sex with each other until years of incest rot away their genetic makeup.

The Event: On February 15, 2013, the DA14 asteroid is predicted to narrowly sweep past Earth. The 45-meter, 130,000 metric ton asteroid will blow by us at 21, 200 miles from the center-point of Earth, with an uncertainty region of about 0.000001 AU (150 km; 93 mi). How can we selfishly make this about us?:"Uncertainty region" is certainly a sexy term. In this random universe anything can happen, and we feeble humans just have to bend over, grab our ankles, and take it. Might this near-Earth asteroid randomly be coerced by unknown forces of the universe, and take a path to knock Earth of its axis, killing us all? Or will Jesus whisk off into space on a silver surfboard and push it away? Only time can tell, but one thing's for sure - you want to make sure everyone within your online social reach knows that you know the asteroid isn't going to hit (because of science or surfboard Jesus)… but you're going to party like it is AnYwAy!~! #DA14 #NearDeath #JesusPushedtheAsteroidAway

The Wide Commercial Use of Highly Flexible Touch Sensors The Event: 2013 is predicted to be the year we start to see our computing technology evolve to be flexible with a phone that wraps around your wrist as the desired endpoint. How can we selfishly make this about us?: Our grandparents would never have dreamed of carrying the sort of computing power we do in their pockets. Yet, how do we respond to having an infinite amount of information at our fingertips? Immediately start complaining about the Facebook app loading too slowly, or carelessly dropping it into on the ground as we stream porn in the bathroom stall at work. Of course we'll welcome our computers being able to bend into a wrist accessory, but we'll all inevitably grow bored with this groundbreaking technology and wonder why the computer is still a physical thing, and not a chip implanted into our brain. Why do we have to still look at something to watch porn? Why aren't we to the point where we can stream it on the back of my eyelids yet!? We thought this was 2013, not 2003!

Solar Flares Will Disrupt the Earth's Magnetosphere The Event: The sun will reach its solar maximum this year - the period of greatest activity in its 11-year solar cycle. Because of the low level of activity in recent years there is a build up of energy, with large "solar storms" hitting Earth's magnetosphere strong enough to disrupt electronic systems on Earth. How can we selfishly make this about us?: Despite the fact that the solar flares could potentially alter the banking system and hospital equipment, we'll all inevitably complain more about our phone batteries not charging as we sleep, and GPS devices leading us to Taco Bell instead of the nearest strip club. Sure, we could take this phenomenon to realize there are bigger external forces that alter our lives than WiFi and sex, becoming a little less dependent on our machines and a little more interested in the frailty of human life and our relationships. But we won't, and our faces will stay glued to our phones as we mash the refresh button like apes until the internet checks back in.


we interview: We interviewed Ryan North, creator of the online Dinosaur Comics, writer of Adventure Time comics, and eventually a choose-your-own-adventure Hamlet book. He is the self-described “final boss of the internet,” so follow him on Twitter @ryanqnorth! By Brendan The Black Sheep: So you went to college for Computer Science, did you start the comic out of college or in college? Ryan North: I did undergrad in Computer Science and started the Dinosaur Comics in my final year. Then I did a graduate degree in computation linguistics, and continued the comic during that time. When I graduated I had the choice of getting a real job or doing comics on the internet, and the internet comic thing seemed like it would be more fun. TBS: With that in mind, what was the decision like -- did you understand the risk, did you look at it as kind of "this is my one shot to do this"? RN: Yeah, actually it was a really easy decision, because when a cartoonist decides to go full time that means they have to quit their day job, but all I had to do was fail to get a job. It was easy because the easiest choice was the most fun choice. TBS: Since then you've branched out to a bunch of different things -- designing other web comics and other projects. When you go after these things, how do you choose to do it? RN: It takes me about three hours to write a comic, which seems like a lot for six panels, but it takes that long to get to the point where I'm happy with it. So when I started doing comics full time, I’d be done around noon, and have the whole afternoon off - so I was like, “Yeah! Spring break full time!” But after a couple weeks of that, I started to be like "Oh no, I'm wasting my life.” But Oh No Robot came out of me saying “Wow! This is something that can solve a problem for web comics, and something I can do in the afternoon that would be computer science-y,” which I enjoyed also - you know, helping out both myself and other cartoonists. So seeing something that could be done better and doing it, but also selfishly just needing to feel more productive than I am. TBS: Dinosaur Comics, do you find the 6 panels are a continual challenge? RN: In one sense it's like a haiku, where you have these constructions and you work within it - and that gives you some advantages, like you're not facing a blank sheet of paper in the morning. I know my comic today will probably have T-Rex in it to some degree, because it's always those same six images, but at the same time you're thinking how can you spend ten years with the same six images, this is brutal, it's reptilian. But they're really flexible, which is great -- if I put "Meanwhile in Tudor England" above one of the panels, that changes the visual narrative of the strip and it starts telling different stories and having characters off panel that interact with the main characters, which makes it flexible, and seemingly easier. TBS: The Adventure Time comic is very stylistically different from what you've been doing, how do you switch voices between the two? RN: I think it helps that the characters from each comic like T-Rex from Dinosaur Comics and Jake from

the big three

entertainment-y things to keep your eye out for.

broken city In Theaters January 18th

Hey, it's a Mark Wahlberg action film! Russell Crowe stars as the mayor of New York City, a man who hires Wahlberg (a disgraced ex-cop with an innate anger problem) to help him identify his wife's lover, that bitch. Scandalous situations simmer up, supposedly surrounding sex and stuff.

toro y moi - anything in return out January 22nd

Chaz Bundwick, better known as Toro y Moi, graces us yet again with his low key dance beats on Anything in Return. Bundwick describes his latest album as just him having fun, music that his "girlfriend would dance to, or something." Yeah, guys, or something, so let's keep the vibes chill around here, okay?

africa January 22nd at 10p.m. on discovery

From the makers of Planet Earth, Frozen Planet and Life comes another epic documentary that shows us that rhinos and giraffes really do live complex, interesting lives outside of the zoo. The third installment of the seven part series shows us the country of Congo, and how life is, like, real in the rain forest.

ryan north Adventure Time, are very distinct characters with really clear voices, so it's not hard to write them. You know it's not like I sit down and I say, “Alright here's a funny joke, now is it a T-Rex joke or is this a Finn and Jake joke?” It's more, I'm writing for Finn and Jake and then suggest the different sorts of jokes for each character. TBS: Moving onto your Kickstarter project To Be or Not To Be: That is the Adventure choose your own adventure play on Hamlet that blew up, what was the inspiration behind that? RN: It was totally the title that caught me - because I thought "Wow, that's structured like a choice, like in those little choose your adventure books!” Then I thought “Oh my gosh, I have to write this." And there is a lot in Hamlet that is well suited for the adventure book format - he has a very clear goal to kill the bad guy, and when you do the story is over. And there’re other easy translations like the play within a play easily becomes a book within a book. TBS: The Kickstarter campaign raised a bunch of money, why do that instead of going to a publisher? RN: The thing with going to a publisher is you have to say, "Hey Mr. publisher I've written this chooseyour-own path version of Hamlet, so stay with me it's going to be great, but I want every ending illustrated and it's going to cost you thousands of dollars to print this. But trust me it will be really cool!" which a lot of publishers won't go for. But you go to Kickstarter and say the same thing, and only ask that people put up $20 and get the book, and you can watch it grow. We started with just black and white book with a thirty pictures, but as we made more money it became full color with over 110 pictures. So it let the book be better than what it would've otherwise been, which I think is a really powerful thing. TBS: One of the over-arching things that have been in this conversation has been you betting on yourself and winning - have you experienced and large-scale setbacks? RN: There is a truism of writing that says, "If you want to write something good you have to write a bunch of bad things first and get them out of your system," but I feel what's actually happening is that your initial writing will be bad - like if you look at the first couple years of Dinosaur Comics, I wouldn't put those comics online now because I wouldn't be happy with them. Like, when I put the first comic out, it was just me and my mom reading the comic -- and then my mom stopped -- I feel like if I had the objective measure to say "Is this a successful comic?" Well for the first couple years it wasn't! But I wasn't doing it for the success I was doing it because I enjoyed writing a comic and I wanted to see what I could do with it. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't. That doesn’t mean it's a failure and you have to move onto the next thing - it means "Well, that didn't work, we learned something from this, and we better adapted, or learned the lessons we learned to do something new" I feel like labeling your different projects as failures or not failures is a little bit harsh, and sort of writes off the failure stuff, when really there is something good in there that you can recycle and make into something better.


the madlib: back to school It seems like it was just yesterday you were packing up your things and heading back to __1__ to enjoy a month-long break. You were determined to relax, promising yourself that you’d __2__ one __3__ every day you were home. Well, that didn’t happen. First your __4__ began berating you for showing up at home with so much __5__. Doesn’t she understand that it’s really expensive to do it at school? Then your __6__ asked why you reek of __7__, like there’s a good way to answer that question in front of the parents.

Deciding you need a break from all that nonsense, you head over __8__’s house, knowing he’ll be down to __9__ some __10__. You walk into his house and the whole family is sobbing; apparently his __11__suddenly __12__. Now you’re telling him everything is going to be __13__, but you really, really just want to go to __14__ and __15__. Of course things continue to get worse. A few days later you find out that __16__, the ex- you still quietly lust over, is now dating __17__. You still despise __18__ for __19__ on your __20__ as a joke your __21__year of high

school. Nothing really got worse through Christmas, but New Year’s saw the ultimate shitstorm come crashing ashore. After __22__ ditched you at a __23__ you decided to head home. When you walked in you heard a shriek. A naked, quivering mass of flesh was on the couch. It was your __24__, with __25__ on top. Then, on top of both of them was a __26__. You immediately started __27__ and __28__, though you’re not sure which one came first. So yeah, thank god you’re back at school.

1) Your hometown 2) Verb 3) Noun 4) Female family member 5) Noun 6) Different family member than 4 7) Libation 8) Male friend’s name 9) Verb 10) Noun 11) Pet 12) Verb (past tense) 13) Adjective 14) Location

15) Verb 16) Name 17) Name of nemesis 18) Same as 16 19) Verb (-ing) 20) Body part 21)Year in high school 22) Name 23) Inopportune location 24) Family member 25) Family member 26) Animal 27) Verb (-ing) 28) Verb (-ing)

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Illinois State - Issue 1 - 1/17/2013