Ideas come when they come.

You might be wondering why I posted a strip about Halloween costumes on the day after Halloween. The answer is: "because I didn't get the idea for the strip until this morning and I had to crank like heck to get the comic done in time to post tonight." Please be gentle if there are more errors than usual.

Speaking of holidays, please let me take this opportunity to remind you about the Amazon Affiliate Program. If you click on the previous link, or the Amazon link on the side of my page and make any purchase, I'll get a cut without it costing you a dime extra. Even if you don't want to use my Affiliate link for your holiday shopping needs, please use the link provided by some other blogger or cartoonist, and if there's a blogger/cartoonist whose work you enjoy but they don't have an affiliate link, tell them to get one.

The third panel of that last strip.

A few people have voiced some confusion as to the meaning of the third panel of this strip. It is meant to be a kids book rendition of one of my favorite books, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas.

Here's the trailer for the excellent Terry Gilliam film adaptation.

The entire film can be seen on Hulu.

I did toy with a different book. Here are two of the ideas I was batting around:


"The first rule of friend club is, tell all your friends about friend club."

The Dark Tower of Tickles

"The man in black fled across the desert. The Gunslinger followed ... to tickle him."

I think I made the right choice.

Second Razor Review: The Goodfella

First, I'd like to thank all of you for sticking with me through the whole razor odyssey. I plan for this to be the last shaving-themed post, although the topic may come up again in the future.

Last time I reviewed the Azor, a cartridge razor from England (The U.K. The mother country. Across the pond. Old blighty. Tea town.) Today, I'm reviewing a totally different animal. The Goodfella, a deluxe safety razor made and supplied to me for review free of charge by Kiwishaver LTD, from New Zealand.

It is an extremely attractive piece of equipment. My first impression upon opening it was that it was surprisingly small, but small is not a bad thing. (Bet you're surprised to hear an American say that.)

The Goodfella claims no revolutionary technological advances. They don't say they've reinvented anything. Your grandfather could pick up the Goodfella and feel right at home with it. What the Goodfella does promise is a beautiful object, expertly crafted from the finest materials, that you will use every day, like an Eames chair, or an engraved revolver. (Bet you're not surprised to hear an American say that.)

As you can see, I was sent the two-tone model. It has a chrome handle and a satin-black head. It looks great. Makes the rest of my bathroom look shabby in comparison. Looking at the pictures on Kiwishaver's website, I feared the "G" logo on the head would be overbearing, but that's not the case in person. Like the other safety razors I've used, you load fresh blades into the Goodfella by unscrewing and dismantling it. The pieces fit tightly and reassemble solidly. The whole razor has that reassuring heft that only a device machined out of solid metal can provide. Kiwishaver offers a lifetime guarantee on the Goodfella, which shows a certain amount of confidence in their product.

As for using the Goodfella, it's a safety razor. An attractive safety razor, but a safety razor nonetheless. Using it is exactly like using any other safety razor, only better looking. As with all safety razors, if you put in the effort to learn the techniques needed, it will remove hair from your face just as quickly and effectively as a cartridge razor (if not more so). I'm not there yet. I'm getting great shaves out of this thing, but it is taking more time and care than a cartridge razor did. More practice is needed.

So, let's break it down into pros and cons.

The Pros:
High quality
Inexpensive refill blades
Lifetime guarantee

The Cons:
The handle is polished chrome with a few ridges to keep it from slipping. Seems like it could get kinda slick, but it hasn't so far, so take that for what it's worth.
The price

Oh, I hadn't mentioned the price yet? Right now they have a promotion where you get the Goodfella, twenty-five blades and two samples of Primal Earth Shave gel for ... $90 USD. Before the promotion, the price for the Goodfella and a five pack of blades was ... $90 USD.

The Goodfella is a beautifully made, high-quality item with a very practical use. It's designed to be the last razor you'll ever buy. One hundred years from now, your grandson may well find a Goodfella in an antique store, or a box in his attic, and if he does he'll be able to put a blade in it and start using it as if it was brand new.

You have to ask yourself if that's worth $90 to you.

Last rerun for a while (hopefully)

Posted another rerun tonight. As I stated in the title, I hope for it to be the last for a while. Thanks for your patience.

Ahem ...

I am now accepting orders for the holiday run of Infini-Tees. The price is unchanged from before, $15 for the artwork and $20ish or more for the shirt, depending on your preferences.

As before, you will receive the artwork and then be able to decide if you want to buy the shirt.

Also as before, I'll need a photo of the person you want pictured on the shirt facing the camera in the pose you want on the shirt (you should be wearing a t-shirt in the photo, and the photo should include your entire torso). The photo must be at least 1000 pixels wide. If you cannot get said photo without ruining the surprise, you can send me a good headshot of them, but be warned that I will have to graft their head onto someone else's torso, and the result will not be as good as if I had a full-torso photo of them.

Ordering will be kept open for at least one month, maybe more depending on the rate of orders. I just don't want to take more orders than I can fulfill before Christmas.

On a vaguely related note (in that it has to do with monetizing my comic) I have fielded a few complaints about my review of the Azor. Rest assured, I have no intention of turning my blog into some kind of biased version of Consumer Reports. That said, I have no qualms whatsoever about my review for the following reasons.

1. It came about organically. I posted a comic about my difficulty selecting a razor. I then blogged about the inspiration for the strip, and that blog post got a ton of comments. The traffic got the attention of two razor manufacturers, and they both ended up sending me a razor to evaluate. The review of the second razor will turn up next week. I'll mark it promenently as a review so you can easily skip it if you wish.

2. I gave the Azor a positive review because I was genuinely impressed with it.

3. I have never made a secret of the fact that someday I hope to make a living off of Basic Instructions. Unless you want PBS-style pledge breaks and begging, that means advertising, and if you look at the ads that run on my site (and almost all other webcomics) you'll see that they are almost all ads for videogames or other webcomics. Cartoonists need for the makers of other products to realize that our sites are a good way to put their ads in front of people's eyeballs. I have reputable companies interested in giving my site a tentative try, and I'm going to do whatever I can (without being dishonest) to encourage them.
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