Thursday, January 28, 2010

Wednesday, January 27, 2010


It's amazing how many men love watching football with their friends. Recently, I was a supper guest and got trapped into watching a football game with a die-hard fan who was relentless in his idea that I was the least bit interested in his team. Happily, his team eventually lost, so both of our weekends were equally ruined. I'm pretty sure he cried a little. He did sulk a lot. I actually laughed out loud when his daughter ran up to the TV and put in her Disney Princess-related movie when he left the room for another beer. He never noticed. Then it hit me. Synchronicity. My friend was a football fag.
Here is a checklist of facts about football that may help in determining just how gay you and your friends are about the sport:
1) Half the game is spent watching adult men bent over in a tight line.
2) The quarterback begins each down by reaching forward under another man's ass for a 'good center.'
3) Positions include names like 'wide receiver,' 'tight end,' and 'full back.'
4) Men are brought to the ground by violent hugs called 'tackling.'
5) Bright and shiny team uniforms that all match.
6) John Madden talking longingly about Brett Favre's stats. No matter what game he is announcing.
7) The squirting of the Gatorade.
8) Fans wear the uniforms of other men and get excited that they have their names and numbers on them for all to see.
9) Sundays spent sitting on a couch with other men watching other men instead of making love to the wife for hours or taking the kids to the zoo or Grandma's house.
10) The decoration of a room in matching team colors and images pre-approved by a faceless committee. Then meeting there with other special members who like to dress in a manner that matches the team curtains. Very Hello Kitty.
11) The clapping and hooting when someone does a victory dance for his team. Behold, the male pole dancer.
12) The team pennant and decorative towel. Man hankies.
13) The group cuddle known as 'the huddle.'
14) Eating hot dogs whle watching football.
15) Collecting little photos of other men in matching outfits and placing them in protective slip cases.
16) Showing off your collection of little man-photos in 'sequential career order' to your man-friends in a dimly lit basement 'man-cave.'
17) Admitting that you'd actually consider doing Howie Long "IF" you were gay.
18) Getting excited when your team 'takes it up the middle' or 'completes a pass' to another player.
19) John Madden and Brett Favre are married and ride around the country in a big love-bus together.
20) Terry Bradshaw's tooth.
21) Defensive players are encouraged to 'sack' the quarterback or at least get him 'in the grasp.'
22) Doing a belly bump.
23) Screaming when another man 'puts it through the uprights.'
24) Punting.
25) Thinking about football on a Tuesday at work.
I could go on and on. Think about it. GAY!
Ok. There are a few of you out there who are hiding behind the fact that your wives or girlfriends are big football game watchers, too. HA! Review the list again, fella. If you were a girl, wouldn't these be great excuses for watching the big games?
Then there are the guys who talk with each other about the latest naked lady in Playboy and what they'd do with her if they ever got the chance. EVER GOT THE CHANCE. Ever.
Fantasy Football League. Disney Princesses. Either way, you come out of the closet dressed in someone else's clothes.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Thursday, January 21, 2010


Only 2.5 feet of wall display! (You should see the rest of the house.)

Holy Cow! I'm OCD!

I call it an "obsessive collecting disorder". My brother Tim, an antique dealer and fellow horder, calls it "having a weird eye". My sister Sharon calls it having a "messy house filled with junk". My sister Katti just likes stuff that you can put out on the porch.
Every time the sun shines beyond the thaw and garage sale signs return to roost once again, we set our alarm clocks to 6:30 AM. No open garage, auction house, yard sale or antique junk shop is safe around us. Our highly caffienated minds swear-to-god that inanimate objects call out to us like whores in port. "Hello, Daddy. That's it. Run your fingers around my edges. Pick me up in your warm knowing hands. Turn me over and inspect me. Look at my flawless condition. Turn me over. Yes. YES! You're the one I've been waiting for. See, my price is just for you. Take me home. I display very well. I promise to make your friends jealous. I love you long time!" The addiction swirls in our heads like the orgasmic brain fever of a heroin junky in a fix-heat. We sardonically watch other novice seekers pass treasures in plain view and roll our eyes while adding them to our baskets. Like a happy pentecostal hearing an unknown tongue, we are thankful that the gifts of interpretation and identification belong to us. Mental disorder or supernatural shopping power? Whatever it is = WE LOVE IT!
I can't remember a time when collecting something (or everything) was not a part of my life. I always love entertaining my friends with collections they will never see again in their lives. Sure, you can inherit a collection of depression glassware or Hummel figurines from Grandmother. You can hide away your collection of old fishing lures and Boy Scout equipment from Dad. But to build something that is a reflection of your own taste and decision - now that is a gift that you give to and from yourself.
There are times when I collect things based on my personal childhood connection and the memory of a better, simpler time. Other times I feel like I have to save certain items from total extinction because frankly, this generation doesn't give a shit about anything that didn't happen before Halo. Sometimes I find myself somewhere between the identity of a fanboy geek and that of a museum curator.
Recently during an interview I was asked about what I collect. When I began to reply I could see the interviewer's face evolve from amusement to belittlement...and then to complete horror and fear. I must have crossed a line somewhere.
When I stopped to allow him to catch his composure he shook his head slowly and took off his glasses with concern.
"Don't you think that you may be a little bit overboard in your collecting?"
"Nope!" Then I continued to blow him away with the rest of my list. He had asked the right guy the wrong question. I'm an artist. I'm interested in everything!
Then it happened. You should have seen his face when I hit on cereal boxes and premiums. Suddenly he started talking about how much he loved digging through the cereal for the prize inside the package. This led to his love of sports cards (yuck!) and his memories of flicker cards and Cracker Jack prizes at the movies on Saturday afternoons with his friends who he used to sneak into the movie house when the usher was distracted. Suddenly he remembered his first two-wheeled bike with the metallic purple banana seat and riding through the woods. His face became younger and his hands moved in a slow sacred motion as he talked. He began to smile and sway as if he were kissing that special girl again when kissing was all that you dared do. And you were completely drowning in it. Now I was amused.
A fellow cartooning pal was once so mad at me for selling off my collection of over 130+ Soaky bubble bath bottle toys that I thought he was going to cry. You'd have thought I raped his sister. Seriously! He didn't collect them but he loved knowing that I did and had so much to look at when he came to visit. When I told him how much I got for my collection his eyes got way pie-sized. I worked hard to build that collection and it in turn returned the favor by working for me. The circle of life. Unlike the stock market my fetish collection was paying me with blue chip dividends.
"Sometimes", I explained, "you just have to release your collection back into the wild."
There is an art to listening for the changing of the seasons when one collects. Some things you catch and release. Some you gather for resale. Others hold onto you for the duration of your life and move on to another generation who hopefully gets why. Whatever the reason you should enjoy the process.
Eventually our planet will become a big ball of fire and all of our collecting will have been in vain. Until then here is a partial list of things that still have my attention:
Pre-1980 cereal boxes and premiums, Chick Tracts, Tijuana Bibles, Happy Hollister books, Sideshow, Carnival and Amusement Park prizes and chalkware, old children's comicbooks, arcade machine cards, underground comics, pre-2001 Pokemon PVC figures (I don't play), paintings by street artists, Lucha Libre lobby cards, monster models, old bar humor shot glasses, joke books, children's figural plastic head character mugs, pre-1975 Casper products, biographies & autobiographies, Give A Show projectors, Soakys (I only have 16 these days), old comedy / Polka / Hawaiian music LPs, Big Little Books, Mold A Rama Sinclair dinosaur figures, WW2 ration books and propaganda, old paintboxes, Batman autographed photos, newspaper contest pinbacks, original Syroco cartoon character figures, Bonzo dogs, metal advertising premium spoons featuring figural logo and cartoon characters, German bisque comic strip character nodders, tent revival and circus posters and tie-in items....
Yeah. I definitely have a collector's disorder. But at least it has a resale value. It also makes me very happy. And if you're honest - it may have even helped you to dig up a few nostalgic inner treasures of your own. Feel free to email me with your pet collections and finds or catch me on the road. I do trades for my comics and art and sometimes even buy. I'm cheap but I do buy. Sometimes I just don't. Enjoy your disorder. Mine's a freakin' party!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Welcome To The Chris Yambar Show! 2.0

Behold Citizens. I have returned once again to the Blog Zone. I am here because many of you have expressed the need for solid direction and purpose in life and have asked me to provide it for you.
"What is the meaning of life?"
"Why am I so full of fear when I watch the News?"
"Will things ever get better for me or am I doomed to stay trapped in this hellish nightmare I jokingly call living?"
"Is it wrong as white man to watch COPS and Judge Joe Brown and laugh out loud?"
"Will they ever stop making holiday shows where someone has to save Christmas?"
"Is the age of reason and invention only motivated by a quick money grab updating of what is already here?"
"Is this enough salt to put down on the front walk or will some stupid idiot still manage to find a way to fall on their ass?"
"What's up with the Red Hulk?"
"Will Lost ever get to the point or is it a remake of The Prisoner?"
"Will Levi Krause ever leave his rotting, skunk-stinking, zombie-trailer and venture out to conventions to meet his fans or will he remain an intellectual, cigarette smoking, elitist snob?"
"How does the fat guy on Lost stay so damn fat when he's on the island?"
"Is this really what it sounds like when doves cry?"
I have the answers to all of these questions and many more.
But this really isn't about YOU is it? No it isn't. It's about what I think. What about my feelings, needs and desires? My obsessions and long-winded ponifications? My numerous collections of things that have little or no value in the eyes of those who will sell it off in a garage sale for pennies on the dollar when I am dead? My endless typos and misspellings? In 2010 it is MY chance to vent, fella.
Y'know, a lot of you have asked me about the true nature of The Chris Yambar Show. It's a mindset that helps me to realize that for this single magic moment I am the person in charge of who I am and what I accomplish. I am responsible for what I do, for what I create and what stands in the eyes of the world in my name. It also helps me to treat others who come my way as if they were my special guests - guest stars, if you will. There is no net on my show. Only danger and possibility. And coffee. Do I have answers to all the questions of life? Yes. Should I just give them out to everyone who asks? Nope. Only those who prove to seek for wisdom shall find it ...and if they are truly blessed, Wisdom will find them.
I am content with finding cognitive answers, not in trying to exist in an endless swirling black hole of important questions.
Random News: starting THIS weekend I will begin posting 2 new single-panel comics = FRESH FISH and B.S. The images will always stay the same but the captions will always change. How far can I take these captions? I will endeavor to be relentless. In time I may even release collected trades and T-Shirts. Perhaps a float in the Macy's Thanksgiving Parade.
In all fairness here are a few answers for you: "Yes." "No" "She's just not that into you, man." "Jesus Christ." "Paul Stanley." "Chocolate" "Spin again." "Lower, please." "Because Lost is a complete waste of precious life." "Yes, Virginia. There is a Chris Yambar." (You provide the questions. I'm not going to do all the work here!)