And we’re back to guest art!  This incredible illustration is from Jami(e) Naguchi of Angry Zen Master, one of the regulars at our Washington Webtoonists group.

So, of course, I wrote this one in a restaurant.  I did it as a clipless script, sprung almost fully-formed after a server at another table said the “is Pepsi okay?” line.  I did tweak it a lot.

When I passed the script and description to Jami, I said:

The scene is a restaurant.  A married couple in their early 50s is at a table and a waitress is taking their order.  The waitress looks slightly perplexed and taken aback, looking at the husband.  The wife is looking at the waitress, and seems a bit weary.  The husband is the key comic figure.  He is in a dinner jacket, no tie, hair just slightly out of place…and a crazed and distant look in his eyes…pleading, desperate, maybe a little bloodshot.  He’s looking at the waitress, but kind of looking through her.

Now, I love this art and it fit the script and description of what I wanted beautifully.  But Jami made a surprising (to me) choice of having this be an interracial couple.  That’s great, because it’s something you NEVER see in a clip art collection.

But it does draw some focus away from the crux of the joke, I worry.  In the end it has no bearing on the gag that this man is African-American.  It’s beside the point, which is good for its own reasons, I suppose.  But is the reader left wondering at the end if there is a tie-in?  If you were, there isn’t.

But just to make sure there was no such connection implied, I made one change to the script.  ”Satan’s unholy veins” was originally scripted “Satan’s black veins.”