Did you see this coming?  Yeah, you probably did.  But here he is, after his long, dramatic absence: Mike-One-Echo, looking more than a little bit the worse for wear.  But having been hit by a minimum of two atomic weapons in one day (and probably more, since he was at ground zero of the start of World War, er, Two) I guess I couldn’t expect him to look like he just rolled out of the factory.  And as for his line, I admit that it’s from one of my favorite, most underrated sci-fi movies, 2010: The Year We Make Contact, and is a reference to HAL-9000.  I mean, you expected as much.  At least he’s not singing “Daisy.”

So last week was a continuous blaze of work mixed with general economic crisis in New York City.  For those who don’t know, we had a slow-motion stock market crash over the past five days, throwing the nation’s financial situation into total disarray, and so now there’s real fear and panic among those who watch such things.  And yet, strangely enough, if you look at small businesses like there are in my neighborhood, you’d think everything was just fine.  The guy on the corner can’t cook burgers fast enough, a new shop opened down the street to sell ice cream to hot beachgoers… it’s weird.  Makes me wonder whether this is the start of a new, smaller-scale economy, being brought about by market forces.  For the sake of my neighbors, and my own desire to see capitalist microeconomics vindicated, I hope it is.  I’d also like to be able to make a living as a “local architect,” someday, though nothing of the kind now exists.  But we just have to wait and see.

As for the rest of it, the panic and a heavy deadline at work basically made me suspend all but the bare essentials of 6-Commando, i.e. the promised but still secret merchandise.  I limited it to sending out a few advance samples to certain individuals (if you’re reading this, guys, don’t spill it, but let me know if you got it or not, and how long it took!)  But I am still not licensed to sell them yet, so I have to just keep on that.  Hopefully I’ll be able to make time to file the proper paperwork this week.    Once that’s done, of course, the ensuing series of “things” will be a lot easier for me to send out and I have a number of them planned.  So stay tuned, and try to set aside a couple dollars (or Euros, Yen, Yuan, Rubles or whatever) to help support 6-Commando this summer!

Other than that, I’ve put the next full spread up on topwebcomics.com as a voting incentive, so by all means cast your votes and see it as it was meant to be seen!  And other than that, take care, and I’ll see you next week!