Guest Comic By Lee Bretschneider

hijinks-ensue-godspeed-you-fancy-bastard-book-300x300Reading about my continuing health problems, HE reader and super fancy illustrator Lee Bretschneider sent me this fantastic guest comic without me even having to ask. Check out his portfolio at AdventuringCompany.com, and his comic “Wheelchair Romeo.” Also check him out getting his back waxed at RIGHT HERE. It’s awful.

Normally I would ask a potential guest-comicer to clear their intentions with me first, but Lee had the foresight to be incredibly talented which precludes the need for artist clearance. I’m very grateful for the helping hand seeing as how I spent 12 hours in the emergency room yesterday.

If you want to play catch-up on my most recent medical misadventures you can do so on the Twitters starting from here.

Longest-possible-story-ever-short:

  1. Thought I had an aneurysm [9/24]
  2. CT Scan and Spinal Tap proved I was OK
  3. $1400 bill
  4. Spinal Tap didn’t heal correctly so my brain didn’t have enough brain juice to float in causing 24 hour migraines/nausea for 7 days
  5. migraines got out of control, chest and neck pain started, vision started going wonky
  6. Wet to ER at “poor folks” hospital downtown [9/30]
  7. They wanted to treat me with pain meds and send me on my way
  8. 10 hours later they agreed to to the blood patch I needed to repair my spinal fluid leak
  9. 12 hours total and $1600 later I went home and slept for almost 24 hours

Now that my medical bills have topped $3000, I am considering some kind of donation drive or limited print sale to help take care of them. If you have ideas, let me know. Otherwise I will think about it and post something next week.

BOOK UPDATE: The books should be here on Monday [10/5/09]. I leave for Baltimore Comic-Con a few days later so there probably won’t be any books shipped until I get back. I may do some live streaming of the book signings/sketchings on Ustream.

Thank you all for your continued support and kind words through what has been one of the crappiest months of my life.

GYFB

~Joel

Malpractice Makes Perfect

Panel one is the actual exchange I had with the ER doc that did my spinal tap just after the needle went “pop.” If you have never experienced what it is to have a device manipulating around in your spinal column, let me just say that I A) DO NOT RECOMMEND IT and B) can’t stress enough how wrong it feels.

HEALTH UPDATE: I feel worse today than I did yesterday. This does not bode well for my trip to Baltimore in roughly a week. If I don’t feel better by Sunday I’m going to have to go back to the hospital.

BOOK UPDATE: The books officially exist and are shipping from the frozen wilderness of Canada today. The bad news is the print run went over by 100 books which cost me another $600 (this is apparently something that happens when you print books). So ORDER THOSE BOOKS!!! Order 100 of them!

Special thanks to you Fancy Bastards that have donated towards my medical bills. You’ve covered over $500 in the last week. I appreciate your generosity more than I know how to express.

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Welcome To The Machine

This comic depicts my adventures with the inversion table I just bought off of The Craig List. I’ve come to refer to it as “The Infernal Machine.” For the uninitiated, the purpose of an inversion table is to hang you upside down by your ankles to relieve tension on your spine. The first time you strap in and invert, you get the sensation that all of your feet blood is fighting a turf war with your head blood for control of your brain. Your eyes feel like they’r being hoovered back into your skull and your ears immediately engorge with hatred. It’s unpleasant to say the least. Once you get used to it, however, it’s not so bad.

After 5-10 minutes in The Infernal Machine, my spine feels quite a bit better. The positive effects only last for a few minutes right now but I’m hoping they will lengthen with repeated use. I should also mention that my left ankle is only attached to my leg by a tangled mess of sinew, muscle and fractured fragments of bone. hijinks-ensue-godspeed-you-fancy-bastard-book-300x300

With all the book related extra work I’ve had, I’ve neglected to update The Vault. I tried to remedy that today by adding 3 posts showing the making of the art for the book cover, and new desktop featuring the Ewok Stare based on this comic.

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It Hurts When I Do this

And by “this” I mean” everything.

At least they were just Spine Weevils and not Vertibraphids. Those are fatal.

If you follow me on Twitter, you know that I’ve been having some severe back pain issues for the last few weeks. I’ve had a bad back my whole life, but this is the first time that the pain has kept me from being able to sit, stand or walk. For the last few days I’ve been living on the couch in a reclined position. I really appreciate all the suggestions ou guys have been tweeting and emailing me for back pain relief and I’ve tried many of them.

I went to one chiropractor who was a complete douche-face. He talked to me for 10 minutes then gave me a bill for over $3000. I told him I couldn’t accept this “treatment plan” and he was pretty much done with me. The 2nd chiropractor I went to was much nicer and seemed concerned about actually relieving my pain rather than using me to finance his new boat. He seemed to think I have a bulging disk. Based on the description of the symptoms I would agree, but only an MRI ($$$) could confirm. I picked up an inversion table on Craigslist to stretch out my spine and hopefully allow that disk to move back into it’s natural position. Hanging upside down for by my ankles for 10 minutes at a time isn’t pleasant at all but it seems to be helping little by little.

A lot of you have suggested yoga and stretching which I am trying too. My mobility is very limited right now, so hopefully I’ll be able to do more of this sort of thing soon. I really appreciate all the well wishes and advice and I’ll keep you apprised of my [hopefully] improving condition. I’m glad I was able to do a comic about this. It’s good to laugh at your own misfortune.

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