Or Facebook or MySpace or Twitter:

Well yeah, first of all, there’s the amount of time it takes — I mean, don’t people have a life anymore? — but the main reason I’m not hooked up to anything except plain old email and this website is PASSWORDS. I HATE passwords! Why do I need passwords for everything, anyway? Am I afraid the Russians are gonna steal my graphic novel secrets? And some sites actually recommend that you CHANGE your password every few months. Are they kidding? I keep forgetting my passwords anyway, so I try to use the same passwords for everything, to make life easier, but some sites insist that it has too many letters or not enough letters or there has to be a number in there somewhere, so for those sites I’ll create a new password — and that will be the password I immediately forget!

The wall above my computer is decorated with postits that contain my passwords for Vistaprint, Alternet, Yahoo, Redroom, Skype, so if a Russian REALLY wanted to steal my graphic novel secrets, all he has to do is sneak in and copy down the passwords on the wall — except my graphic novel secrets are readily available.

Back to LinkedIn: at some point, aeons ago, somebody invited me into LinkedIn, and because it’s supposedly a professional web thingie, not just a social one, I thought maybe, being a professional (Note my professional use of the word “thingie”) I should join. So I joined with my fave password, the one I try to use all the time. Then one day I tried to log in with that password, and suddenly LinkedIn wouldn’t accept it! I clicked on “Forgot Password”, selected my old password all over again, and it worked again — for a while, until one day LikedIn wouldn’t accept it — again! Long story short, I did this twice more before giving up and quitting LinkedIn.

I hadn’t really done anything with my membership anyway, except accept other members as “friends,” some of whom really WERE friends, but most of whom I hardy knew.

And this brings up the whole concept of “friends”: I mean, what the…? I thought a friend was a real live flesh and blood person with whom you laughed, smiled, shared ideas, drank coffee, took photos. And to prove it, here are some photos of some real live friends, some oldish, some new.

The siren in the red cheong sam posing with me is Kristen Caven, cartoonist and author of “Perfectly Revolting: My ‘Glamorous’ Cartooning Career.” We’re at the Art Deco ball, which I couldn’t afford to attend, but Kristen talked me into donating my book, “Forbidden City: the Golden Age of Chinese Nightclubs,” for their silent auction and attending the ball as a volunteer, which gave me the opportunity of dressing up in my champagne colored cheong sam. That’s what friends do!

Then there I am with David Marshall and his girlfriend, Samantha Milowsky. David is a cartoonist who teaches great comics workshops in Boston (http://www.artofthecomicbook.com/). He and Samantha were here on a visit, so we popped into my favorite cafe, drank coffee, and talked comics.

Finally, here I am at San Francisco Museum of Performance and Design with my brand new best pal, program assistant Tony Bravo. The event was all about the fashions of the 1960s and 70s, and the invitation said to dress in the style of the period, so I wore my psychedelic jumpsuit, and new best pal Tony put this photo up on the museum website. (friends put friends up on their websites!)

Coming up in the future: an event for my Forbidden City book at the Museum of Performance and Design! But first, the San Francisco Asian Art Museum on June 24th. More on that soon!


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