365 T-shirts - the reasoning

This blog should be sub-titled: a journal of my life in geek.

I get my geek on with things about which I am geeky: comic books, Baseball, Ultimate, science fiction, my favorite bands, books I have read and loved, and Jungian psychology to name some of the most frequently traversed subjects.

I began this project simply as a way to count my T-shirts. I own a lot of T-shirts. But how many do I have? Do I have 365? We shall find out.

When I started this blog, I thought about how each T-shirt means something to me. I bought it for a reason, after all. I set myself the task to post an entry about a new T-shirt every day as a way to simply write something every day, a warm up for writing fiction, which is my passion. Writing is like exercise. Warm ups are good for exercise. But after completing a month of blogging about T-shirts, I have learned that this blog serves as a journal; it documents my life in geek, sort of a tour of my interests in pop culture. The blog serves as a tool for self-inventory, for assessment and analysis of self and the origins of self, for stepping through the process of individuation in catalogues, lists, and ranks.

The blog also made me aware that I have some serious gaps in my T-shirt ownership, and I am in the process of collecting some new T-shirts for several of the great popular culture icons that I truly love. Stay tuned.

I was also a bit surprised that people checked out my blog and continue to check it, read it, and even comment on it. I am very appreciative of this readership. Please feel free to share your thoughts in my comments section. I will respond.

Also, please note that I have moved the original introductory text to the side bar. And now, I present to you the most recent entry of 365 T-shirts: a journal of my life in geek. Thank you for reading.
(Second Update - 1310.24. First Update - 1306.05 Originally Posted - 1304.25.)

Friday, October 25, 2013

T-shirt #218: New X-Men by Jim Lee

T-shirt #218: New X-Men by Jim Lee

This is an old T-shirt, and it smells a bit musty, indicating that I may not have worn it in sometime. It is a bit stretched out and the art is a little faded. It is possible that this shirt dates back to about 1991. I was so enamoured of the revamped Psylocke (turning her from buxom, Brit lass to a slimmed down, long-legged Asian psychic ninja) that I had my Dad redraw the art for my MFA reading, which in protest of WMU, I held at KVCC sometime around 1992 or 1993.

The shirt's art is from X-Men #6 published in 1991 featuring a defeated Wolverine in the hands of Sabertooth as Psylocke stands by, apparently having aided the villain. This is one of my favorite images from this era, and Jim Lee is a favorite artist, as I mentioned recently in writing about his current project: Superman Unchained.

Nevertheless, today's shirt exists primarily to allow me to write more about comic book (when do I need an excuse?) with your favorite feature of the week: THE WEEKLY COMICS LIST.

I also have a few remarks on recent audio book pleasures, subjects that fascinate me, blog categories, and the last Root Beer Stand stop of the year.


I used to be a more spontaneous person. My wife is my spontaneous than I am. For me, generally, things must be planned ahead of time. I am juggling too many things to be spontaneous all the time. When it comes to what I am reading, there's a mixture of spontaneity and planning. For instance, Ender's Game has jumped up my stack for a quick re-read as the movie is due out next week. But my re-reading of Dune has been in the works for about five years. But more recently, I have mentioned it three times on this very blog: T-shirt #181, T-shirt #207, and T-shirt #209 because as you know I love to refer you readers back to previous blog entries. Also, I did just discover the means of searching the blog for keywords, which helped with making that list immensely.

I am loving the re-read of Dune in a full cast recording so much that I am going to re-read the next two volumes (Dune Messiah and Children of Dune) and the other Frank Herbert volumes that I never read (another three volumes). I strongly recommend the book and this full cast audio edition. My experience of the book is much richer this time through.


I know I go on and on about the same subjects a great deal. This is one of the pitfalls of the blog. It is subject to my own whims and interests, to my daily life, and all the elements that populate it. I keenly remember one reader telling me that he liked the blog though it contained a bit too much about comic books for his taste. This comment gave me pause, and I have given it a lot of thought in the many months since. I have strived for variety. And yet, subjects like comic books, science fiction, Ultimate, and Baseball are going to recur over and over and over and far beyond the interests of some readers, both frequent and infrequent. With this in mind, I changed the header text at the top of every blog page to list the main subjects I define as part of my geekdom. I figured readers who land on my blog via a random search should have some idea of what they are getting into if they venture forward and deeper.


I have been once again reflecting on my blog and its elements: this time, categories. From the top of the first page any given day, scroll down a bit, and you will find a list of categories. So, if you do truly love the Weekly Comics Lists, you can click and bring up all those entries on one page. I have recapped these entries before, and you can view some of these recaps (assuming I have archived them all correctly) via the Blog Recap category.

But a category problem has occurred to me. The categories are not wholly accurate. For instance, the Comic Books category (currently at 65 entries) does not represent sixty-five t-shirts with comic book art or logos.  Looking at those entries will bring up all entries with comic book art and all the entries in which I wrote about comic books, of which just glancing at the most recent there are six in the first 12 or so.

This problem is true for many of the big categories. Baseball shows a list of all the entries in which I wrote about Baseball, not just those entries with shirts devoted to Baseball.

Sub-categories are a bit more accurate. DC Comics will bring up a list of twenty-six shirts with DC Comics art. Likewise, Marvel Comics will bring up a list of sixteen shirts devoted to Marvel Comics. Given that I have "too much about comic books," these numbers strike me as surprisingly low.

Just a "for your information" report on how the blog works, thanks for reading.


I love the Root Beer Stand. Mainly, the one on Westnedge as it is across the street from Fanfare. But any will do. I miss the old Dog 'n Suds drive ins that used to be here in Kalamazoo.

The Root Beer Stand closes for the season tomorrow. So despite the chill, I will have my last chili dogs and root beer of the season today for lunch. This is my picture from last week Friday, what I thought would be the last visit to the Root Beer Stand for the year.

Do not be surprised if I buy a Root Beer Stand T-shirt.

SIDENOTE on the ROOT BEER STAND: I believe that many years ago A&W owned the drive-in here on Westnedge. I was a big fan of these places from a very young age. I was six years old and in first grade when we moved to town, living in Schoolcraft for one year before we moved to Richland.

One day, out shopping with my mom, I wanted to go to the Root Beer Stand. In trying to find it, my mom got lost. Because Westnedge becomes one way in downtown Kalamazoo, she ended up on Park Street North and before she knew it she was heading up onto 131 Business Loop, knowing that this was not the way to the Root Beer Stand. She pulled over somewhere, found a pay phone and called my father. She needed directions back to Schoolcraft because by then it was much too late to go have a root beer.

How much easier is this situation these days with cell phones and GPS? Even without GPS, my mother would have been much less panicked to call my dad from the car than to find a pay phone in a part of Kalamazoo that frightened her.


I have been looking forward to Brubaker and Epting's Velvet for months. So have other readers. Check out this fan boy's reviews.


This is a great write up (from two months ago) about many of the comics that I have been raving about, such as Lazarus, Fatale, and Saga. (Okay, I have not quite raved about Saga, but I am going to.)
I think the James Bond feel of Velvet (heh) is going to make for a good read.

And yet, I log it somewhat lower this week than others. Aquaman will always take the top spot when it comes out. I love this book. I have had an Aquaman post in the works for months, quite literally. I mentioned an Aquaman toy in a photo in a blog entry in July! I have intended, since probably the end of June, to write a ton of Aquaman content. But I have not. I have thought about Aquaman and tried to figure why I love the character and the comic book so much. I have collected a stack of all the recent Aquaman issues. I have mentioned my purchase of two volumes of Silver Age Aquaman stories. And yet, I have very little other than a couple of links, a few photos, and a video to share. But with the most recent issue (#24, which I read last night), this content dearth may change.

Ultimate Spider-Man takes the second spot, though this issue was a little bit of a let down, possibly because I am concerned that the upcoming Cataclysm story line will shut down the Ultimate universe entirely. Though I would not be surprised to see the current Spider-Man from Ultimate Comics cross over into the mainstream Marvel universe if this is indeed the planned end of Ultimate universe.

Justice League ranks highly again with a strong issue on the origin of Uberman. The next Battle of the Atom chapter takes the next slot because I finished all the others two nights ago, and I want to find out what happens. Velvet is a bit lower, but all of these comics will get read before next week's comics come out. I would be pouring through the back log more on Sunday during football if not for playing D&D (actually Pathfinder) with several nice young men. Ah well...

Not much else to share about the list, though check out the special purchase. Shades of things to come...

COMICS FOR 1310.23

Aquaman #24
Ultimate Spider-Man #28
Justice League #24
Wolverine and the X-Men #037 - Battle of the Atom Chapter 9
Daredevil  #032
FF #013
Iron Man #017
Nova #009
Young Avengers #011
Flash #24
Velvet #1 (Brubaker/Epting)
Clone #11
Great Pacific #11

Back Log

Tom Strong and the Planet of Peril #4 of 6
Uncanny Avengers #013
Thunderbolts #017
Teen Titans #24
Superman #24
Secret Avengers #010
Satellite Sam #4
Indestructible Hulk #014
Catwoman #24
Sex Criminals #2


- chris tower - 1310.24 - 13:30