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, January 17, 2014

T-shirt #302 - Green Lantern Logo

T-shirt #302 - Green Lantern Logo

I am tempted to leave this blog post with pictures only, just to be cryptic. But since I first wrote the previous sentence, content was filled in like using crayons to color in the figures of a coloring book.

To the left, I have posted my first Green Lantern issue, which is not my oldest.

It happens to be written by Dennis O'Neil, whom I was praising in yesterday's blog, and drawn by Gil Kane, who has received praise throughout my blog and again in yesterday's blog entry on Iron Men. Gil Kane was a constant in my early comic book purchases, which explains why I love his work so much.

However, my oldest issue of Green Lantern is one I acquired by purchase or trade (I think trade with a friend) as it was published before I was born. Again it features art by Gil Kane, which might be an amazing coincidence if not for Kane's longevity, pencilling the majority of the first 75 issues of the Silver Age Green Lantern.

Check this out


As for the other pictures, they come from our 2010 Halloween party at our former house, 8877 West Gull Lake Drive (which is still for sale boys and girls and is shown here in T-shirt #157). Liesel is responsible for the most awesome Halloween party I have ever been a part of. Halloween is her holiday.

My previous Green Lantern post:

T-shirt #191.

Is it because of my own search that my Google Plus post to this blog entry comes up in the first results page of my Google search of "Green Lantern" or would other people see this post in their results? I can't imagine that my Google Plus post is among the top ten results for EVERYONE. Still, it's interesting.






My first Green Lantern issue - V.2 - #68




with my friend Stephen Cameron
as terrorist

Seen to the left is a picture of me with my good friend Jessica Bauer (note that I am holding her leash). And so, yes, I own a Green Lantern costume. What of it?

The owning of the costume comes from being more comfortable in being my true "geeky" self and in being married to someone who appreciates me for me, my true geeky self for me.

Not that marriage was the deciding factor in feeling comfortable letting my "geek flag" fly but it definitely helped. It also helped that companies started to produce very cool and inexpensive superhero costumes as evidenced by my Captain America costume earlier this year (T-shirt #123).

Furthermore, my wife proved that she loves me for me by showering me with t-shirt gifts for my birthday, which is officially two days from the publication of this blog entry but actually yesterday in terms of when I am actually writing these words. Time dilates when I am behind on the blog. ALSO, and most importantly, and WITHOUT KNOWING, because she does not read my blog every day, my wife gave my a card with the Guatemalan proverb I shared in T-shirt #239. She reported that she looked through many cards and carefully selected this one (see picture right).

In T-shirt #239, I wrote about Jung and Process of Individuation as part THE BLOG JOURNEY. One thing I have come to trust in the Blog Journey is synchronicity. These seemingly meaningful connections may not be the result of some omniscient being, they may not be fate that can be attributed to a plan, but I do believe that the connections have meaning. There's energy at work here. The energy is connected because we are all connected, because everything is connected. And so it makes sense that I had found this proverb already when Liesel came across it and selected it for my birthday card, thinking that is embodied the essence of who I am and my Blog Journey, which is all about identity. And for me, identity means keeping and cleaving to the things of my childhood and yet living life as an adult in the adult world. We can do both. We really can. And this proverb sums up that choice. It's your spirit that matters. It's your attitude. It's your energy.

And energy seems to be a very appropriate topic for today's post about GREEN LANTERN, who is all about energy.

I have always really liked Green Lantern as a concept, though I was not crazy about Hal Jordan or any of the other lanterns as people. Nightwing, Aquaman, Deadman, Batman, Martian Manhunter, Hawkman, and Batgirl were always among my favorite DC heroes. This is by no means a complete list. Drawn to the magic heroes and capes, I would have to add the Spectre and Dr. Fate. Excluding several Teen Titans and Legion of Superheroes characters, I would probably situate Green Lantern in a top ten of the DC Heroes. But surely, I love his powers and the idea of a ring.

The power ring is a very attractive concept. Even more attractive than yesterday Iron Man armor, the power ring has even less impact on the body. The ring can sleeve the user in a special uniform. It can provide a protective shield and breathable air for space travel. It can provide FLIGHT, which we all know is the COOLEST of the super powers. And the ring allows for the creation of energy constructs that are fueled by imagination and will power, which are two very admirable and inspirational personal characteristics.

The logo is also among the most iconic in comics. I might argue that DC has the more iconic logos over Marvel: Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Flash, Shazam (Captain Marvel), and Green Lantern all have very distinctive logos that are archetypal, they are connected to the deep network of connections, they resonate and empower, they are hard wired into us. To a lesser extent Aquaman, Hawkman, the Atom, Robin, Nightwing, Starman, and a few others are powerful in their own way though not always immediately recognizable. There's power in the use of primary colors, strong contrasts, and simple yet effective imagery that make the logos viral and inspire many people to make them personal emblems. Though I would set higher the Flash, Batman, Hawkman, and Nightwing logos over the Green Lantern one, I think that if given my choice, I would choose TO BE Green Lantern for his powers.

There's something about wearing rings that is deeply rooted in my childhood play experience and the imagination of our culture. Tolkien used the ring for the central element of his Lord of the Rings stories, which were strongly influenced by the Ring Cycle from Norse mythology made famous by Wagner's operas. Comic books made great use of rings. Green Lantern has his ring, obviously. Flash housed his costume in a ring. The Mandarin had ten rings all of which did different things in his struggle to defeat Iron Man. Underdog had a ring as I mentioned in my Underdog post (T-shirt #288), and the Legion of Superheroes had flight rings (T-shirt #127). Rings are cool, and rings that bestow the power of flight are even cooler. Though my earliest childhood play mostly centered on the ring with the secret compartment, and I developed the play with the flying rings later.

After capes and wings, rings are probably the coolest element in superhero comics. But of those three, rings are surely the favorite in terms of lowest impact. Capes and wings are quite ostentatious. Rings can be worn as every day adornment without much fuss. Most people will not even notice rings or will only notice them if specifically looking for or at them. Capes and wings are much harder to miss.

As for the Green Lantern, his powers and his mission are very cool, possibly the coolest in the DC universe. Who wouldn't want to be an interstellar space peacekeeper with a power ring that can do almost anything?

Many comic book fans have not ever recovered from DC's decision to explain the "yellow impurity" of the green rings with the Parallax that possessed Hal Jordan and caused him to kill many of his friends and destroy his home town of Coast City, a story line that ended in his death (Jordan sacrificed himself to reignite a dying star). Later, Jordan was revived and resumed his role as Green Lantern, taking over from Kyle Rayner (who was the subject of my T-shirt #191).

These stories do not bother me. Artists have to shake the tree to get the nuts. If there's no change in the comic and to the heroes, the comics become stagnant. However, I am a little weary of the companies killing off their heroes, supposedly "for good," only to bring them back in a year or two (though Barry Allen Flash did stay dead for over 20 years).

One of the smartest things that the DC creative teams has done with the Green Lantern franchise over the years is to associate colors with emotions. Yellow became the color of fear as embodied by Parallax and for a long time as wielded with his own power ring by Green Lantern's greatest foe (and the villain that should have been in the movie) Sinestro (a former Lantern himself).

I remember fondly that just before I got married, DC launched the Blackest Night story line, which I identified with because I had chosen a black ring, like the Black Ring of the main villain: Black Hand. The story line gave rise to the Brightest Day story line and re-vitalized the Green Lantern franchise that had been underserved since The Rebirth story. After recently bringing Barry Allen back as the Flash (2008), the the Blackest Night story line brought Batman back from his demise after the Final Crisis. There were many other repercussions from this story line, but I am not going to discuss them all. (Though one has to do with Aquaman, which I will give text time to later).

The other story development that I wish to praise are the use of the colors and the creation of the other power rings as a result of the the Blackest Night story line. The EMOTIONAL SPECTRUM associates colors with emotions. It's best for me to share WIKIPEDIA on this (see previous link).

The emotional spectrum is divided into the seven colors of the rainbow, with each color corresponding to a different emotion: rage (red), avarice (orange), fear (yellow), willpower (green), hope (blue), compassion (indigo), and love (violet). However, it also represents the absence of color (black), which is death, and the combination of colors (white) which is life.[1][2][3][4][5][6] The two emotions on the far ends of the emotional spectrum (rage and love), have a much stronger influence over their users[7] while willpower, the center of the spectrum, can be used to overcome and maintain control over one's emotions.[6]
  • Red Lantern Corps: A group of berserkers formed by Atrocitus,[2] the Red Lanterns draw upon rage in order to create constructs made of red light with their power rings.[1][2][6]
  • Agent Orange: The sole bearer of the orange light is Larfleeze, also known as "Agent Orange", who draws upon greed to create constructs made of orange light with his power ring.[8] He also possesses the ability to steal the identities of people he's killed and transform them into orange light constructs which he uses to comprise his Orange Lantern Corps.[9]
  • Sinestro Corps: A group formed by former Green Lantern Sinestro, the Sinestro Corps draw upon fear to create constructs made of yellow light with their power rings, usually of the target's worst fear.[10][11]
  • Green Lantern Corps: An intergalactic police force founded and led by the Guardians of the Universe, their members draw upon willpower in order to generate constructs made of green light from their power rings.[12]
  • Blue Lantern Corps: Formed by former Guardians Ganthet and Sayd, the Blue Lanterns draw upon hope in order to generate constructs made of blue light with their power rings,[citation needed] which are created from the target's hopes.[citation needed] Blue Lanterns can only have the full extent of their abilities unlocked in the presence of a green power ring.[5][13] A blue ring can also supercharge a green ring.[14]
  • Indigo Tribe: A nomadic tribe lead by Indigo-1, the Indigo Tribe draw upon compassion in order to generate constructs made of indigo light with their power rings.[15] The tribe also possesses the ability to teleport and reproduce the abilities of other Corps.[16]
  • Star Sapphires: Formed by the Zamarons, the Star Sappphire Corps were formed in order to spread love throughout the universe; drawing upon love to in order to create constructs made of violet light with their power rings.[17]
  • Black Lantern Corps: An army of zombies formed by Nekron, the Black Lanterns are composed of deceased people who are resurrected by a black power ring.[18] A black ring is fueled by death itself and enables the wearer to create constructs made of black light[18] as well as read the emotions of other being as colors within the emotional spectrum.[18]
  • White Lantern Corps: Formed by Hal Jordan, the White Lanterns draw upon the power of life itself to create constructs made of white light with their power rings.[19] White rings can also resurrect the dead, restoring them to life.[19]


Maybe my own Blog Journey shares this representation of emotion by color and finding the one with which I most closely identify (I am leaning towards Love/Compassion).


I restricted myself to my favorite covers from the two sets of Green Lantern volume two issues for this blog. Still I posted many of my oldest comics, which was part of my goal. I tried to keep the number of covers somewhat limited (still I have twenty-one), but these are either those I owned and/or ones I think are the most iconographic and intriguing.

Gil Kane

Gil Kane

Gil Kane

Gil Kane

Gil Kane

Gil Kane

Gil Kane

Gil Kane

Neal Adams

Neal Adams

Neal Adams

Neal Adams
also one of the early issues
I own

Neal Adams

Neal Adams

Mike Grell
I own this one, too

Mike Grell

Brian Bolland

Joe Staton

Gil Kane

Dave Gibbons

Walt Simonson
COUNTDOWN TO END OF THE BLOG YEAR - 63 shirts remaining

- chris tower -  first published - 1401.17 - 20:28
final publication - 1401.20 - 9:53