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Life: The Rest Of Our Lives

Posted in 104, awesomeness, blame society, life, work on March 6th, 2014 by Hannibal Tabu

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Recently I left my job of five and a half years as a web drone for a major integrated managed care organization (MIMCO). I’d been miserable for more than a year and a half, thanks to being “reorganized” under the command of someone who (in retrospect it seems) didn’t like me from the moment we met. Aside from the financial stability for my family, I tried to stay in position due to the health insurance that was provided (also, ironically, serviced by MIMCO), which I felt was necessary for a nagging cardiac issue I developed (coincidentally) in the last year.

Under doctor’s orders, I was taking “beta blockers” to regulate the beating of my heart, and the cardiologists hoped that given time my heart would simply heal itself. My lifestyle choices and diet were not at fault (“You didn’t do this to yourself,” one doctor told me point blank), as I have crystal clear arteries, decent cholesterol and all other indicators of sturdy health. I have up fried foods some years ago, I try to exercise, I even got a horrifying prostate exam. I’m playing by the rules. One teensy wall of my cardiac organ was not performing as it should, so care had to be taken.

As my health insurance coverage was about to expire, my cardiologist believed that I may be ready to stop taking the medicine. The cynic in me wondered if losing coverage had anything to do with this, as an untimely demise would work in the best interests for everybody at MIMCO. Nonetheless, an echocardiogram showed that my heart was operating as it should and therefore I was no longer required to relentlessly follow the rather laissez-faire course of treatment prescribed for me.

So, in either a wonderful display of serendipity or a cynical attempt at murder (I’m choosing to believe the former), I now have a clean bill of health and am drug free once again. Sure, I suppose I now have a “pre-existing condition,” but that won’t be an issue in getting future coverage (thanks, Obama!) and for the foreseeable future, I am “okay.”

In a word, “yay!”

For this to happen as I am seeing the release of my debut comic book, announcing my new project and enjoying some favorable media scrutiny, I consider an enormous blessing. I also do connect my liberation from a frankly oppressive situation connected with my improved health. I am happy to (finally) share this news with you (as honestly it happened on Monday and i was too busy to get to telling you all until today).

I’m still keeping the last of the pills, though.

Just in case …

Playing (Music): “Happy” by Pharrell

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Life: Older 2014

Posted in 104, anniversary, awesomeness, bad ideas, blame society, comics, family, happiness, inspiration, life, relationships on January 20th, 2014 by Hannibal Tabu
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hannibal tabu 2014

Once again, I stand poised on the precipice of change, winds of possibility buffeting me as I wonder at tomorrow.

The last year has been interesting, from my first health crisis to moving to winning the Top Cow Talent Hunt to a host of other opportunities, challenges, amusements and foibles. I got into Eccleston’s Doctor Who. I saw my wife’s design business expand. I got an iPad upgrade. I DJed the LA County Fair after parties again, plus a number of other fun private affairs. I had enormous challenges in my professional life. I got to see more of my little girls becoming little people, their personalities gelling and becoming what they will be. I cemented a new tradition of birthday karaoke, low stress, fun times, no drama.

I’m still standing. I’m still here. I’m grateful and determined and sleepy and moving forward.

I’m showing off art from an Eisner winner, made from my words. I’m in a long term partnership with a brilliant independent from my home town.

I’m not afraid, most of all. It feels good, especially since I spent most of my life believing I wouldn’t survive my 40th year, like Malcolm or Martin or many others.

On the other hand, Stan Lee allegedly created Spider-Man when he was 40, so let’s see what’s next, shall we?

Should be fun!

Playing (Music): “As” by Stevie Wonder

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Call To Action: Hannibal’s Very First Comic Book & How *You* Can Help

Posted in 104, awesomeness, buy pile, comics, creativity, happiness, inspiration, writing on November 6th, 2013 by Hannibal Tabu
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It could be considered an innocuous notice on page 316 of the latest Previews catalog …

solicitation ad for watson & holmes #7

… or it could have been presented like this …


  • Steven Grant (Punisher, Wolverine, 2 Guns)
  • Hannibal Tabu (The Buy Pile at Comic Book Resources, 2012 Top Cow Talent Hunt winner)
  • Featuring Art by Dennis Calero (Supergirl & The Legion of Super Heroes, X-Factor)

When one of Watson’s old army buddies gets in trouble, the crime solving duo leave the streets of New York behind for the tedium of the midwest. Holmes relies heavily on his network of informants and operatives … none of whom can help in so far from home.

Making this comic was so much fun for a number of reasons …

  • Working closely with Steven Grant has been a real education, in the best possible way. He’s a consummate professional who really knows the craft in ways that I was very, very happy learn from.
  • Brandon, Zack and everybody at New Paradigm run a very tight ship, and that was also a real pleasure.
  • Dennis Calero leapt into the creation of our fictional Illinois town, heavily based on Rockford, the city where I was born. they say you can’t go home again, but let’s just say this is close.
  • What can I say about Karl Bollers, who was like a big brother to me? He really help me get inside the heads and voices of the characters. That was enormous advantage.

This issue also follows hot on the heels of the surely under-ordered sixth issue, written by my good friend Brandon Easton. I am certain that when the story gets out, lots of people will be talking about it. All of the people who funded these issues on Kickstarter are surely going to get their money’s worth.

Another great thing for me was being able to touch on the plight of service people who are not properly served by the infrastructure when they return home. My wife and I both have close friends who served overseas, and to know the kinds of challenges they face when trying to reenter great with regular life, it’s really heartbreaking. Regardless of what you think about the policies behind military action (believe me I’m not in favor of it), the people who served, the actual boots on the ground, are really doing the best they can with a challenging situation. Hopefully, our story can bring a little more attention to that, even if only in a “don’t hate the player, hate the game” kind of way.

Here’s what I want you to do: please use the Comic Shop Locator to find the comic book store nearest you. Then please call that shop, and ask them to reserve a copy of Watson and Holmes #7 for you. Every time a retailer gets a person asking for a book, that encourages them to buy more to have on the stands in case people come in looking for. You can use either order code, NOV131148 or STK628599.

the cover for watson & holmes #7

Pre-orders help determine how retailers buy comics, as they are considered the actual customer by publishers. Black writers are wildly underrepresented in comics (only 20 Black writers have ever written more than one issue for the companies making up 70 percent of the market), so each thing we do can reflect positively or negatively on every one who follows them. Plus, as a degree holder in English, I guarantee this is a solid, self contained story.

If you love me, if you like me, if you even just barely tolerate me, I would really appreciate if you could do this for my professional debut as a comic book writer.

In any case, I “really, really thank you for dancing ’til the end, you found a way to freak out, you’re not afraid to freak out …”

Playing (Music): “Dance Apocalyptic” by Janelle Monae

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