Pre-Babies Bucket List

2 May

“Get it in now.”

That’s what Carey and I are hearing all the time, several times a week at least from loved ones who truly mean well.  They’re usually talking about sleep, but they also mention the other frills no-kids-couples take for granted: eating out, catching a movie, blowing disposable income on a spur-of-the-moment-whatever-it-is.  Because the time is coming, and that right soon, that even a trip to Subway is going to be A MAJOR FRICKIN’ ORDEAL.

A little about me, because you’re dying to know: I’m an illustrator and an advertising art director.  I do an awful lot of storyboard art and a fair amount of cartooning.  I’ve worked on video game covers, children’s books, character design, the odd comic book here and there.  I keep a blog of original comic strips I give away as gifts and, when I’m not doing any of the above, I do a lot of drawing for fun.  A few years ago, I did a kind of wild-guess calculation and estimated that I probably produce somewhere in the neighborhood of nearly 1,000 drawings a year.  I looked it up and that officially qualifies me as an “artist” but, then, so’s the guy who runs naked through Times Square with clothespins on his nipples.

No surprise, nearly all of my big ambitions are creative in nature, most of them publishing-related.  A handful of my dreams have come true and some have yet to.  It’s usually a little anticlimactic, but it still feels pretty good to check off something major.

So Carey and I have been looking at each other and asking each other if there’s anything big we want to get out of the way while it’s still just the two of us and we’ve more or less come to the conclusion that, sure, of course there is, but we don’t really have the time or energy, particularly if we need to rearrange everything in our lives over the course of the next 12-16 weeks.

But for some reason, I was looking through a few old blog entries recently and I came across a post from 2006.  Besides being amazed by how insanely long my blog posts used to be, I was struck by my list of “69 Weird Things About Me” (I know, I know).  Particularly item #45:

One day I will meet the artist Kevin Maguire and I will tell him that his work decided my career path. I don’t know how it will happen (mainly because I have no idea where he lives) and as the years go by, I get more and more nervous about it, but it will happen.


Kevin Maguire was and is a comic book artist and his artwork made me want to do what I do for a living.  I could go on (but I also discovered  I already did).  I suppose it’s more than a little geeky and possibly even creepy, but I’ve always wanted to meet the man himself and let him know that his work helped me decide who I wanted to be.

And as it turns out, Maguire was a special guest at a comics convention in Anaheim over the weekend.  He was autographing prints of his latest comics creation.  So I went:

A photo of Kevin Maguire, taken by me.

A photo of me, taken by Kevin Maguire. (Sorry, kids, his recent work's a little on the saucy side.)

We chatted for a minute or two about his work and what he’s enjoying about it and etc. etc.  I fought through embarrassment and gave him a hyper-abbreviated version of the speech I’ve been rehearsing for about 20 years and he accepted it graciously.  I told him he was the reason I went into art as a career and he said, “oh, so you’re blaming me?”  Of all the things I was expecting, the thing I’d least prepared for was what happened: my art-hero turned out to be a good-tempered, funny guy.

So, item #whoknowswhat on my personal Pre-Babies Bucket List: check.

Listen, I know this really has almost nothing to do with our triplets, but I thought I’d mention it here anyhow.  I suppose it’s sort of a post about following your dreams and doing what you need to do to realize them, and that’s what I want for my kids.

Or maybe it’s a post about rounding up the dangling plot threads from this chapter, clearing the stage for the next one.

Or I suppose it could be one of those stories I’ll bore the hell out of my boys with one day.

Whatever the case, I’d like to be somebody’s else’s Kevin Maguire.  You never know, could happen.  Inspiring people:  it’s what an artist should do.

Or a dad.

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14 Responses to “Pre-Babies Bucket List”

  1. pam May 2, 2011 at 7:21 pm #

    Very cool! And, yeah. I long for the days of quick after-work grocery and gym trips.

  2. Jon May 2, 2011 at 7:42 pm #

    Awesome, Jer. He looks like a good guy.

    • Jeremy May 9, 2011 at 3:56 pm #

      He really was very nice.

  3. Karen May 3, 2011 at 5:14 am #

    Jer….I cannot wait to meet you in person. I feel like I am getting to know you and Carey so well just by reading your blogs and I so look forward to every one of them. You have the ability to pen what a lot of us think and feel but most likely don’t have the courage or ability to voice. BTW…don’t sell yourself short on being a parent….we all feel that way. We do the best we can. Parenting doesn’t come with a handbook and thankfully our children survive in spite of us :). At least mine have (LOL).

    • Jeremy May 9, 2011 at 3:57 pm #

      Thanks, Karen! I should tell you ahead of time that I’m kind of a let down in person. DON’T SET YOUR EXPECTATIONS TOO HIGH.

      Thanks for the kind words. We look forward to meeting you as well.

  4. Andy Kerr May 3, 2011 at 5:36 am #

    My bucket list included “buy a motorcycle and ride it across the country.” Deborah told me, similarly, to do it now, because it wasn’t happening post-baby. Three days later, I had a motorcycle in my driveway!

    • Jeremy May 9, 2011 at 3:58 pm #

      Insert I Dream Of Jeanie Eye-Blink/Wish-Granting SFX here.

  5. Randy Bear May 3, 2011 at 6:36 am #

    We’re all about to meet three tremendous little boys that you will not only be their “Kevin Maguire” but their role model, hero, teacher, spiritual mentor… and friend. It will easily be the most fun job (and most difficult) you’ve ever had. And I personally can’t wait to spoil those boys rotten. 🙂 (I’ve already gotten their Silver Eagles!)

    • Jeremy May 9, 2011 at 3:59 pm #

      I hope you’re right.

  6. modvegan May 3, 2011 at 8:13 am #

    I’m soo happy you finally got to meet Kevin! I know there isn’t time for either of us to cross much off the list before the kiddos arrival…maybe we can cross some off together, triplets and all! 🙂

  7. Jenny Lovette May 4, 2011 at 7:37 am #

    I think Kevin looks like an “older” you! Or is it the hats?

    • Jeremy May 9, 2011 at 4:00 pm #

      I think we were the only two people in the whole convention hall with fedoras.

  8. Erin May 4, 2011 at 6:15 pm #

    Don’t let too many people scare you and Care with the “you better… before the babies come” lines. Truth be told, those boys will change your life dramatically, and yes, even Subway will be a challenge for some years. BUT, you’ll have so many new experiences with your children that you probably won’t feel like you’re missing all that much of your “old” life. You’ll probably find yourself WANTING to stay at home with your kids and some good take-out instead of braving the big world anyway. As for sleep–eh, you’ve got at least 30 good years after the boys are gone to stare at each other and sleep all you want.

    • Jeremy May 9, 2011 at 4:00 pm #

      B-but I likes mah sleep!

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