Tokyo Vacation — A year ago this week I was in Tokyo with my family. Scroll down to read more and see photos from the trip.

Sensitivity training has got to be downright bizarre at Evil Inc. Today’s comic kicks off a new storyline. As you may remember, I’m now approaching Evil Inc as a comic book. In January, I started the first issue — a 23-page story that wrapped up at the end of June.

Today is the start of Issue #2.  Thea is looking for Giant Tess for a very important reason — she’s going to have to lay off some employees to balance the budget. But whom? And who’s the Big Bad who’s purchasing a scheme from Miss Match’s department? My plan is to try to incorporate more crossovers between Evil Inc and Evil Inc After Dark. So, often you will see a situation that starts in Evil Inc and then continues in Evil Inc After Dark. For example, my Patreon backers will soon find out exactly what was going on in that warehouse.

Speaking of which…

Now on Patreon…


The sidekicks’ quest to break their collective “thwartless” streak may be coming to a head! Fantasia has been spotted running amok in the city, and her superpower takes you to the brink exploiting your kink. This story updated last week with the full-page version of the cropped image above, and it will continue in July along with a second Evil Inc After Dark storyline. All of this is available exclusively through Patreon.

Tokyo Adrift, Part 1

A year ago this week, my family and I took and amazing once-in-a-lifetime trip to Japan. Over two weeks, we’d visit Tokyo and Kyoto. Our group consisted of me, my wife, our two sons, my in-laws and my brother-in-law. We deciphered subway maps, ate weird (to me) food, saw jaw-dropping sights and — best of all — met some of the friendliest, most genuinely kid people I’ve ever come across.

Over the course of the next few days, I’m gonna share some of the sights and stories from that trip. Consider this Part One of an ongoing series about my family’s Tokyo vacation. Click on any photo to enlarge it.

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The first hotel we stayed at was the Tokyo Grand Hotel. This was the key to our room. I am not making this up.

Our flight was upwards of about 20 hours — with a connection in Toronto. Needless to say, we were wiped out when we finally made our way from the airport to the hotel. We had reserved three hotel rooms — deciding to let my two sons share a room on their own. Bleary-eyed, we all agreed to catch a quick nap and then go out in search of food.

After an hour, I woke up and went down the hall to check on my sons. I knocked on the door, but nobody responded. I knocked louder. Nothing. I walked back to our room and called theirs on the hotel phone. Nothing.

And, in our abject fatigue, no one thought to keep their room key before heading off to pass out.

Now… logically, I knew that they were behind the door, fast asleep.

But — and you parents will get this — there’s something a little unnerving about not being able to confirm the whereabouts of your kids (especially so far away from home). Not a great way to start our Tokyo vacation.

So, I went down to the front desk and explained my situation (as best I could).

The manager was more than understanding and followed me back to their room with a master key.

He simply opened the door with a smile and excused himself.

I remember leaving my luggage in a hotel room during a comic convention here in the states. I had to ask a housekeeper to let me in. When I remember the question-and-answer session that preceded that — and the amount of proof I had to offer that I was, indeed, who I was saying I was — I had to laugh at the differences in our cultures.

When we opened the door, we found exactly what we expected — two fast-asleep little boys. Well, not exactly what we expected. They had found the robes in the closet, and had quickly decided that they approved of another aspect of Tokyo culture.

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Tokyo vacation — and Indian food?

Now, fully awake and hungry, some of the adults wandered out into the neighborhood to find something to eat. Although we were initially intent on finding something uniquely Japanese for our first meal there, we were completely sidetracked by this place.

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Master Chef Kitchen —an Indian restaurant just a few blocks from our hotel. The food was tremendous and the people were extremely nice to our group of exhausted travelers. They had added an ingredient to their vindaloo recipe that I had been previously unfamiliar with. What I had assumed was a potato was, in fact, a hard-boiled egg. Now, I’ve always been what people politely called a “fussy eater.” (“‘Fussy eater’ is a euphemism for ‘big pain in the ass.'”  — George Carlin) But I was determined to try new things while I was in Japan. I’m glad I did. It was awesome. Now I kind of miss it when I order from Indian restaurants in Philly.

Tokyo vacation — room with a view

The next morning, I awoke to scope the view from our hotel room.

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Now, any self-respecting Godzilla fan knows that red tower that resembles the Eiffel Tower is the Tokyo Tower, and it has been the focal point of several kaiju battles — in movies like Mothra, Ghidroah: The Three-Headed Monster, Gamera, King Kong Escapes, Godzilla vs Gigan, Godzilla: Tokyo S.O.S., and Godzilla: Final Wars.

There were other familiar sights in the hotel room as well. For example…

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Who knew there were Buddhist Gideons?!

And if I ever meet an American visiting Japan who orders from Domino’s Pizza, I think I may become violent. I got worked up, standing in my hotel room, just thinking about it. Luckily, my hotel toothbrush was there for me.

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Ahhhhhh. Spiritual centeredness has never been so minty fresh. Japan, I love you.

How to throw a curveball in Pokémon GO

If you’re a frequent listener to the Hey Comics — Kids! podcast, you know that my younger son, Max, is a hardcore Pokémon fan. So, when Pokémon GO was released, I downloaded it to my iPhone immediately, and the two of us set out on our neighborhood to learn it.

We’ve been having a blast, and it’s been fun for the two of us to be able to do something like this together. As a result, I find myself in a situation I’ve never experienced before — giving advice on video games.

Here’s my first — how to throw a curve in Pokémon GO.

First of all, when you discover a Pokémon, your phone enters Capture Mode. A green circle goes from big to small around the Pokémon. (It will be yellow later, and, finally red, as the Pokémon get more difficult to catch.)

I keep reading that the Pokémon is easier to catch when the circle is smaller. I’m not sure about that. What I do know is that you can score big XP bonuses by throwing a curveball at the Pokémon.

Here’s how you do it.

  • Use your camera to position the Pokémon in the lefthand-center section of the screen.
  • Trace a circle around the Pokéball with your finger. As a right-hander, I find it more natural to trace a counter-clockwise circle.
  • Now, picture a clock around the Pokéball. You want to release your finger between the 2 and the three.

Here’s an animate to help you get it down. Give it a little practice, and you’ll be pitching major-league hooks.