Start-Up Beatdown #6 — The Mexican

After a long delay, here is is the next chap­ter in my true-life night­mar­ish work expe­ri­ence.  In this chap­ter, I deal with Sean Etin’s mon­ster of a 10 year-old son…

Danny Friedman is The Mexican
This is the actu­al pho­to­shopped pic­ture that my old co-work­er made when he heard about the expe­ri­ences in this chap­ter…


Startup Beatdown

Chapter 6: The Mexican


Of all the hor­ri­ble tasks I had to do at Seashel Pro­duc­tions, my least favorite, by far, was hav­ing to pick up and drop off Sean Etin’s kids.

Dur­ing any giv­en day, I would be asked to make runs in my car – to mail some­thing to the post office, or buy office sup­plies, or even to pick up a share­hold­er at the air­port – and usu­al­ly I didn’t mind. In fact, I would usu­al­ly jump at the chance to be paid while get­ting away from the office and what­ev­er tor­ture-induc­ing insan­i­ty that would be going on at any giv­en day. I even man­aged to not be screwed out of my car mileage costs by print­ing out an IRS form along with my expense report for how much mon­ey they legal­ly owe me per mile after the comp­trol­ler sug­gest­ed I should just fill up the car and give them the receipt.

There was some­thing dif­fer­ent about pick­ing up and drop­ping off the kids. For one thing, I couldn’t delude myself that what I was doing was for the good of the com­pa­ny. It was one thing to be a gofer for a face­less com­pa­ny (no mat­ter how evil), and it was quite anoth­er to be a chauf­fer for over-priv­i­leged chil­dren. The thin line between Sean Etin’s busi­ness and Sean Etin’s home life had been tram­pled over, and I was grabbed by the shirt col­lar and bum rushed over the oth­er side. The fact that it was so obvi­ous­ly not a part of my job descrip­tion (as it had noth­ing to do with the com­pa­ny) made me feel used. The fact that, dur­ing these car rides, I was essen­tial­ly work­ing under the eyes of chil­dren made me feel demeaned.

More of an issue was the fact that Sean Etin’s son, Gareth, was an insuf­fer­able, lit­tle shit­head. At ten years old, I could already tell that he was a chip off the old block. The kid was a cru­el-natured bul­ly who delight­ed in caus­ing pain in oth­ers. Unlike his father, whose cru­el per­sona was masked in a cru­sad­er-like, pugilis­tic sense of moral evan­ge­lism and para­noia, Gareth’s cru­el­ty was guile­less and pure. He was a bas­tard because he liked being a bas­tard. Caus­ing the great­est amount of dis­com­fort to those around him caused him gid­dy joy. There was noth­ing more to it than that. I despised him.

Read on after the jump or it can be found on the menu screen at the top of the page and right here.!

Read more Start-Up Beat­down #6 — The Mex­i­can

HTB #11 — Under the Mask

Half the Battle

#11 — Under the Mask

Start­ing with this strip, I’ve decid­ed to keep com­men­tary to a min­i­mum on the main page of my site.  If you want to see this strip with com­men­tary, CLICK HERE.

HTB #11 - Under the Mask

This and oth­er Half the Bat­tle comics can be seen (with added com­men­tary) on the HALF THE BATTLE page.

Now you know…

NEW REVIEW: Seven Chances

Peo­ple keep ask­ing me — “Dan­ny,” they say, “what do you think about Buster Keaton’s 1925 movie, Sev­en Chances?”  Well, those peo­ple will nev­er know, because I haven’t told them about this site.  But YOU can find out by click­ing here: SEVEN CHANCES REVIEW


Buster, Hat Girl
Buster and either a flap­per or a vamp… I can’t tell which.

Half the Battle #10 — Man on the Moon

Half the Battle

#10 — Man on the Moon

This is one of the very first strip ideas I came up with, and one of my per­son­al favorites.  The idea comes from an episode of the car­toon where Cobra Com­man­der’s grand scheme was to burn his face on the moon with a giant laser.  I saw it as a kid and nev­er for­got it.  It just seemed so stu­pid.  I watched the episode recent­ly, and cer­tain char­ac­ters with­in the show agreed with me.  Destro (who makes his first appear­ance in my strip) scold­ed Cobra Com­man­der for wast­ing mil­lions of dol­lars on what he called, “cos­mic graf­fi­ti.”  When it’s word­ed like that, it kind of seems awe­some…

Any­way, this strip has tak­en me the longest to do by far.  Since I kin­da suck at Pho­to­shop, I decid­ed to take a tuto­r­i­al on how to draw a moon.  Enjoy!

HtB #10 - Man on the Moon

This and oth­er Half the Bat­tle comics can be seen on the HALF THE BATTLE page.

Now you know…


Half the Battle #9 — Flint’s Gloves

Half the Battle

#9 — Flint’s Gloves

This is by far the most ‘insid­er’ of my strips.  Instead of mak­ing fun of some aspect of the car­toon, it makes fun of the fans (always a classy move!).  If you don’t get it, con­grat­u­la­tions!  You are not obses­sive enough about GI Joe to troll forums.  If you want to know what this strip is about, click HERE.


HTB #9 - Flint's Gloves


This and oth­er Half the Bat­tle comics can be seen on the HALF THE BATTLE page.

Now you know…

Half the Battle #8 — Nightmare Assault on America’s Pastime

Half the Battle #8 — Nightmare Assault on America’s Pastime

This is one of those rare Half the Bat­tle strips that imi­tates an actu­al scene from the Sun­bow car­toon.  The episode was called Night­mare Assault and it is one of my favorites.  In it, Dr. Mind­ben­der cre­ates a devise that gives all of the Joes night­mares, leav­ing them tired, ner­vous wrecks.  The only Joe that is unaf­fect­ed is Low Light.  Why?  Because he already does­n’t sleep, due to insom­nia.  And why does he have insom­nia?  Because he is afraid of hav­ing night­mares… Even­tu­al­ly, Low Light enters every­one’s dreams, fac­ing his and every­one else’s fears, and shoots a bunch of giant rat cars in the face while scream­ing mani­a­cal­ly stuff like, “I’m not afraid any­more, Dad!  What do you think of your son now?!?  BWA HA HA HA!”

Any­way, there was a scene in the episode where Life­line and Lady Jaye were talk­ing about the night­mares they were hav­ing.  Lady Jaye reveals, in a way that got past the cen­sors of a kids show, that she had to sing the Nation­al Anthem at a base­ball game naked.  (Lady Jaye and states of undress seemed to be a theme of the series that I may hit on lat­er…)  Any­way, the scene was actu­al­ly real­ly fun­ny, pos­si­bly more so than the strip below.  But what this strip has that the actu­al scene does­n’t is a diss on base­ball.  I can think of few­er things worse than hav­ing to watch a game…

HTB #8 - Nightmare Assault


This and oth­er Half the Bat­tle comics can be seen on the HALF THE BATTLE page.

Now you know…

Start-Up Beatdown #5 — Joel Vs. Hempstead

The fifth chap­ter of my true life per­son­al work hell is right here.  In this excit­ing episode, I become a wit­ness to mur­der­ous threats in the office.

Joel Vs. Hempstead
Pho­to cour­tesy of

Read on after the jump or it can be found on the menu screen at the top of the page and right here.!

Start-Up Beatdown

Chapter 5: Joel Vs. Hempstead


The first per­son in the office every­day was a man by the name of Sean Hemp­stead. Sean Hemp­stead was the omega wolf of the office. Sure, I was giv­en the shit­ti­est jobs to per­form, but most of the time, peo­ple treat­ed me with at least some respect (to my face, at least). Hemp­stead, how­ev­er, was treat­ed like worm-infest­ed shit. All bad vibes, bale­ful thoughts and evil juju were inevitably focused at this man like a beam. Per­haps it was because he would take it, when any nor­mal per­son would have quit or killed every­one in a shoot­ing ram­page …

Sean Hemp­stead had a desk next to mine in the hall­way. He was a tall, rather thin man, with a shock of blond hair, thick glass­es and the demeanor of an unin­vit­ed house­guest who made him­self at home. Often­times, I would find him stretched out in his chair, casu­al­ly shelling peanuts and poop­ing them in his mouth, while surf­ing the Inter­net. Though he looked to be in his thir­ties, Sean Hemp­stead was in his fifties, a Viet­nam vet­er­an and a grand­fa­ther. He was also an incred­i­ble geek. He was Seashel Pro­duc­tions IT spe­cial­ist, and would men­tion the Mac’s supe­ri­or­i­ty to the PC so reg­u­lar­ly that I thought he was per­haps receiv­ing a sec­ond pay­check from Apple.

Read more Start-Up Beat­down #5 — Joel Vs. Hemp­stead

Start-Up Beatdown #4 — How to be a Corporate Spy


Yet anoth­er chap­ter of my true life per­son­al work hell is up.  In this excit­ing episode, I am accused of being a cor­po­rate spy.  Read on!

This time, I decid­ed to put the whole chap­ter in the main page.  It’s after the Jump.  Or, if you’re a tra­di­tion­al­ist, it can be found on the menu screen at the top of the page and right here.


Read more Start-Up Beat­down #4 — How to be a Cor­po­rate Spy