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Saturday | April 1st, 2023
TODAY'S COMIC: Moose River 2023

If you want to see fresh Moose River material, swing by my Instagram account! I really should be posting them here as well… but no one really visits the site, so I’m in no rush.

That said, I did want to at least post this picture here to the site, in case anyone visiting wanted to see what everyone looks like today, and what 15-plus years has done to them. I definitely plan on explaining those stories… like why Betty’s left eye looks bad, and why Avery is in jail… but I’ll get to that later.

THE BJÖURNAL: Daily News Du Jour

Uh… hello again!

March 19th, 2023

Hello friends, welcome back. Uh… sorry for disappearing! But the site is back up. The comic may be “old” but I still think it’s a good read!

So what the heck happened?! Well my copy of WordPress was grossly out of date, and when my server auto-updated its version of PHP, it knocked the site out. And since I’ve been focused primarily on maintaining my Pokémon website, this site kinda fell by the wayside. But lemme fill you in on what I’ve been up to lately!

Back in 2019 I had this awakening moment where I was suddenly thrust into this creative spell where I simply could NOT stop doing art. I was compelled to write new Moose River stories as well as finish off some random one-shots I wrote. But after a few months of that… I later decided that my artistic energies were better spent on rebuilding my Pokémon website, Pokémon Aaah!, which honestly was the better decision. That site is getting between 50-150 hits a day (depending on how the Google algorithm wishes to bless my efforts), which is still waaaay more than Moose River ever got on a regular basis. Sorry, I gotta go where the money’s at! In the mean time, that’s when the Moose River website went down and I simply didn’t have the energy to bring it back up.

Around this time the whole human malware thing happened, which basically made me unemployed… so at least I was able to get some unemployment assistance to ride me out from the pandemic. Also around this time my parents had retired, sold my childhood house in Daly City and were planning to move to Sacramento… so I decided to say fuck it and tagged along. Honestly unemployment does a pretty good job of limiting your choices in life, but whatever, I ain’t gonna complain about free rent. This worked out because I managed to get a new full time job in 2021 at Prestwood IT Solutions… and so I’ve just been spending my time trying to dig my ass out of debt and eventually get a home of my own and all that.

INCIDENTALLY! A couple weeks ago I once again had another artistic kick-in-the-ass where I felt compelled to draw more Moose River comics… but with the site down, I’ve been posting them all in my Instagram account. Like last time, I’ve been trying my best to keep this spark alive… but last time the spark disappeared due to … personal matters which are no longer an issue right now (at least not in the same way). I’ve actually been more productive, artistically, than last time. It inspired me to actually write up a script for a new story (“Emo Discovered AI Chat”)… but you all should know me by now that I’m TERRIBLE at keeping a schedule, so I’m just gonna see what happens.

“Moose River VR” won’t be a thing, sadly… doing “VR comics” is much more complicated than I care to explore, and now that I’m working full time, my actual ability to produce artwork is extremely limited. So I’m gonna stick with doing whatever random art I can do until I feel confident to pull off a new story from scratch. Likewise I’m not gonna bother with any significant social media postings outside of Instagram. Pokémon Aaah! will remain my primary artistic bread-and-butter, but I’ll indulge on new Moose River posts now and again.

In that case, over the next few days or so, I’m gonna repost the art and comics I shared on my Instagram… I’m still gonna make that my primary location for new artwork, but I’ll still post them here. Maybe I’ll post even more saucier versions here??

Anyways, this site is still here, and is here to stay (if I have anything to say about it). I am grateful for your continued interest and support after nearly 20 years of reading about these characters and learning more about their lives. I love them and I hope to never see them die.

NOTE: I’m glad I still have all my original files for these pages… cuz like, I’m reading it again and while it all still holds up today, SOME of the language is a bit off. Basically I need to update them to be a bit more subtle and/or less “laying it on too thick”.

Betty & Jorge’s Story: Complete! (According to AI)

September 21st, 2019

I have SO MUCH story left to write, but I have so little time do write in in. In particular, I never got around to finishing Betty’s story with Jorge… and I’m worried that the three most obvious possible endings are, well, obvious.

But fear not! I’ve decided to let an AI finish the story for me. I found this cool online utility called “Talk To Transformer“, which claims to use “modern neural network” in order to complete a piece of text that start off with. After inputting some basic facts of Betty and Jorge’s story, it finished it off for me, and I couldn’t be happier. THE FOLLOWING IS OFFICIALLY CANON!

DAMMIT! WHAT DOES SHE SAY?! Shit, looks like I’ll have to write the story myself afterall!

Seriously though, this utility created a few gems. These include:

  • Jorge, CEO of Durochi Tech, started dating Betty, Valedictorian of their high school Class of 1967. She treated him like trash, but he seems to have forgiven her. Now they’ve been dating for about a year, and Jorge asked Betty to marry him. She says yes. He tells the reader that she was very young at the time and is “just one of those girls that have to learn how to be a little bit different in this world.” Jorge then gives her a bouquet of flowers, one of which says, “Congratulations to you Betty, great girl!”
    The next chapter tells of what happened when Jorge had his marriage proposal. He finds out that Valedictorian, he now refers to as Betty, went up to the stage manager and complained to him about how she was “taking all those boys away from me.” The man tells her that if she doesn’t like it then she could just walk away, but she just walked away. They then get married when Valedictor asks permission and Jorge gives him the wedding ring (of Betty’s) saying “This is the best wedding I
  • Jorge, CEO of Durochi Tech, started dating Betty, Valedictorian of their high school Class of 1967. She treated him like trash, but he seems to have forgiven her. Now they’ve been dating for about a year, and Jorge asked Betty to marry him. She says yes. Jorge asks her to do the same for him, which she agrees to. Jorge and Betty soon find out that Betty has a thing for a boy who looks like him… the boy who wears his hair in a bun and is nicknamed El Barrio. The story is told in the form of a true-life soap opera as Betty and Jorge try to help El Barrio get what he wants out of life: to be able to leave his bun in the shed, but then marry a girl named Marisol and live a long life in the sun. Written by Anonymous
  • Jorge, CEO of Durochi Tech, started dating Betty, Valedictorian of their high school Class of 1967. She treated him like trash, but he seems to have forgiven her. Now they’ve been dating for about a year, and Jorge asked Betty to marry him. She says yes. The two have been married for four years.Betty was born in a small town of El Salvador. Her parents took her after her birth to an orphanage because she was very small. The orphanage was run by Catholic missionaries, and the orphans lived in tiny rooms with tiny windows. Betty had to go to school through the school of the nuns. Later, through an orphanage in Mexico, she met an orphanage worker, Rafael, who taught her all he knew about technology. Betty remembers that Rafael introduced her to computers. After about four years, the two decided to live in the US.
    Betty is not the only person with the same name. Other people with the same name have met Jorge in the years that have passed since their first meeting. They met during the early 2000s when a group of young
  • Jorge, CEO of Durochi Tech, started dating Betty, Valedictorian of their high school Class of 1967. She treated him like trash, but he seems to have forgiven her. Now they’ve been dating for about a year, and Jorge asked Betty to marry him. She says yes. Then she sees news that the Supreme Court has ruled that all the gay couples must be treated as second-class citizens.
    It turns out a high-school student wrote her a letter proposing marriage, and if there were a civil union, she could get married in the end.
    Now a man in Texas, Carlos, is trying to do the same thing. In the last few years, he’s created a website where people can create web pages that have identical text, but which are formatted in different ways to accommodate different genders, religious beliefs, political views, sexual orientation, and so on. Carlos and Betty started dating when Carlos was working during the summer, and after Carlos learned of the Supreme Court ruling, he decided he couldn’t continue with his work. Now they’re trying to come to an agreement with the government.

Wow, I didn’t realize Betty lived such an amazing, progressive life! Not bad for someone who’s been working at a sloppy diner for the past 20 years!

Minor site fix

September 1st, 2019

Another thing that has changed quite a bit over the last ten years has been the little nuances in web design. Back in the day, because sites were basically designed on a per-pixel basis, or at least web browsers interpret HTML code in pixels, I could just place site elements in a certain way and I’d never need to worry about how it’ll look when the page is resized. And that’s IF anyone needs to resize the webpage; if I did my job right as a web designer, the page should look fine on any computer, whether Mac OR Windows (lol linux).

But now webdesign is almost like document design, where web browsers can render elements smaller than one pixel, as if it treats webpages as if they are rendered at 400 dpi or something. This is further complicated by the different ways various devices can render a webpage, whether viewing it on a mobile device, or a computer with a Retina Display (ie 1 regular pixel = 4 “retina” pixels), or if they simply want to view the webpage at some percentage which subsequently resizes graphics to an freaky size (32 pixels * 133% = 42.56 pixels).

Basically I need to worry about how my page will look. A perfect example is how the “corners” of the main text area were rendered. This is what they’re supposed to look like (and have looked like back in the day):

But this is how modern web browsers rendered them:

What’s happening is that, since the 30 x 32px corner elements are being tiled in the 30 x 32px area I’ve allotted to them… but at larger scales web browers are resizing both of those 30 x 32px elements to something like 49.8 x 53.12 pixels, and so the web browser is throwing in 0.8 pixels x 0.12 pixels worth of the tiled copies of the graphics.

Basically it’s a needlessly complex situation that never would’ve happened in the past. So my solution was to basically not only turn off the tiling, but also expand the corner graphics a few extra pixels, such that if the web browser feels the need to include an additional 0.8 pixels x 0.12 pixels of the graphic, it’ll throw in the extra bits that I planned for it to see such.

To put it in simpler terms, with the original corner graphic on the left and the updated graphic on the right:

Hopefully this makes sense.

Sorry if this was long a boring… but hey, I gotta populate this site with SOMETHING! (I know, I know, I’ll work on some more comics soon!)

Page Updates

August 25th, 2019

OK so one of the things I’ve been wanting to do for some time was update my pages, partially to undo the “3×2” format they’re all in (which makes them look like junk on mobile) but to also just clean them up in general.

Well I’ve done some of them already! I’m not necessarily doing them in order, but they mostly will be in order. That that I’ll focus on which ones I think are more worth updating before others.

The pages which I’ve updated are:
* Page 001
* Page 003
* Page 004
* Page 006

Page 006 was perhaps the most difficult of them all so far (though maybe overall to boot), as I had to remove the “line shading” I did on it. The line shading was something that has ALWAYS bothered me, and I FINALLY got around to fixing it once and for all. Here’s a quick before-and-after animation showing the changes I made to it, as well as an example of the kind of “remastering” I’m doing with the older pages.

Pretty nifty remastering, huh? I’m hoping to the same with the entire archive… though definitely not before I work on ACTUAL new comics. I don’t want to spend more time fixing the past than writing the future… but if I can do both, I will.

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Moose River
by Philippe Van Lieu
—Fully Charged - June 27th, 2019—

From the bottom of my heart (and the bottom of this page): thank you very much for reading my comics.

Nick15, all related subjects, and all text are ©1996-2019 Philippe Van Lieu
All else are copyright of their respective owners. Used without permission. Dang.