“Build me a prototype, dear.”

Alan and I have a plan for Planet Mercenary Game Chief screens, and it involves building something more modular, expandable, and ultimately more useful than the traditional tri-fold (or quad- or quint-fold) screen that has become the industry standard.

I bought some plastic clips and some comic book backing board, envisioned what I wanted, and ran into a conflict. I wanted to spend several hours making comics today, AND I wanted to spend several hours building a really cool prototype.

My twenty-year-old daughter Keliana, home from school where she’s majoring in illustration, was awake and exploring breakfast options in the kitchen.

“Hey, K. Can you build a thing for me?”

“What kind of thing?”

“You’ll need the mat cutter, some spray paint, my hot-wire knife, my sculpting tools, and probably tape and glue. I want to make this—” I pointed at the stack of backing board and clips “—look like this. ” I held a map pin up at the corner of the screen of my Chromebook.

“Okay, I can see it…” she said.

“I’ll make a steak quesadilla for your breakfast, and you’re on the clock for whatever Mom’s paying you as of the word ‘go.'”

“Tenderloin steak?”

“And green chiles, fresh tortillas, and green onion.”


As I write this, Keliana is upstairs taking a hot-wire knife to some clips that are *almost* the right shape. We’ve finished off the quesadilla, and now I can dive into making comics while reveling in the fact that a minion who once was barely useful enough to do dishes can now be handed a complex project, and can trusted to make it beautiful.

It’s been a long time coming. Also, we had to increase her allowance to the point that she gets a W2 at the end of the year.

(originally posted at howardtayler.com)

7 thoughts on ““Build me a prototype, dear.””

  1. Because I know you’ll ask: the tenderloin is Willamette Valley Tenderloin Roast, which I buy as a roast, and then (after thoroughly washing all the surfaces that will be involved) slice into steaks and layer, with salt and pepper, in a Tupperware container in the fridge.

    It keeps for a week, getting better and better with time until it goes gamey. We’re on day five right now, and it is really, really good.

    1. You get to make us drool over the RPG or food, not both sir. That’s just not fair.

    2. Perhaps one of the Kickstarter reward levels should be “Next time you’re in town and schedules permit, Howard will cook you lunch.”

      I’m hungry now, Howard. That sounds soooooooooo good.
      If you wanted to be evil, you should feature even more of your recipes in-comic. I *still* want a chupaqueso after all these years, but all of my attempts to create one of my own have ended in utter disaster.

      1. The secret to a chupaqueso is to let the initial (outer) layer of cheese to cook low and slow, much longer than you think it should. It has to transition thru the melty stage back to the sem-solid stage (almost “burned”). Low and slow lets you cook it and cook it without burning it until it solidifies, and then you can add the other cheese and fold it over.

        If at first you don’t succeed, try try again. It’s worth it.

      1. Yup, form provided by an employer to an employee documenting income and amount withheld to pay taxes.

        I’m very much looking forward to the Game Cheif screen now. The breakfast sounded pretty good as well :-)

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