Jack Ohman

Editorial cartoonist, writer and Joe King’s alter ego

iHate technology: it's why iDraw cartoons...

07/16/2013 6:05 PM

07/16/2013 6:16 PM

As a highly trained editorial cartoonist with a liberal arts degree, I am called upon to employ cutting-edge technology in the execution of my craft.

-- Ink, for example.

-- Flattened out pieces of bleached wood pulp

-- Wooden sticks with animal hair (sable) on the end. You know, the things that got this country to the moon.

So when I am forced to actually dip my toes in the new technology (IBM Selectrics seem cool to me, still), I start to get a little stressed. Recently, for example ...

1. I had to purchase a new iPhone because my old one had a cracked screen, upload all my content into iCloud, which took my 40,000 photographs and put them somewhere in the asteroid belt, replaced them with photos I hadn't seen in 18 months, and somehow put all 2,062 of my Facebook followers and their birthdays into my calendar. 

2. I had to purchase a new iPad (64K or mg or km or mb, I'm not sure -- it's the $64K question) and download a program called "SketchClub." The first rule of SketchClub is that you don't talk about how SketchClub will allow you to make a stunning drawing very quickly, and then not be able to upload into your photo library, which is where I need to send my stunning drawing so it won't load into YouTube or Facebook. I tried everything, including my new iPad Ball Peen Hammer Interface app.

3. During all this, I had to buy a rebuilt car engine, sight unseen over my iPhone, which will replace my old (81K or mg or km or lbs. mileage) engine, which turned into a piece of molten aluminum on I-80 on July 4 at 5:30 p.m., in 104 degree heat. My fireworks show was under my hood, and I missed it. Oooooo. Ahhhhh.

4. I'm very angry about the engine.

5. I gave a guy my fax number today, and he kept sending the fax to my iPhone, which kept ringing while I was trying to draw a cartoon. 

6. I'm also bitter about the engine. Did I mention this?

7. When watching the Home Run Derby on ESPN last night, the cable service just stopped for three minutes. Twice. During the Cespedes part where he was about to win. My son then told me an anecdote about Steve Jobs he had just read in the Walter Isaacson book. While on his deathbed, Steve Jobs calls up Brian Roberts, the CEO of Comcast, just to tell him Comcast sucks.

8. Roberts expresses surprise.

9. I wouldn't have.

10. While finishing my cartoon, late, because of the various technological failures I had endured, I noted that my MacBook Pro was running very slowly because I had Photoshop and iMovie open at the same time. Functions that took one second dragged out into 30 seconds. Thirty seconds is a long time when you have to get done by 5 pm. I finished my cartoon at 4:56.

11. I just noticed my iPhone is dead.

12. I am going to go get a job in a flower shop.

13. I am about to hit "Save" on this column.

14. Wish me luck.

About This Blog

Jack Ohman joined The Sacramento Bee in 2013. He previously worked at the Oregonian, the Detroit Free Press and the Columbus Dispatch. His work is syndicated to more than 200 newspapers by Tribune Media Services. Jack has won the Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award, the Scripps Foundation Award and the national SPJ Award, and he was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in 2012 and the Herblock Prize in 2013. Contact Jack at johman@sacbee.com. Twitter: @JACKOHMAN.


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