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Author Topic: Does Marten have goals?  (Read 27901 times)

tomart

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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #50 on: 11 May 2011, 22:23 »

Yes, the source rules.     8-)
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #51 on: 12 May 2011, 07:28 »

Yes, the source rules.     8-)

Been lurking for a while, finally registered and I don't know if this really applies but I'm from the school of "Authorial Intent = Intentional Fallacy" if the work contradicts what the author claims it is supposed to mean (which seems to be happening here)... mainly because the only time you can even apply authorial intent is if the author bothers to express it (most don't, and those that do like to troll their readers, like Stephen King off the top of my head) and there are some pretty convincing arguments out there that a work should stand on it's own with regard to interpretations of meaning, etc...

So I have a question, can I argue from that perspective on here as long as I'm not a dick about it like Odin was, or is that not allowed? Because after reading over his post history he has posted a few opinions I agree with and I just want to make sure this board isn't that heavily moderated when it comes to posting opinions of the comic itself and the characters in it.

EDIT: The opinions I'm referencing are more along the lines of "Character X exhibits some pretty screwed up behavior Y, so is this supposed to represent Z or....?" type discussions.
« Last Edit: 12 May 2011, 07:47 by Tiogyr »
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #52 on: 12 May 2011, 07:53 »

Welcome.  There are few limits to discussion here; the rules are mainly about being civil (which is taken to include no politics or religion), and avoiding a few things that Jeph simply doesn't wish to tolerate on the forum he pays the bills for, e.g. mindless "shipping".

The two locked threads at the top of this forum give a summary (with links to the main rules), and a discussion of how moderation is applied - and these together should answer most questions.

If you wish to present views on the comic similar to Odin's, that will not in itself be unwelcome; just behave within the rules while standing up for your views, and you'll be fine.
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #53 on: 12 May 2011, 08:05 »

He'd like to have some, but life can be insidious in how you go day by day and suddenly it's been ten years and you're still working at some kind of crappy job, that is if you're not unemployed again and haven't managed to complete your degree for the effing FOURTH ATTEMPT and WTF happened to all that time.

Truer fuckin words man.
Truer f u c k i n' words.

hahahahaaaaa aw I made myself sad  :-(

But thank you for stopping by and adding your Word of God :D I'm even more excited to see where the comic goes now.
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #54 on: 12 May 2011, 08:13 »

To address the actual topic, Marten isn't really sure what his goals ARE. I'm pretty sure I've actually had him say something along these lines in the comic, actually.

 He'd like to have some, but life can be insidious in how you go day by day and suddenly it's been a year and you're still working at your crappy job and WTF happened to all that time.

I've always been a goal-oriented person, but I know lots of people in their 20s who are in Marten's situation.

So would you say that is a big contributing factor to how unhappy Marten is, or are you saying he isn't unhappy because of this and it is perfectly normal (and he's unhappy for other reasons)?
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #55 on: 12 May 2011, 09:29 »

I interpreted Jeph's answer as meaning Marten's aware he's dissatisfied but is not sure why ... Just has a vague sense there's something he oughta be doing. I found the whole Marten-meets-Dora's-folks arc (starts about 1030)  telling, in the contrast between DoraDad's catapulting himself into freelancery and Marten's "I dunno, guess I'd like to be a rock star or something ... " -- not a sentiment generally calculated to impress the father of your then-sweetie, but storywise it gave Jeph a chance to speak through DoraDad.
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #56 on: 17 May 2011, 02:38 »

http://questionablecontent.net/view.php?comic=1734 This is the comic I've been thinking of the whole time reading through this thread.

It's not directly relevant to Marten but I'd say it's the mentality of most of the QC cast. They're floating along, hoping for a bit better if it comes along but right now aren't actively going for it since they don't feel they need to do so. Sometimes good things fall into their lap (Dora coming on to Marten/Faye's commission for the Espressosaurus) or they have to work for it (Marigold coming out of her shell/Faye trying to get over her anxieties to try going out with Angus) but for now, the overall big picture is enough.
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #57 on: 17 May 2011, 03:12 »

(helloimnewhieverybody)

Yeah, but the same goes for most people.. right?

I like how Marten constantly gets by despite getting stuck in relationships that fail miserably. And if the comic was about a guy who succeeds perfectly at work, spends most of his time working his way up the career ladder and has a stable, strong relationship with his girlfriend, it wouldn't be very interesting and the I-recognize-myself-factor would be zero (on my part at least..).
But yeah, sooner or later something's gotta happen. He's gotta do something. But the comic won't go on forever, however we see it and we may never see that event.
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Tiogyr

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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #58 on: 17 May 2011, 04:10 »

Yeah, but the same goes for most people.. right?

Not really, most people still have some sort of goal they're working toward. Even if they're failing horribly at attaining it, they still have some sort of "prize" they're trying to attain in Life ranging from "I'm going to be a(n) X" where "X" can be the career they're after, from astronaut to actor/ress to "I'm going to Y" where "Y" is some activity or action they want to do before they die, like scale Mt. Everest or travel around the world.

This is the problem with Marten that seems to have started the thread. He doesn't really have any discernible long-term goal that, even if it's on hiatus right now, people can point at and say "Yep, Marten has something he wants to do with his life, he's just at a low point right now/not working on it".

People brought up Deathmole, but the problem there is that band was someone else's dream and Marten walked into it and got to join for a while, he didn't actually start the band since it existed before he came along (though he did end up getting his current library job due to his participation in the band). So, again, it wasn't a goal of his so much as something he got to join in on and enjoy for a while.

Quote
I like how Marten constantly gets by despite getting stuck in relationships that fail miserably. And if the comic was about a guy who succeeds perfectly at work, spends most of his time working his way up the career ladder and has a stable, strong relationship with his girlfriend, it wouldn't be very interesting and the I-recognize-myself-factor would be zero (on my part at least..).
But yeah, sooner or later something's gotta happen. He's gotta do something. But the comic won't go on forever, however we see it and we may never see that event.

I think the main complaint that started this thread is that Marten hasn't ever really set out on his own to accomplish anything without a lot of groundwork being laid for it by other people in his life first. Yes, a lot of people in real life are like that, but it is still slightly depressing to watch and I think that was the main thing the OP was asking to be proved wrong about before things got derailed a little bit.
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #59 on: 17 May 2011, 04:58 »

Oh, I don't know - my goals have never been any kind of individual thing, a prize, as you put it. 

I have a number of specific achievements (in my mind, if no one else's) under my belt, but none of them was ever a specific aim.  What I have had is a general urge to do stuff in certain areas, and at times I have been able to make some of this happen, with variable degrees of success.  I have not infrequently had the "what's this all about" or "isn't there more to life" feelings that Marten's had - but they pass, and I get on with whatever's to hand.  Marten's vague interest in doing more with his music, whether performing or blogging, is not much vaguer than my "goals" have been at various times, and yet forty years on from his age, I can look back and see the things that did  happen after all.
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #60 on: 17 May 2011, 05:37 »

You still took the initiative to do things, though, while the complaint here is that Marten only ever seems to do something new if someone else tells him to first.
« Last Edit: 17 May 2011, 05:40 by Tiogyr »
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idontunderstand

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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #61 on: 18 May 2011, 05:41 »

Well, I disagree that all or even most people have long-term goals. Most people I know just go with the flow. But let's leave this here..
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #62 on: 18 May 2011, 06:56 »

I think most people have goals, but they're vague - "I want to be successful", "I want to be a (fill in the blank)", "I want to have a family", etc.   The steps we take aren't always clear, though, and some of it's like a chess game - the path to success isn't clear until a few moves are made by your opponent.  If something occurs that will make our goal more likely, and we can recognize it, most of us jump at the opportunity. 

Of course, there's a lot you  can do in chess that make your opponent's moves leave you a clearer path, and IRL there are a lot of things you can do to increase the opportunities that present themselves to you. 

There's an old joke my grandfather used to tell - forgive me, but it bears repeating.  Saul prayed every night, "God, let me win the lottery!" 

One night, Saul heard a voice answer...

"Saul!" 

"God, is that you?" 

"Yes.  Saul, you want to win the lottery?" 

"Yes God, please!" 

"Saul... you have to buy a ticket."



Now, if you'll excuse me, I have some more jobs to apply for.  They're not just going to fall into my lap, after all! 
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #63 on: 19 May 2011, 06:40 »

I think my point is that there's a vast difference between goals and hopes and dreams.
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Tiogyr

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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #64 on: 19 May 2011, 06:55 »

Even if that were true, Marten still wouldn't have either.
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #65 on: 19 May 2011, 11:14 »

Marten has dreams of being a rock star, but now that you shine a light on the subject, I think you're right that Marten doesn't have hopes. That may even be the root of his problems.
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #66 on: 20 May 2011, 15:11 »

Marten has dreams of being a rock star, but now that you shine a light on the subject, I think you're right that Marten doesn't have hopes. That may even be the root of his problems.

Actually, yeah, something like that.
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #67 on: 20 May 2011, 21:25 »

Marten doesn't have any initiative whatsoever and is basically a roll-over-and-die-niceguy. Even some of the most free spirited hippies I've known have had goals and worked toward them, like "work on an alpaca farm" or "start a freeschool" or something. Marten actually has less élan vital than that. It's his defining characteristic.

And if the comic was about a guy who succeeds perfectly at work, spends most of his time working his way up the career ladder and has a stable, strong relationship with his girlfriend, it wouldn't be very interesting
Nah, I think it's entirely possible for a comic to be interesting/entertaining and feature a person who has, you know, a presence in the things that happen.
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #68 on: 20 May 2011, 22:24 »

Quote from: Theodore Roosevelt
The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly; who errs and comes short again and again; because there is not effort without error and shortcomings; but who does actually strive to do the deed; who knows the great enthusiasm, the great devotion, who spends himself in a worthy cause, who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement and who at the worst, if he fails, at least he fails while daring greatly. So that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat.
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Tiogyr

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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #69 on: 21 May 2011, 05:26 »

Are you trying to make our point for us or arguing against it? Because Marten does not, by any stretch of the imagination, fit that quote.
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #70 on: 21 May 2011, 12:09 »

The quote is intended as an eloquent argument for what Marten is not doing.
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #71 on: 22 May 2011, 21:42 »

The way I see it is Sven is a much luckier version of Marten.
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #72 on: 22 May 2011, 23:29 »

The way I see it is Sven is a much luckier version of Marten.
Now there's an interesting take, and worth more discussion.
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #73 on: 22 May 2011, 23:30 »

I'm not so sure it's luck, Sven appears to have at lease a bit of song-writing talent.  It's not as easy to write CW lyrics as it sounds! 
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #74 on: 22 May 2011, 23:53 »

Also, Marten has said (can't remember the strip) that he either can't write songs, or he's not very good.

Now, that is either confidence, or self awareness.
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #75 on: 23 May 2011, 00:24 »

I don't remember that one either.
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #76 on: 23 May 2011, 05:24 »

Found it: 1292

It looks like I misremembered his quote, not that he can't, but that he's not very good.
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #77 on: 23 May 2011, 07:10 »

Marten needs to start going to the coffee shops that serve this for inspiration:

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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #78 on: 23 May 2011, 07:38 »

Its the Goddamn Coffee-man! :-o
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #79 on: 23 May 2011, 12:45 »

And if the comic was about a guy who succeeds perfectly at work, spends most of his time working his way up the career ladder and has a stable, strong relationship with his girlfriend, it wouldn't be very interesting
Nah, I think it's entirely possible for a comic to be interesting/entertaining and feature a person who has, you know, a presence in the things that happen.

Well, fine, I agree. But on the top of my head, I can't think of a single one. One of the many things I like about QC is that the whole cast is basically a bunch of fucking losers in one way or another, much reminiscent of myself and the people I hang with. And who the hell do you think sits working at the 7-11 for 6 years in a row just because they don't think more of themselves than that, because they are afraid to fail, afraid to succeed, or because they're just plain lazy? They're people like you and me, I tell you. And they can still be interesting, fascinating even. They might have the greatest conversations with their friends, play guitar in the coolest bands, write amazing stuff on PostIt notes etc. It's like that Neil Gaiman quote, which I can't recall exactly but it went something like.. "every person, no matter how bland or grey they seem, has an inner universe of thoughts, emotions and imagination". This resonates very strongly with me. What the fuck are goals worth, anyway? And is that really Martens problem? Who says Marten has problems? What makes everyone so sure? He's an interesting character and really likeable, that's all I know.

Yikes, all that text and nothing makes sense.. don't take me too literally please.
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #80 on: 23 May 2011, 13:56 »

No, no, I think you've made an interesting point.  Every generation has its "lost" generation, becase everyone goes through something similar to this at about the same time.  Some "get over it" faster than others, but I think it hapens to a large nyumber of people, and if it's happening to the people you hang with at about the same time, it can really become a self-perpetuating kind of thing. 

It's also part of what makes the comic appealing - we all recognize a bit of ourselves in at least some of the characters - meek Marten, Brash Faye, loopy Hannelore - we all have seen the "WOW, I'm just like that" or "I have a friend who's just like that" posts in here. 
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #81 on: 23 May 2011, 14:30 »

I'm not so sure it's luck, Sven appears to have at lease a bit of song-writing talent.  It's not as easy to write CW lyrics as it sounds! 
How is having talent different from being lucky?  You don't earn talent, it's just something you have.  If that's not luck, I don't know what is.
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #82 on: 23 May 2011, 19:52 »

Marten's dissatisfaction with his life goes back to strips 3 and 11.
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #83 on: 23 May 2011, 21:41 »

For the record, I have removed a number of posts that were only discussion of moderation decisions; they added nothing to the topic, in my view.
dictator dictator revolt revolt!
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #84 on: 24 May 2011, 02:23 »

How is having talent different from being lucky?  You don't earn talent, it's just something you have.  If that's not luck, I don't know what is.
[/quote]

You do have to work at a talent to improve it or keep it sharp though, which Sven probably does with personal practice. Even if he had a natural knack for writing songs, he probably had to work to learn guitar and has to practice to stay good at and get gigs.
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #85 on: 24 May 2011, 06:06 »

Well, fine, I agree. But on the top of my head, I can't think of a single one. One of the many things I like about QC is that the whole cast is basically a bunch of fucking losers in one way or another, much reminiscent of myself and the people I hang with. And who the hell do you think sits working at the 7-11 for 6 years in a row just because they don't think more of themselves than that, because they are afraid to fail, afraid to succeed, or because they're just plain lazy? They're people like you and me, I tell you. And they can still be interesting, fascinating even. They might have the greatest conversations with their friends, play guitar in the coolest bands, write amazing stuff on PostIt notes etc. It's like that Neil Gaiman quote, which I can't recall exactly but it went something like.. "every person, no matter how bland or grey they seem, has an inner universe of thoughts, emotions and imagination". This resonates very strongly with me. What the fuck are goals worth, anyway? And is that really Martens problem? Who says Marten has problems? What makes everyone so sure? He's an interesting character and really likeable, that's all I know.

Yikes, all that text and nothing makes sense.. don't take me too literally please.

I'd like to know how you can reference Neil Gaiman while trying to counterpoint this specific discussion and come up with the "I can't think of a single one" sentence, there.  :psyduck:
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #86 on: 24 May 2011, 09:52 »

It's not like alcohol and coffee are cheap, so he's probably spending all his money on rent (city rent is not cheap) and alcohol/coffee, saving no money for his future, or for anything really.

For better or for worse, this describes most twentysomethings in North America. Whether we have goals or not, we're tend to drift and not really know how to achieve many of our more long-term goals. Men raised by women. Fight Club. Marten is Ed Norton.
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #87 on: 24 May 2011, 13:08 »

You do have to work at a talent to improve it or keep it sharp though, which Sven probably does with personal practice. Even if he had a natural knack for writing songs, he probably had to work to learn guitar and has to practice to stay good at and get gigs.
Except he doesn't.  As far as I can tell, he writes whatever cheesy songs he can think of, and they sell like crazy, and Dora said that when he was younger, he'd just coast through school.  Am I faulting him?  No!  But I can hardly consider him not extremely lucky.
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #88 on: 24 May 2011, 13:11 »

You do have to work at a talent to improve it or keep it sharp though, which Sven probably does with personal practice. Even if he had a natural knack for writing songs, he probably had to work to learn guitar and has to practice to stay good at and get gigs.
Except he doesn't.  As far as I can tell, he writes whatever cheesy songs he can think of, and they sell like crazy, and Dora said that when he was younger, he'd just coast through school.  Am I faulting him?  No!  But I can hardly consider him not extremely lucky.

People usually are disparaging of talent they are jealous of, though. Sven must be a pretty decent stage performer on the small time gig scene, too, which is a point other people seem to be forgetting (given the few strips where reactions to one of Svens gigs were given).
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idontunderstand

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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #89 on: 24 May 2011, 15:44 »

No, no, I think you've made an interesting point.  Every generation has its "lost" generation, becase everyone goes through something similar to this at about the same time.  Some "get over it" faster than others, but I think it hapens to a large nyumber of people, and if it's happening to the people you hang with at about the same time, it can really become a self-perpetuating kind of thing. 

It's also part of what makes the comic appealing - we all recognize a bit of ourselves in at least some of the characters - meek Marten, Brash Faye, loopy Hannelore - we all have seen the "WOW, I'm just like that" or "I have a friend who's just like that" posts in here. 

Thank you for understanding me, tell me how you did it..  :psyduck:
But yeah, that's my point. I recognize myself in Marten and the others for their inability to adapt to their inability to adapt to.. society/cult of the winner/capitalist greed/etc. You said it better than me though.

I'd like to know how you can reference Neil Gaiman while trying to counterpoint this specific discussion and come up with the "I can't think of a single one" sentence, there.  :psyduck:

With a two-by-four and a fish slapping dance. No really. What do you mean?
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Tiogyr

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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #90 on: 24 May 2011, 18:38 »

I mean that every single thing Neil Gaiman has ever done is full of interesting, compelling characters with long term goals and aspirations with varying degrees of success at achieving them (and even if those goals and aspirations aren't crystal clear at the beginning, they still act with a definitive sense of purpose until you discover what they're after).

You should have went with somebody like, I don't know, Stephanie Meyer or something, if you were going for the "I can't think of a single story with compelling characterizations" argument.
« Last Edit: 24 May 2011, 18:39 by Tiogyr »
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #91 on: 24 May 2011, 19:13 »

Having goals is not necessarily the same thing as having mainstream goals.
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #92 on: 24 May 2011, 20:10 »

One of the posters on this thread referenced the Faye/Angus comic where they were at dinner discussing their childhood goals and why they never achieved them. Quite frankly, achieving dreams and goals can be hard-too hard for some people.

For example, Angus mentioned wanting to become a comedy actor, and going to some auditions then quitting after getting no roles out of them. Meanwhile, think of your favorite movie/TV star, and their biography. It's most likely going to involve years of struggling in obscurity in minor, even uncredited roles, having to take a waiter job or something similarly low paid while waiting on a paid acting gig, and subsisting on Ramen during those years of struggle, until finally getting the role or roles that made their careers. Can you blame Angus for looking at this likely path and saying "forget this, I'm doing something else"? Especially since achieving stardom, or even just steady acting work, is by no means even close to guaranteed?

And even after you achieve your dream, then what? Assuming your able to hold on to it of course-how many famous entertainers have torpedoed their careers with drug and alcohol abuse and other stupid lifestyle choices? And how about the ones who stopped getting calls for gigs because they got too old, or fat, or something like that?

And you don't even have to be striving to be a famous entertainer to risk losing your dream-how many people in this recession seem to have achieved their American Dream of the rising career, house in the suburbs, marriage and family only to lose it all after being downsized? I believe a poster in this very thread has mentioned going through something like that. That happens to you, or maybe you're a young person growing up seeing that happen to your parents or friend's parents or other adult relatives, and you start to question whether the Dream is even worth trying.

Marten and those in his circle may end up as "cold timid souls" who haven't achieved much in life by many poster's standards, but then again they don't have much to lose either. Sometimes, just being able to support yourself, and maintain a small circle of friends, is enough. Tai said as much to Marten several strips ago, and the only difference between then and now is Marten doesn't have the girlfriend anymore. Which, considering the trouble romantic relationships can bring into one's life, might not be such a bad thing.
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #93 on: 24 May 2011, 21:20 »

That (kinda) was me that had referred to the "downsizing".

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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #94 on: 25 May 2011, 03:37 »

I mean that every single thing Neil Gaiman has ever done is full of interesting, compelling characters with long term goals and aspirations with varying degrees of success at achieving them (and even if those goals and aspirations aren't crystal clear at the beginning, they still act with a definitive sense of purpose until you discover what they're after).

You should have went with somebody like, I don't know, Stephanie Meyer or something, if you were going for the "I can't think of a single story with compelling characterizations" argument.

But I fucking hate twilight!  :wink:

And I never said "I can't think of a single story with compelling characterizations". Don't put words in my mouth.
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Tiogyr

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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #95 on: 25 May 2011, 03:52 »

I mean that every single thing Neil Gaiman has ever done is full of interesting, compelling characters with long term goals and aspirations with varying degrees of success at achieving them (and even if those goals and aspirations aren't crystal clear at the beginning, they still act with a definitive sense of purpose until you discover what they're after).

You should have went with somebody like, I don't know, Stephanie Meyer or something, if you were going for the "I can't think of a single story with compelling characterizations" argument.

But I fucking hate twilight!  :wink:

And I never said "I can't think of a single story with compelling characterizations". Don't put words in my mouth.

Yeah, sorry, you said "I can't think of a single one" in response to someone posting about how it is entirely possible for a comic to have a successful character that plays a meaningful role in things, then mention the author of the Sandman and Murder Mysteries and who is responsible for the creation of the Lucifer spin-off comics (all of which, especially that last one, feature some pretty motivated characters).
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Carl-E

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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #96 on: 25 May 2011, 06:38 »

idontunderstand also said,

Yikes, all that text and nothing makes sense.. don't take me too literally please.

So, there you have it. 
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Tiogyr

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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #97 on: 25 May 2011, 07:39 »

idontunderstand also said,

Yikes, all that text and nothing makes sense.. don't take me too literally please.

So, there you have it. 

I was just pointing out what I thought was a funny line of argument to take, is all.
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #98 on: 25 May 2011, 12:31 »

My experience in life has been that pursuing something wholeheartedly pays off, sometimes in a completely unexpected way that has nothing to do with the original goal.
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Re: Does Marten have goals?
« Reply #99 on: 25 May 2011, 12:59 »

Kind of how Marten fled east for all the wrong reasons, but ended up with a decent life and plenty of good friends because of it?
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