Friday, July 15, 2016

Free Hugs!

In the midst of so much turmoil going on in the world today, a young man has made a name for himself by making a stand in a unique manner. His name is Ken Nwadike who is an athlete specializing in long distance running events.  After the Boston Marathon attack in 2013, Ken set a goal to qualify for the 2014 race. Unfortunately he failed to qualify, so he decided to be an encouragement to other runners that year by offering free hugs during the race and filming it. This became known as the Free Hugs Project.

His videos of do this at various events across the country have gone viral and he’s become an internet sensation. I applaud this young man and hope that he continues to inspire others with such a simple and selfless act of love.

His project reminded me of a young lady that I met at the Orlando MegaCon Convention in 2010 who was doing the exact same thing. I never got her name but was so impressed with this adorable girl’s spirit and sweet demeanor.

It’s amazing how the most basic of actions and behaviors can make the most impact in people’s lives.

Adrian “Asia” Petty is an independent comic book publisher and director at Jericho Projects, Inc. Find out more about our books at and like us on Facebook at

Tuesday, April 26, 2016


Rude Boy

I used that as a screen name years ago when I first started going online. Some people assumed it was a statement on my personality. Others assumed that I was paying homage to the reggae/ska culture. In actuality, it was neither. It was an homage to a name bestowed back in the 80’s on one of my favorite musical artists. Prince.

It’s been a few days since the announcement of his death and I’ve had some time to reflect on this. I’ve been a fan of Prince since my early teens years and now I’m circling 50 (I have no issues with my age). More than that, I have been an admirer. Even though I am not a musician, I considered him to be an artistic mentor. The way that he approached his art created such a revolution (pun intended). The things that you weren’t supposed to be able to do, Prince dived into head first. Jazz, Rock, R and B, rap, funk, psychedelic and New Wave genres weren’t supposed to blend together. Someone forgot to give that memo to Prince. And if they had, I’m sure that it would’ve ended up in the royal dumpster along with all the other preconceived notions about how an artist should approach creativity.

This year of 2016 has been a tough one for the crossing over of talented musicians. We lost Maurice White from Earth, Wind and Fire, David Bowie, Phife Dawg from Tribe called Quest, Paul Kanter from Jefferson Airplane, Merle Haggard, Glenn Frey from the Eagles and Denise Matthews aka Vanity to name some of them. It seems that the era of artists that relied on talent and will and not studio tricks and made up image is slowly becoming a thing of the past.

Yet, the loss of Prince hit me especially hard. I devoured his music. The poster from the Purple Rain album hung on my wall. I memorized lyrics and played his songs over and over. Just when you would get comfortable with one musical style, the next year, you got something totally different. I even had a teen crush on Lisa ;).

On a few occasions, his material didn’t strike a chord with me. But most of the time, he was sheer genius. I defy ANY artist these days to create a masterpiece like Sign of the Times, The Gold Experience or LoveSexy. An interview with him, which was rare, was like watching a CBS Special Presentation from the 70’s. It didn’t happen that often and when it did, I was GLUED to it. I wrote my journals in “Prince” speak in the 11th grade (nowadays called chat speak). I even wore eyeliner to high school on a couple of occasions to be like him.

My late teen years were a lonely and rough time. I had my art, my immediate family, my music and not much else that was positive. That lyric from Queen’s Radio Gaga was one of the first thing that came in my head:

I'd sit alone and watch your light
My only friend through teenage nights
And everything I had to know
I heard it on my radio

When I considered that lyric, it occurred to me why I am so devastated by this. I considered Prince to be a friend. Not in a weird stalker way as I had never met the man. But someone who expressed himself in his craft in unusual and eclectic manners while fiercely guarding his privacy. I could relate to that. I could also grasp onto his delving about the varying topics of spirituality, sexuality, heartbreak and politics. He helped me to understand that it was OK to be different and do what I do. Sometimes, you can’t meet people where they are. Sometimes, they have to come around to you. And with the MANY artists that took inspiration from him, many did come around to his way of thinking.

There will be a new city with streets of gold
The young so educated they never grow old
And a, there will be no death 4 with every breath
The voice of many colors sings a song
That's so bold
Sing it while we watch them fall

All 7 and we'll watch them fall
They stand in the way of love
And we will smoke them all
With an intellect and a savoir-faire
No one in the whole universe
Will ever compare
I am yours now and u are mine
And together we'll love through
All space and time, so don't cry
One day all 7 will die

Prince - lyrics from the song 7

RIP to his Royal Badness.

Adrian “Asia” Petty is an independent comic book publisher and director at Jericho Projects, Inc. Find out more about our books at and like us on Facebook at

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Amy Winehouse

THAT name brings up some interesting thoughts for anyone familiar with her work, no doubt.

I’ve had some time to mull over a documentary that I saw a couple of weeks ago about Amy Winehouse simply entitled “Amy”. First off, the filmmaking itself was brilliant. It was engaging, thought provoking and well researched with plenty of first hand footage of this troubled and ultra talented artist and the people that surrounded her. I will admit that I had some preconceived notions about her prior to watching it. After watching it, I still believe that she was her own worst enemy in terms of the extremely poor choices that she made.

However, that being said, I will also say that a few of the toxic people around her didn’t help her cause. This miserable girl living this tragic life had an obvious addiction issue and not just with drugs and alcohol. When you are in drowning, you need your loved ones to throw you a life preserver, not an anchor. Sadly, the very people that she should have been able to run to for help were the same people that aided in her ultimate downfall. She was enabled and used by people in codependent relationships to the point that she died in that big gated house by herself. Very sad.

The people that you bond with matter because whether you realize it or not, you are a reflection of them and vice versa. It matters if you are helping each other up or helping each other down.

May Jah bless you all.


Friday, October 30, 2015

The Bad, the Worse and the Disgusting

I had taken a break from blogging as this topic was coming up and I didn’t want to write about it. But I needed to write about it. Writing about personal rants and challenges are one thing but demons are another.

One day last year, I was out at a park on my part time job as a delivery person for a moon walk company working with a coworker.  It was a particularly hot day and I was anxious to get my work done and retreat to the cool air conditioning in the truck and a cold Power Ade. The work that we do is not glamorous at all. It’s sweaty, dirty, heavy and many times thankless. But we do what we must do.

On this particular day as we were making a pick up, a young man probably in his late twenties early thirties was walking by and observed us. He was a pale skinned, pre maturely balding man in tennis shorts, sneakers, t-shirt, back pack with a bandana tied around his neck a la Fred style from Scooby Doo.

He offered to help us moving some of the equipment advising us of his strength. We said nothing as he bent down and picked up a blower. Walking with this piece of equipment to the truck, he informed us with a slurred and slow speech about a person that he knew was secretly training him to be a Navy Seal.

Ummm, what???

After this person moved one blower to the truck, he was exhausted. In a gracious manner, he thanked us and went on his way. I was thankful that he left and simply didn’t want to be bothered. As I fashioned my mouth to say something unpleasant, my coworker said to me, “He reminds me of people that I know that have Downs.”

That one statement filled me with shame.

I have worked in the Special Olympics. I volunteered with mentally and physically challenged people in school. I knew the signs. Why didn’t I see it this time? What was wrong with me?

This unpleasant memory was brought back to me upon reading a story about Madeline Stuart. She is 18 years old and is the only professional model in the world with Down syndrome. What’s fascinating and encouraging is that she is not a token in any sense of the word. This girl walks down the runway with top of the line models and does high level print work. She watches her weight and conducts herself as a professional.

Others have criticized her. Some say that she’s being exploited while others are concerned about her being shown in a “sexual” manner, as if somehow this is reflecting her in a light that she may not be able to comprehend.

Well, haters gonna hate.

Telling someone that they shouldn’t do something because of your own preconceived notions of their limitations is the fault of the speaker. Not the person doing it. Beauty and ability comes in all different types of packages. And no one, certainly not me, has the right to limit someone’s aspirations whether they want to roll up a moon walk or swing down the cat walk.

You better work, girl!


Adrian “Asia” Petty is an independent comic book publisher and director at Jericho Projects, Inc. Find out more about our books at and like us on Facebook at

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Take Two (again)

This past weekend, my wife and I went to see Everest, which is a film based on a true story about a group of people who sought to climb this mountain in 1996 but only one returned. How was it? Ehh, it was 'aiight'.

As with all movies, there were previews. The moment one such preview started airing, my eyes started rolling the moment that I heard one of the characters referred to by name.

Johnny Utah

Yes, I am speaking of the remake of that adrenaline fueled Keanu Reeves and Patrick Swayze cult classic film, Point Break.

Personally, I am a fan of Point Break. Whenever it’s on, I immediately go into man mode. I plop down on the couch, want my drink, my chips and I look at the coffee table in front of me thinking, where is my woman? My sandwich ain’t gonna make itself.

(Alright, so that last comment wasn’t totally true.)

My point is that I enjoyed that movie for what it was and still is. A flick for guys (and some ladies as well) who like lots of action, a basic plot line and an odd frenemy dynamic running throughout the tale. It allows the viewer to put your mind on cruise control and quote classic lines.

“I don’t care! You gotta go down! It’s gotta be that way!”

But there’s a point when you need to move beyond the past. I don’t need to tell you how many times Hollywood continues to try and capture lightning in a bottle over and over by regurgitating the narratives over and over (Usually with less than stellar results).Why do they do this? I have a theory that fits along with human nature in general.


The unknown is risky, so sticking with what we know feels more comfortable, easy and doing it again makes sense. If it worked in the past, we feel that we should get the same results in the future. Perhaps, we can make it better. Maybe we simply feel that this is as good as it will ever get. 

So, we stick to what we know. From the kid that stays alone on a Friday night because he can’t ask someone out, to the person that won’t leave the abusive relationship, to the bad habit that we refuse to break, to the multi-million dollar movie company that tweaks a few items here and there on a film for that “updated” twist to present the same story that you’ve already seen. It’s all based in the same thing. Fear.

There are way too many fresh ideas out there to ignore. There are way too many innovative scripts that will never be heard. I've seen just a fraction of them in the independent circles of people that I know. The stories are there. But the desire to move beyond a comfort zone is simply NOT there for many.

What if we lived in a world, or lived a life where we believed that “No Fear” sticker that was so popular a few years ago? What would we lose? What would we gain? Just a thought ;)


Adrian “Asia” Petty is an independent comic book publisher and director at Jericho Projects, Inc. Find out more about our books at and like us on Facebook at

Monday, September 28, 2015

The Most Beautiful Piece of Art

What constitutes the upper echelon of fine art?

I’ve thought for a good while about what I consider to be the most beautiful piece of art ever created. There are masters out there who have created absolute classics from Michelangelo to Picasso, Caravaggio to Dali, Rembrandt to De Kooning, Da Vinci to Warhol who have all done spectacular work. But after all of my musings, I've come to realize what is the most beautiful piece of art to me.

A blank sheet of paper. 

                          But there’s no art on a blank sheet of paper. Why am I saying this?

To me, that blank sheet of paper represents unlimited potential of art. Whenever I look at a blank sheet, I am excited because it can literally reflect anything that’s in the mind of the artist. Realistic or abstract, Current topics or classic subjects, nothing is off limits. It hasn’t been tainted, smeared or interpreted. It’s just there waiting. And if it doesn't turn out how you planned, there's always another sheet of blank paper there for you.

This doesn’t just apply to art but also to people. In one way or another, I would like to believe that we are all blank sheets. Regardless of where we are in life, we have the opportunity to create our own ‘blank sheet’.

There have been times where I have thought that my age is going to be a hindrance to the things that I want to accomplish. That ‘blank sheet’ thinking was put into effect for Lucille Ball, Colonel Sanders, Diamond Dallas Page and many others. Age wasn't going to stop them and won't stop me either. That blank sheet was still available to them.

What a blessed thing it is to have a blank sheet, no matter the year, time or place.


Adrian “Asia” Petty is an independent comic book publisher and director at Jericho Projects, Inc. Find out more about our books at and like us on Facebook at

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Belonging in the Gardens

This past weekend, my wife and I went to a different part of the state on a Sunday drive. We wanted to see some different scenery and drove with no particular destination in mind. It was a beautiful day that was warm enough to be out in shorts but cool enough not to sweat half to death in Georgia heat. I saw a sign that said Barnsley Gardens. Out of curiosity I decided to follow it. I have to admit that I got a bit frustrated because there was no true indication of how long it would take to get to this location from the first sign that I spotted. However, with some determination we stayed the path.

I must say that I am happy that we did.

Barnsley Gardens is a resort/golf course nestled in Adairsville, Georgia. Upon driving up to the Gardens, there was an immediate feeling of discomfort by both of us. The golf course was immaculate and surrounded by lush trees and foliage. The gate person was energetic and friendly and made us feel comfortable. We approached the Grill with apprehension. People walked around in designer clothing and expensive jewelry. My wife had never been to a country club.

Wife: “I’m scared to go in here. I don’t feel like we belong. Are you afraid?"

Me: “Yes. And that’s what makes this exciting.”

We sat down and viewed the menu and yes, it was a little pricey (for us) but we were able to afford an entry and split it between us. As we ate, we had a view of the golf course and observed a young lady on the putting green embarrass a young man with her considerable skills. Afterward, we took a walk around the property and listened to sound unfamiliar sound of relaxing silence. 

We took pictures of the gentle swaying bamboo garden, the sweet smelling landscape and the brick ruins of a house.

My point is that ‘belonging’, in many instances, is a state of mind. Sometimes, the boundaries that we give ourselves that somehow, we aren’t worthy of something, are worse than the boundaries that actually exist.

I look forward to “crashing” another country club.

Adrian “Asia” Petty is an independent comic book publisher and director at Jericho Projects, Inc. Find out more about our books at and like us on Facebook at