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The Old Hack

Story Wednesday January 9, 2019

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My best guess is that Grace thinks that Sam sounds just "off" enough that he might have actually transformed, and thus she is bringing out the radar antennae to check.

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So, enough adrenaline and her antennae come out involuntarily?

Unless Gordon chooses this monent to open the door, wide enough for Sam to see the antennae, I'm not sure how this will affect the situation.  And if that happened, Grace would probably be too busy dealing with a very surprised and confused Gordon to be able to talk to Sam before he'd run off again.

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7 hours ago, The Old Hack said:

http://egscomics.com/comic/tsos-25

Oh for the love of...

GET TO THE POINT DAN. PLEASE.

You mean Panel 2? ;)

Dan did mention that he was changing this page and the next for pacing so maybe this was originally going to get drawn out longer?

 

7 hours ago, ijuin said:

My best guess is that Grace thinks that Sam sounds just "off" enough that he might have actually transformed, and thus she is bringing out the radar antennae to check.

I'm not entirely certain, someone asked on Reddit if Grace was going to "feel Sam's boobs" to which Dan said "No". I dunno if the person was intentionally being cheeky or they were only trying to suggest if Grace was going to determine if Sam had male or female parts due to suspecting the slight voice difference might suggest Sam now had male parts. Dan's response could either be "no, Grace isn't going to be feeling Sam's boobs." or "no, she's not checking to see if Sam's transformed", he never said anything else (yet) but that's probably because he plans on showing us Friday anyway.

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2 hours ago, Scotty said:

You mean Panel 2? ;)

I mean the whole story. I love Dan's work, but what with the sudden onslaught of exposition and Grace retreading the ground of the same moral dilemma over and over, I am starting to feel a little frustrated.

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So, apparently Grace thinks there's something off about Sam's voice, or maybe she has some sense even without her antennae that makes her feel something is wrong.

My guesses:

- Sam has started taking hormones, and it's affecting his voice. (While this is the most mundane answer, I seem to recall indications Sam lives with his family who don't know about him being transgender, so that would make this option unlikely.)

- The Sam we know has a near-identical twin (possibly one who is a non-transgender male), and they both sometimes use the "Sam" name. This is the twin.

- Someone with nefarious purposes is masqurading as Sam. (...To pick up Sam's comics? Okay, the plot here is not immediately obvious.)

11 hours ago, The Old Hack said:

http://egscomics.com/comic/tsos-25

Oh for the love of...

GET TO THE POINT DAN. PLEASE.

Hey, take it to the pacing thread! ;)

9 hours ago, CritterKeeper said:

So, enough adrenaline and her antennae come out involuntarily?

Unless Gordon chooses this monent to open the door, wide enough for Sam to see the antennae, I'm not sure how this will affect the situation.  And if that happened, Grace would probably be too busy dealing with a very surprised and confused Gordon to be able to talk to Sam before he'd run off again.

I think she deliberately let out her antennae to find out what's going on. And I think what Grace finds out is what is going to affect the situation.

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Just now, The Old Hack said:

I mean the whole story. I love Dan's work, but what with the sudden onslaught of exposition and Grace retreading the ground of the same moral dilemma over and over, I am starting to feel a little frustrated.

Sorry, I mean in terms of your frustration equaling panel 2 there, I think someone had made it a standalone reaction image, but I was too lazy to find it. :D

And I kinda feel the same way, but I also feel that this is completely in character for Grace and if we didn't see this back and forth from her, I might think it was odd.

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I'm laying odds that Sam is presenting as female right now, including voice. Remember what he said to Sarah  - "I pretty much play a role every day", "Friday nights are when I'm at my most real" - I took this to mean that he's not "out", i.e. presenting as male, other than on Fridays at the card tournament.

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13 minutes ago, CNash said:

I'm laying odds that Sam is presenting as female right now, including voice. Remember what he said to Sarah  - "I pretty much play a role every day", "Friday nights are when I'm at my most real" - I took this to mean that he's not "out", i.e. presenting as male, other than on Fridays at the card tournament.

I feel it'd be strange for Sam to be presenting female at the comic shop. Especially if staff and patrons would only know him as presenting male (Grace would be the exception cus she knows that Sam is trans). Unless he's got a double life thing going on where his female presenting self is seen as a separate person who also happens to be named Sam, in which case, Grace might be about to accidentally discover that secret about Sam as well.

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9 minutes ago, Scotty said:

I feel it'd be strange for Sam to be presenting female at the comic shop. Especially if staff and patrons would only know him as presenting male (Grace would be the exception cus she knows that Sam is trans). Unless he's got a double life thing going on where his female presenting self is seen as a separate person who also happens to be named Sam, in which case, Grace might be about to accidentally discover that secret about Sam as well.

Hmm, yes, I can see how a "Sam" in a dress and Alice band might not be associated with the "Sam" who has a little soul patch beard, who just happens to be the same height and hair color.  Still, it seems like a pretty big risk that someone there would make the connection!

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Yeah, I see your point. Unless Sam looks so drastically different when presenting female than when presenting male, and (as you say) is leading a double life with both "personas" named Sam, which does seem unlikely.

However, if he is presenting as male, it's at odds with what he told Sarah (where he seemed to imply that he is only able to present as male on Friday nights). And getting to the comic shop in daylight while presenting as male might be something he considers risky - he could be recognised by people he knows, and "Say, I thought I saw your daughter Sam out in the mall the other day, but it looked like she had a goatee or something! Kids these days eh?" could lead to a very awkward conversation at home later.

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Just now, CritterKeeper said:

Hmm, yes, I can see how a "Sam" in a dress and Alice band might not be associated with the "Sam" who has a little soul patch beard, who just happens to be the same height and hair color.  Still, it seems like a pretty big risk that someone there would make the connection!

Maybe Sam wears boots when presenting male to give him added height, and has his hair tied in a ponytail when presenting female.

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I'm not sure what is the "actual danger", but I'm sure whatever she discovers with the antennae would be smaller violation of trust than looking for Sam's number in shop records.

12 hours ago, Scotty said:

Unless Gordon chooses this monent to open the door, wide enough for Sam to see the antennae, I'm not sure how this will affect the situation.  And if that happened, Grace would probably be too busy dealing with a very surprised and confused Gordon to be able to talk to Sam before he'd run off again.

If Gordon already knows what antennae are, he would understand the need to keep it secret. If he doesn't, he would assume it's just weird hairstyle and is unlikely to even just comment about it. Same is true for Sam. The antennae aren't something so obviously alien people would recognize Grace as one without already knowing about Uryuom.

8 hours ago, Scotty said:

And I kinda feel the same way, but I also feel that this is completely in character for Grace and if we didn't see this back and forth from her, I might think it was odd.

Yes ... it does  feel long, but it shows a side of Grace we didn't have time to explore before.

3 hours ago, CNash said:

However, if he is presenting as male, it's at odds with what he told Sarah (where he seemed to imply that he is only able to present as male on Friday nights). And getting to the comic shop in daylight while presenting as male might be something he considers risky - he could be recognised by people he knows, and "Say, I thought I saw your daughter Sam out in the mall the other day, but it looked like she had a goatee or something! Kids these days eh?" could lead to a very awkward conversation at home later.

He said "Friday nights are when I'm at my most real" ... it IS possible he is presenting as male for the short time necessary to get the comics, but doesn't consider it as important as Friday's nights because it's just short time. And, note that the comic shop is not inside the mall and that he may be able to "change" into male quite quickly.

That said, I like the idea of presenting as two people more ...

3 hours ago, Scotty said:
3 hours ago, CritterKeeper said:

Hmm, yes, I can see how a "Sam" in a dress and Alice band might not be associated with the "Sam" who has a little soul patch beard, who just happens to be the same height and hair color.  Still, it seems like a pretty big risk that someone there would make the connection!

Maybe Sam wears boots when presenting male to give him added height, and has his hair tied in a ponytail when presenting female.

... yes, Grace might be only one who recognized him as the same Sam. Maybe he knows (or checks through window) who is present and have the clerks divided into "these knows me as man" and "these knows me as woman"? Hell, he may even actually be in records as single person, if the record just says "Sam" ... the gender is unlikely to be noted there.

 

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1 minute ago, hkmaly said:
10 hours ago, Scotty said:

Unless Gordon chooses this monent to open the door, wide enough for Sam to see the antennae, I'm not sure how this will affect the situation.  And if that happened, Grace would probably be too busy dealing with a very surprised and confused Gordon to be able to talk to Sam before he'd run off again.

If Gordon already knows what antennae are, he would understand the need to keep it secret. If he doesn't, he would assume it's just weird hairstyle and is unlikely to even just comment about it. Same is true for Sam. The antennae aren't something so obviously alien people would recognize Grace as one without already knowing about Uryuom.

Critterkeeper said that, but Dan has recently stated on Reddit that no one is about to walk in on Grace:

 

4 minutes ago, hkmaly said:

He said "Friday nights are when I'm at my most real" ... it IS possible he is presenting as male for the short time necessary to get the comics, but doesn't consider it as important as Friday's nights because it's just short time. And, note that the comic shop is not inside the mall and that he may be able to "change" into male quite quickly.

That said, I like the idea of presenting as two people more ...

4 minutes ago, hkmaly said:

... yes, Grace might be only one who recognized him as the same Sam. Maybe he knows (or checks through window) who is present and have the clerks divided into "these knows me as man" and "these knows me as woman"? Hell, he may even actually be in records as single person, if the record just says "Sam" ... the gender is unlikely to be noted there.

It was brought to my attention as well that Sam would have an account set up for reserving comic. If he has been presenting as both male and female at various time, he'd likely need to have 2 separate accounts, and coming into the the shop under the same name might cause suspicion especially, as Critterkeeper suggested earlier, if Sam still looked similar enough in both "forms". Sam probably could use a cover story like how he has a twin sister named Samantha and his full name is Samuel. not like anyone's done something like that before. ;)

 

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1 hour ago, Scotty said:

Critterkeeper said that

Fixed. Not sure how that happened.

1 hour ago, Scotty said:

but Dan has recently stated on Reddit that no one is about to walk in on Grace:

"But"? I said that it wouldn't matter if someone would walk in on Grace.

1 hour ago, Scotty said:
2 hours ago, hkmaly said:

Maybe he knows (or checks through window) who is present and have the clerks divided into "these knows me as man" and "these knows me as woman"? Hell, he may even actually be in records as single person, if the record just says "Sam" ... the gender is unlikely to be noted there.

It was brought to my attention as well that Sam would have an account set up for reserving comic. If he has been presenting as both male and female at various time, he'd likely need to have 2 separate accounts, and coming into the the shop under the same name might cause suspicion especially, as Critterkeeper suggested earlier, if Sam still looked similar enough in both "forms".

As I just said: the reserving comic account is unlikely to specify gender/sex. If Gordon always saw him as her, he wouldn't see any problem.

In EU, such account would likely require identity card to be set up (library account definitely does). How is it realized in US? Driving licence? Does that contain photo? Or just credit card? Anyway, unless it's possible to set up the account completely without any document, it might be easier for him to set up one than two.

2 hours ago, Scotty said:

Sam probably could use a cover story like how he has a twin sister named Samantha and his full name is Samuel. not like anyone's done something like that before. ;)

Reminds me other twins which had different gender but posed as each other ... Mel'arnach and Kel'noz Val'Sarghress ...

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8 hours ago, hkmaly said:

"But"? I said that it wouldn't matter if someone would walk in on Grace.

I'm saying in general we've been assuming that Gordon was about to enter the back room, I had initially suggested that Grace was going to cause a distraction to keep him from entering right away, even though I have no idea why she'd need to since he already knew she went in there.

 

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19 hours ago, hkmaly said:

If Gordon already knows what antennae are, he would understand the need to keep it secret. If he doesn't, he would assume it's just weird hairstyle and is unlikely to even just comment about it. Same is true for Sam. The antennae aren't something so obviously alien people would recognize Grace as one without already knowing about Uryuom.

They are if they're moving around under their own power!

19 hours ago, hkmaly said:

That said, I like the idea of presenting as two people more ...

... yes, Grace might be only one who recognized him as the same Sam. Maybe he knows (or checks through window) who is present and have the clerks divided into "these knows me as man" and "these knows me as woman"? Hell, he may even actually be in records as single person, if the record just says "Sam" ... the gender is unlikely to be noted there.

Yeah, if he set up the account with, say, Gil, and had to show ID to do it, then the account itself may boil down to 1) a name on a clipboard listing who has which titles reserved, and 2) any more personally identifying info may be locked in a filing cabinet (if there are credit card numbers, they are legally required to be locked up), to be pulled out only if someone fails to come in for their comics.  George and Gordon may never have seen anything but "Sam Lastname" on a clipboard or box.  Then Sam just has to worry about whether the one person who set up the account is present.  Heck, maybe it's even Justin's uncle, or someone who doesn't work there anymore.  That would kinda be ideal for Sam.

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2 hours ago, CritterKeeper said:
21 hours ago, hkmaly said:

If Gordon already knows what antennae are, he would understand the need to keep it secret. If he doesn't, he would assume it's just weird hairstyle and is unlikely to even just comment about it. Same is true for Sam. The antennae aren't something so obviously alien people would recognize Grace as one without already knowing about Uryuom.

They are if they're moving around under their own power!

... it was obviously the draft from opening the door.

2 hours ago, CritterKeeper said:
Quote

... yes, Grace might be only one who recognized him as the same Sam. Maybe he knows (or checks through window) who is present and have the clerks divided into "these knows me as man" and "these knows me as woman"? Hell, he may even actually be in records as single person, if the record just says "Sam" ... the gender is unlikely to be noted there.

Yeah, if he set up the account with, say, Gil, and had to show ID to do it, then the account itself may boil down to 1) a name on a clipboard listing who has which titles reserved, and 2) any more personally identifying info may be locked in a filing cabinet (if there are credit card numbers, they are legally required to be locked up), to be pulled out only if someone fails to come in for their comics.  George and Gordon may never have seen anything but "Sam Lastname" on a clipboard or box.  Then Sam just has to worry about whether the one person who set up the account is present.  Heck, maybe it's even Justin's uncle, or someone who doesn't work there anymore.  That would kinda be ideal for Sam.

Hmmmm ... right, based on Justin's call they do have the credit card info but only uses it when the person doesn't came to get the comics personally.

Note that it doesn't need to be on paper in a filling cabinet (in fact, I'm still surprised that's allowed), it may be in computer.

Still, Sam needs to worry if ANY clerk who knows him as the other gender than he's currently presenting as is present. He can't assume they are forgetful enough to not remember he was different gender two weeks ago. The working assumption is that Justin knows him as male BUT Gordon knows him as female ... meaning, it could've been Gordon creating the account based on ID, if the gender/sex is available on the ID (directly or indirectly though photo).

 

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