Nicola Vincent-Abnett

Nicola Vincent-Abnett
"Savant" for Solaris, Wild's End, Further Associates of Sherlock Holms, more Wild's End

Sunday 9 February 2014

When 2 plus 2 equals 5

This is how things start. This is how the news gets distorted and this is how rumours spread.

Let this be an object lesson to you all.

Early last year the husband and his collaborator on comic book jobs for many years parted company. That news never really seemed to get out. I don’t know why, but it didn’t. The husband wasn’t asked about it and didn’t choose to release the information in any formal sort of way.

Asked a question on Twitter a couple of weeks ago, the husband commented that he no longer worked with his former partner, and gradually that information began to leak out. It hit, which is a news site for this sort of thing. I didn’t know that, though, until rather later.

Meanwhile, as you know, I write a blog.

Today, my blog had a little stats spike, by which I mean that I had roughly double the number of hits that I might have expected on a regular Saturday, and certainly rather more than I could hope for on a day when I hadn’t written or posted a blog.

I thought this odd, so I glanced at the traffic sources column and there was listed at the very top: I’m not terribly familiar with the site, because my interest in comics is fairly limited and my interest in comic-related websites and fora is non-existent. Nevertheless, I clicked on the link and had a rummage around.

The news item about the husband was short and to the point. So far so good, but as fate would have it, the very day after the husband answered that question on Twitter, I wrote a blog entitled Kiss and Make Up about friendship and betrayal, and about mending relationships when they falter, even if you happen to be the wronged party. It was a blog that garnered quite a lot of interest and appreciation, and I was glad of that, because I genuinely believed, and still believe, that the subject matter was important.

I always post my blogs on Twitter and Facebook, and I also happen to share a Twitter account with the husband, mostly because he’s too busy to tweet more than occasionally.

Here’s where 2 plus 2 equals 5. 
A little light adding up for the
zen master of cool

Some bright spark on the forum, who ironically goes by the handle 'zen master of cool', had added the tweet about the husband and his partner parting to the plug for my blog about friendship on the same Twitter feed and decided that the two were connected. He’d then posted this theory on the forum at with a nifty little link to the blog.

There is so much wrong with this sort of maths that I’m not going to begin to try to explain it. I didn’t try to explain it to the self-proclaimed zen master, either, except to thank him for the spike on my stats graph and point out that all of my blogs are plugged on that Twitter account and that I have no interest in my husband’s working relationships.

If this sort of connection can happen in someone’s head, if this sort of weird misunderstanding can occur so easily, imagine the scale on which such silly shit must happen in the real world of newspapers and magazines. Red top journalists are schooled in the art of finding the most interesting (for which read salacious) stories, so just imagine the leads they follow and the connections they make, and then imagine how those stories grow in their... imaginations.

Mr zen master not only got hold of entirely the wrong end of the stick and shook it vigorously, but in his head, he even appears to have entirely misread my blog, which had a happy ending, and he misunderstood its meaning too. 

Go figure.

So, there you go, folks… If you ever needed a reason to take everything you read with a pinch of salt and not believe anything you didn't see with your own two eyes or hear straight from the horse's mouth then I hope this blog might prove useful to you. 


  1. I used to read Bleeding Cool quite a bit over the last year, but I've avoided the site in recent months due to much of the 'news' being (as you've stated) hearsay and borderline innuendo, with not much fact to back it up. Sometimes they get it, more often than not its 'half right' (or mostly wrong depending on how you view it).

    You'd think they would have had the good grace to at least 'ask' first.

    1. Bleeding Cool did send the husband the copy ahead of publication, which he has since answered. The problem wasn't the original Bleeding Cool post, which I did mention was "short and to the point". The problem was with the people posting on the forum, speculating pointlessly.

      It's everyone's right, of course to think and say whatever they like, but, extrapolated out, and with some journos being either unscrupulous or lazy researchers, or both, it's not hard to see where speculation leads.