This story will probably reveal more about me than I intend.
Yesterday I went to a terrific local art supply store that offers a professional discount. I don't bother with it for my usual small purchases but yesterday I spent a chunk of change, so I approached the counter and said these exact words, verbatim:
"I would appreciate the professional discount, please. Because that is what I am."
A 17-year-old buying a six-pack with a fake I.D. would not have sounded shadier.
I'm not insecure about my bona fides. Although I have the usual neurotic share of Imposter Syndrome, I do consider myself a confident professional cartoonist. I'm just terrified that someday they'll ask for proof. Nobody issued me a license. What am I going to do, Google myself while standing at the register? How pathetic. And what are they gonna say?
"You call yourself a professional? Your color sense is pedestrian at best."
"Is that a figure drawing or a crime scene?"
"Sir, when we say 'professional' we're really thinking of oil painters, sculptors, printmakers, kindergarten teachers . . . you know, real artists."
Anyway, the clerk said "Sure" and rang me up without a grilling or even, really, a glance. So if you're looking for art supplies in the North Bay, I recommend Rileystreet. Because they get me.
(Photo nicked from the Sonoma State Star.)