This is the first Basic Instructions, or at least the first one that was completed.
I got the idea for Basic Instructions at a Burger King. I was refilling my drink, looking at the sign that said “No Refills.”
I thought, Of course I’m going to refill my drink. The refill is how Burger King repays me for doing what’s essentially their job. Without the free refill, I’m paying them a buck to hand me a paper cup.
I was a standup comic at the time, but I couldn’t think of a way to make that idea work as stage material. When I got home, I started writing the first Basic Instructions, “How to Refill Your Drink.” After a couple of hours, I realized that I couldn’t make that idea work as material for a comic strip either, but the idea of a web comic couched as instructions stuck with me.
A week or two later, I produced this, and put it up on LiveJournal. That’s how this all got started.
You’ll notice that the final panel of this comic is the source of the comic’s logo. You’ll also notice that in the first panel, I look like Nosferatu.
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