I generally don’t talk about my private life here—unless it’s something upbeat or I can get a gag out of it. But I’m about to go all dark and dramatic. So if you’re expecting some jokes, I suggest you don’t read this.

My mom is dying.

She’s been dying for years actually, but recently she’s gotten really good at it. No more chemo. Let the Grim Reaper come knocking. She’s ready.

Thanks to hospice, the pain is mostly manageable.

But Mom wants to die in her own home. So family members have been giving her 24-7 care for the last few months. By family members I mean mostly my sister Lisa and me.

(The week Lisa and I took off to attend last month’s San Diego Comic Con was an obvious exception. It was hard on my mom. And it was probably even harder on the family members who filled in for us.)

I’m spending about three days and nights a week taking care of Mom. And that’s fine. (Lots of good talks and bad TV.) But…I’m falling behind in my life.

Free time is scarce. Mostly, I just meet my deadlines and collapse.

So why talk about this now? Well, I guess I want to let friends and fans (many of you are both) know why I’m so hard to reach. So busy. And so very, very far behind in responding to e-mails.

Okay, that’s it. Monday, I’ll be back without the drama. I’m always happy to concentrate on the gags. We’re all here for the laughs. After all, laughter heals. (And pays my bills.)

In the meantime, though, thanks for letting me get this off my chest.